Gardner's Homer Not Enough As New York Yankees Drop Series In Boston
BOSTON, MA - AUGUST 20: Brett Gardner #11 of the New York Yankees rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run in the fifth inning of a game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park on August 20, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

A lackluster offensive day for the New York Yankees led to an eventual 5-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox — dropping the three-game set. 

  • New York Yankees: 1 (66-57)
  • Boston Red Sox: 5 (71-52)
  • American League, FINAL, Box Score 
  • Fenway Park, Boston, MA

Sonny Gray grinded through five innings of two-run ball without his best stuff, but the New York Yankees offense couldn’t pick him up as they dropped the series finale to the Boston Red Sox by a score of 5-1.

Boston struck first in the bottom of the second inning on one swing of the bat by Jackie Bradley Jr. On a 2-0 fastball from Gray, he smacked a sharp liner into deep center field to score Xander Boegarts from second and Sandy Leon from first in order to put the Red Sox up by a pair of runs.

After it seemed as though the Yankees would fall victim to Rick Porcello and go down without a fight, Brett Gardner gave his team a pulse, for the time being.

The 33-year-old hooked a changeup inside the “Pesky Pole” in right field to cut Boston’s lead in half. It was his 20th home run of the season, joining only Curtis Granderson on the list of Yankee hitters to hit 20 or more home runs and steal 15 or more bases in a single-season since 2010.

Bradley wouldn’t go away, however, as he came through again in the bottom of the sixth. After Mitch Moreland reached on a single to left field off Adam Warren, a wild pitch and ground ball moved him all the way to third, giving Bradley Jr. a prime opportunity to add an insurance run.

Warren’s 2-0 offering was looped into right field just in front of Aaron Judge, extending Boston’s lead to 3-1.

Porcello finished his afternoon with four strikeouts over six innings of one-run ball to hand it over to his bullpen in seventh. Brandon Workman sent New York down in order in the seventh and Addison Reed did the same in the eighth before the Red Sox delivered a put-away punch in the bottom of the inning.

Sandy Leon came through with a two-run double off Tommy Kahnle to extend that lead to 5-1. Caleb Smith came on to bypass further trouble, but the damage had already been done and the ball was put in the trustworthy hands of Craig Kimbrel.

The righty sent down Didi Gregorius on a pop-up, fanned Gary Sanchez then retired Chase Headley via the strikeout in the ninth to hand the Yankees their 12th road series loss in 14 series.

Obscure But True:

Gray registered five innings without fanning a batter, marking just the fourth time a Yankees’ starting pitcher has done it this decade. Masahiro Tanaka, Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes were the other pitchers to go strikeout-less through at least five innings.

RISP Fail: 

After going 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position on Sunday, the Yankees’ season batting average in that situation dropped to .250. That total breaks the tie with the 1986 Yankees for the 10th-worst batting average with runners in scoring position in team history. The worst belongs to the 1967 Bombers, who hit .216.

Toss The Red Flag:

Manager Joe Girardi challenged a called pickoff on Brett Gardner at first base in the top of the third inning. After winning the challenge, his success rate on replay reviews jumped to 73.3 percent (22-of-30). From 2014-16, the Yankees had a Major League-best 73.6 percent success rate on replay challenges (87 challenges, 64 overturned).

This Day In Yankees’ History: 

On August 20, 1938, future Hall-of-Famer Lou Gehrig hits his 23rd and final career grand slam off Buck Ross in the first inning of an 11-3 win at Shibe Park. His 23 career slams stood for 74 years — until Alex Rodriguez passed him in 2013 — as a Major League record.

What’s Next: 

Following New York’s third-to-last off-day of 2017, they’ll head to Comerica Park to take on the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday night.

Masahiro Tanaka is scheduled to come off the 10-day disabled list in order to make his 24th start of the season in the series-opener. He hit the shelf on August 12 (retroactive to August 10 8/10) with right shoulder inflammation after issuing a career-high five walks while allowing three runs in a no-decision against the Blue Jays on August 9.

First pitch is slated for 7:10 p.m. ET and can be caught on the YES Network or on the radio at WFAN 660/101.9 FM.