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the struggles for the New York Yankees continued Friday night, this time at the hands of their biggest rival.
Yankees closer Clay Holmes blew his third save opportunity in 11 appearances, walking two batters with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning before allowing a game-tying single to JD Martinez.
Trade deadline acquisition Tommy Pham drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning for a 3-2 Red Sox victory.
“When they come into town, we expect this. We expect games like that,” said Red Sox manager Alex Cora. “They have an outstanding team, but we’ve played well against them the last three times.”
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With the loss, the Yankees dropped to 71-42a game back in the loss column to the Houston Astros, who now own the best record in the American League.
Yankees manager Aaron Boone was asked about the possibility of moving Aroldis Chapman back into the closer role after the loss. Boone left the door open for a change.
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“We’ll see. He was in a high-leverage situation tonight and is throwing the ball incredibly well,” Boone said of Chapman, according to the New York Post. “I love what we’re seeing there, and we’ll see where it leads.”
Aaron Judge launched his MLB-leading 46th home run of the season in the third inning, getting the slugger to 100 RBIs on the season.
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“We’re in first place, but you never want to peak too early,” Judge said, according to the Post. “All these games and big situations like this on the road are just getting us ready for games down the stretch and postseason games like this against tough opponents.”
The loss is the eighth in New York’s last nine games, and the Yankees are a dismal 7-14 since the All-Star break.
For Boston, the win moves them to 56-58 on the season and just four games out of the final wild-card spot in the AL, and Cora insists that their playoff hopes are still alive.
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“I’ve been saying that for a while,” Cora said. “Not too many people believe me. But I think the people that really matter, they believe it. That’s the people in here.”
The Yankees and Red Sox continue their three-game series Saturday at 7:15 pm ET.
The Associated Press contributed to this report