Longtime rivals Red Sox, Yankees, back at it in AL wild card
BOSTON(AP) — It’s happening.
A day before Cole is set to face the Red Sox in an AL wild-card match, New York Yankees ace Gerrit Col dropped the name that cannot be used within Fenway Park. This was not the first time since the AL playoff between these long-standing rivals was decided by a shortstop who hit the go-ahead run over the Green Monster.
“Bucky dent, right?” Cole was asked about the history of the two teams. You’re dreaming of being in that position and winning for your team. And here we are.”
Forty-three years after Dent’s homer helped the Yankees beat Boston to break a tie for the AL East title, the teams meet again for one game, with the winner this time advancing to face the Tampa Bay Rays in an AL Division Series.
Cole (16-8) faces Nathan Eovaldi (11-9) in Boston, where Dent homered, where ‘Tek shoved A-Rod, where Roger returned, where Pedro pushed Zimmer and where Dave Roberts stole second to make everyone all-but forget about everything that happened up until then.
“There’s a buzz here,” said New York manager Aaron Boone, himself a Boston beater with an 11th-inning, walk-off home run in Game 7 of the 2003 AL Championship Series at Yankee Stadium.
” It matters here. It’s great fun to play in these games. Boone stated that it is difficult to compete in these games. “Yeah. I believe there will be tension and electricity. All you can hope for in a winner-takes-all playoffs game, and two outstanding franchises or teams . It will be the fifth meeting of the teams in the playoffs. The 1978 tiebreaker counts as part the regular season. Each team has won twice. In postseason games, New York leads 12-11, but Boston has won seven of the last eight.
Twice series have come down to a win-or-go-home seventh game, in the 2003 and ’04 ALCS. Each team has won one. Alex Cora,
Red Sox manager, arrived in Boston in 2005, just after the peak of the rivalry. He said that players like Manny Ramirez and Jorge Posada were the driving force behind the rivalry back then.
” It was about the characters, the bigger-than life players,” he stated. Cora stated, “It was like, ‘Wow, these men are unbelievable.’ They used to fight back in the day so I think that added a bit more for the fans.” It’s been a roller-coaster ride. “We have great players… Two teams are competing for the same thing. Throughout the season, it’s been a roller-coaster ride.”
With baseball returning to a full, 162-game schedule after the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, the Red Sox held the edge over the Yankees for most of the year but fell behind after a New York sweep in Boston from Sept. 24-26. The Red Sox swept the Nationals on the final weekend while the Yankees lost two of three to the AL East champion Rays to finish tied at 92-70; Boston earned home-field advantage by virtue of its 10-9 head-to-head record against New York.
This helped to avoid tiebreakers which would have required a Game 163 in Boston.
It is a good thing too.
Rain fell steadily throughout the city. The tarp was never taken off Fenway’s infield during what turned into a training day for wild-card contenders. It was an optional decision by the Yankees. About half of the team came to the ballpark, while the other half did their work indoors. A dozen Red Sox also played catch in the outfield.
The forecast for Tuesday is for the rain to stop in the morning and temperatures in the high 50s.
Boone said he expected infielder Gio Urshela, who bruised his thigh making a sensational catch of a foul ball Sunday in the clincher against Tampa Bay, to be able to play against Boston. Cora wasn’t sure if J.D. was going to be there. Martinez, who fell on second base while he ran out to his outfield position against Washington on Sunday.
Cora stated that he expected Christian Arroyo to play second base and Kevin Plawecki to be at catcher. Cora stated that Jarren Duran is “a good possibility” to be on the roster.
Lefthander Chris Sale, who threw 62 pitches Sunday, is returning from Tommy John surgery and tried to argue for a spot on this roster. But Cora stopped him.
“He did throw today. He felt good. Cora stated that he stopped by the office to tell me, “No, we’re no doing that.” “Hopefully he has a chance to start again here in October.”
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