New York Yankees
(AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

Four hours, 42 minutes and 30 runs later, the New York Yankees emerged as the victors in a topsy-turvy game in London vs. the Boston Red Sox. 

Geoff Magliocchetti

Rookie spectators in London experienced a most unusual introduction to baseball on Saturday afternoon. For the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, a roller-coaster showdown that took a long time to complete was business as usual, even with a score more suitable for an NFL International Series game.

A pair of six-run innings was just enough for the Yankees to triumph, as they escaped the first game of MLB’s inaugural London Series with a 17-13 win over their fiercest rivals. The game took 4 hours and 42 minutes to complete and pushed Boston 10 games behind the Yankees’ AL East lead.

The first regular season MLB game in England, held at London Stadium, got off to an appropriately wild start with each team posting a six-run frame. Aaron Hicks capped off the Yankees’ half with a two-run home run, which chased Boston starter Rick Porcello after just one out.

A two-run double from Didi Gregorius and single-run doubles from Luke Voit and Edwin Encarnacion compiled the rest of the opening Yankee runs.

Masahiro Tanaka didn’t fare much better for the Yankees. He allowed his first run two batters in, and the rally cut the lead in half by the time there were two outs. Boston completed its premature comeback with a three-run blast from Michael Chavis to tie things up. Tanaka was replaced by Chad Green after the home run.

While Green (W, 2-2) kept things relatively normal over two innings, the Yankees (53-28) built an even bigger lead. They would score 11 runs over the next three innings, working their way up to a 17-6 crescendo.

Brett Gardner gave the Yankees the lead for good in the third with a two-run exit against Steven Wright (L, 0-1).

Aaron Judge also smacked a two-run shot in the fourth scoring DJ LeMahieu. The latter led the Yankees with five runs batted in, including three on a double to left immediately preceding Judge.

LeMahieu also capped off the New York scoring with a two-run single in the fifth.

Boston, however, ensured the London crowd that they got a long first dose of baseball. Green and David Hale combined for three shutout innings, but the Red Sox (44-39) hurt Nestor Cortes for five runs over the sixth and seventh.

Jackie Bradley Jr. got it started with a home run in the sixth, while Chavis had another three-run blast in the seventh. Boston inched a little closer via three more runs, including Mookie Betts coming home on a Tommy Kahnle wild pitch. Adam Ottavino got Sam Travis to foul to end the frame.

Boston did threaten one last time by loading the bases with two outs in the eighth, but Zack Britton retired Marco Hernandez via groundout. The game ended with Aroldis Chapman on the mound, as the closer got Travis to finish things off with a double play, securing the Yankee win.

The teams will conclude their London visit on Sunday (10:00 a.m. ET, ESPN). New York will go with the opener strategy, giving Stephen Tarpley (0-0, 6.48 ERA) his first career start. He’ll square off against Eduardo Rodriguez (8-4, 4.87 ERA).

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