The New York Yankees will welcome in the Boston Red Sox to open up the most important stretch of baseball this season.
- Boston Red Sox (49-38)
- New York Yankees (44-44)
- American League, 7:05, WPIX/MLBN
- Yankee Stadium, Bronx, NY
Here we go, folks. If the New York Yankees want to contend this season, it must start tonight as they play host to the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium.
If they can take it to them and then the Baltimore Orioles and San Francisco Giants during this 10-game homestand, they could avoid a massive sell-off of their valuable assets.
If not, we could very well pay witness to a fire sale, something Yankees’ fans haven’t seen in recent memory or any memory, for that matter.
The Yankees will send Michael Pineda to try and tame the beast of a Red Sox offense that leads baseball in runs (490), batting average (.292), on-base percentage (.359), slugging percentage (.474), OPS (.833) and doubles (216).
In his lone start in the month of July, Pineda surrendered five runs on five hits over six innings against the Chicago White Sox after a month of June in which he owned a 2.75 earned run average.
Boston sends All-Star knuckleballer Stephen Wright who will attempt to build on a strong first half in which he surrendered two earned runs or less in 11 of his 17 starts.
Last time he pitched in front of the Bronx faithful on May 8, he hurled a complete game.
Friday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchup: Steven Wright vs. Michael Pineda https://t.co/tImVaCkGJa
— WEEI (@WEEI) July 15, 2016
— Yankees SPORTalk (@SPORTalkYankees) July 15, 2016
Red Sox lineup vs NYY: Betts RF, Pedroia 2B, Bogaerts SS, Ortiz DH, Ramirez 1B, Bradley Jr. CF, Shaw 3B, Holt LF, Hanigan C, Wright P
— Boston Red Sox VAVEL (@RedSoxVAVEL) July 15, 2016
Players To Watch:
The Yankees’ shortstop entered the All-Star break on fire. Heck, he could even be considered a snub. Since May 14, Didi owns a slash line of .338/.374/.528 including eight home runs.
Over his last 101 at-bats, he has 35 hits (.365) with an OPS of 1.057 including 20 runs batted in. Watch for him to continue his torrid stretch here in the second half of 2016.
Anytime this guy walks through the door at Yankee Stadium, you better keep an eye out for him.
In his career against the Yankees, Big Papi owns a .307 batting averaging including a .576 slugging percentage with 52 home runs in 230 games played against them.
At Yankee Stadium, he has 15 home runs in 55 games. Translate that into the course of a 162-game span, and Ortiz would own a staggering 44 home runs. He also took Pineda deep the last time he was in New York so watch out for the All-Star slugger to tear it up in the Bronx yet again.
Despite how bad things are in Yankee land, they will use the big series in against the Cleveland Indians and defeat the Red Sox here in game one of this three-game set. Pineda will get hit hard, but a late surge fueled by a home run by Alex Rodriguez will propel the Yankees towards victory.