Final, 4-4: So the Red Sox have come back from the early 4-0 hole. Mike Aviles ignited the rally, hitting a double off the Green Monster.
Jason Repko drove Ryan Sweeney in with a perfectly executed suicide squeeze, but that’ll be the game. Sox have an early one Friday.
Mid 9th, Yankees 4-3: Scott Atchison also bounced back from his rough outing last time around, tossing a scoreless inning. He surrendered one hit and fanned a batter.
Melancon didn’t allow a single hit in his one-inning stint. Progress for those guys.
Bottom 8th, Yankees 4-3: The spring training feel-good story of Pedro Ciriaco continues.
After driving in Jason Repko with a double, the shortstop pulled off a nifty slide at second base that was ruled safe. During the next at-bat, Nate Spears hit a single and it looked like Ciriaco would be tagged out at home by a mile.
Instead, he dodged the catcher and slid safely at home to cut the deficit.
Lars Anderson continued it by slugging an RBI double. Josh Kroeger had a chance to tie it up, but struck out swinging to end the inning.
Mid 8th, Yankees 4-0: Mark Melancon really rebounded from a disaster outing last time around, retiring three out of the four hitters that he faced.
He plunked Yankees third baseman Jorge Vazquez pretty good, so much so, the youngster had to exit.
Also, let’s make note that when Bobby Valentine said Melancon “backed up the bases pretty well”, it wasn’t a slight. Valentine wanted to clear that up and said it was an inside joke between him and Melancon. So there’s that.
Bottom 7th, Yankees 4-0: Betances had a strong inning there, striking out Cody Ross and Ryan Sweeney in straight at-bats.
He also had Ryan Lavarnway fly out to center field. By the way, we caught up with Aaron Cook about his outing and here are his thoughts.
“Felt really good,” Cook said. “I was able to establish early strikes, get them swinging and I felt like I had pretty good command of the strike zone all night.”
Mark Melancon is in for Ohlendforf.
Mid 7th, Yankees 4-0: I have to say that Cody Ross has patrolled left field pretty well. I’m pretty sure it’s one of the few appearances of the spring that he’s made over there.
Doug Bernier and Colin Curtis both flied out to Ross in the seventh, which is why it was worth mentioning. Also, Ohlendorf looks like he might get four innings of work like Cook.
Bottom 6th, Yankees 4-0: Remember this name Red Sox followers, Dellin Betances. He’s supposed to be the next stud pitcher on the Yankees that could end up in the starting rotation if any emergencies pop up.
He handled the Red Sox lineup well in the sixth, forcing Ellsbury to ground out and striking out Nate Spears and retiring Ortiz on a ground out.
Betances has issued three walks, however, but nonethless he could be facing Red Sox hitters more often in the future.
Mid 6th, Yankees 4-0: Ohlendorf rebounded well after a tough 5th inning. The oft-injured righty turned in a pair of strikeouts to end the inning, showing that his recurring arm injuries may be a thing of the past.
Right fielder Ryan Sweeney also impressed in the field, showing off some of his oft-credited defensive work. Sweeney tracked a fly ball down the right field and pulled it in with the backhand just in front of the wall. His defensive prowess will surely be a pleasant addition for the Sox this season.
End 5th, Yankees 4-0: The Red Sox still seem to be finding no answers on the offensive side of things.
Kelly Shoppach worked a two-out walk, giving the Sox their first base runner since the 2nd inning. But Mike Aviles wasn’t able to take advantage of Betances’ control problems, bringing an end to another fruitless inning for the Sox.
Mid 5th, Yankees 4-0: The bottom of the Yankees’ lineup jumped all over Ross Ohlendorf.
It started with Brandon Laird’s double and Jose Gil’s single and shortstop Doug Bernier ended up hitting a two-run single to balloon the lead.
It’s Ohlendorf’s first hiccup of the spring. He’s a long shot to make the team, but we’ll see how he rebounds.
Bottom 4th, Yankees 2-0: The Yankees pulled a shift on David Ortiz and the designated hitter nearly legged it out.
There was nothing else promising that inning for Boston’s hitters. Heading into the fifth, however, Aaron Cook has been replaced by Ross Ohlendorf.
Mid 4th, Yankees 2-0: Curtis Granderson is back to punishing the Red Sox — even though these games don’t count.
With Brett Gardner on base, Granderson unloaded a triple off the centerfield wall for the RBI. In the next at-bat, Andruw Jones drove in Granderson to add onto the lead.
Also, it was announced that Dustin Pedroia has exited the game with a right forearm contusion.
Bottom 3rd, 0-0: This Adam Warren guy isn’t that bad. The funny part is he was a late replacement for David Phelps.
Warren struck out Pedroia and Mike Aviles in the third inning, so that’s impressive. In the process, Pedroia got hit in the forearm by the pitch and was immediately yanked out by Valentine.
Pedroia wanted to stay in, but Pedro Ciriaco is coming in for him.
Mid 3rd, 0-0: That sinkerball and curveball combo is allowing Aaron Cook to work through the Yankees’ lineup quickly.
Cook also got his second strikeout of the night. That reunion with Bob McClure sure looks like it has positive ramifications ahead.
Bottom 2nd, 0-0: The Red Sox were threatening. After David Ortiz and Ryan Sweeney belted singles, Kelly Shoppach had a chance to capitalize.
But he didn’t. Shoppach flew out to right field, ending the inning.
On another note, Sweeney finally got another hit. Entering this game, the outfielder was 1-for-15 in official spring training at-bats. Valentine hasn’t been a fan of Sweeney’s mechanics , but hopes he’ll figure it out.
Mid 2nd, 0-0: So far, so good for Aaron Cook. He’s really a sleeper to sneak into the fifth spot in the rotation. At the very least, his sinkerball and curveball could induce a lot of groundballs in Fenway Park.
For you sabermetrics geeks out there, Bobby Valentine was asked if a groundball pitcher could thrive in the AL East the skipper said “it depends on their BABIP.”
Bottom 1st, 0-0: Adam Warren has Ellsbury and Pedroia ground out to second and shortstop, respectively.
Hearing the ESPN broadcast here, Terry Francona called Pedroia the “most special player” he’s ever been around. Obviously, those two were and will continue to be close.
After Pedroia’s at-bat, Kevin Youkilis flew out.
Mid 1st, 0-0: Aaron Cook looked sharp to start off the night, sitting down the Yankees in order, 1-2-3.
Dustin Pedroia helped provide some solid defense in the field. And Cook struck out Andruw Jones to close out the impressive inning of work.
7:05 p.m.: Bobby Valentine is putting out his big hitters, tonight.
The New York Yankees are visitg JetBlue Park for the first and only time this Spring, and the Sox are prepared for their rivals arrival with an assortment of their Opening Day roster filling out the lineup card.
Here’s a look at the starting lineups.
Bret Gardner, LF
Curtis Granderson, CF
Andrew Jones, RF
Eric Chavez, 3B
Raul Ibanez, DH
Gerald Laird, 1B
Jose Gil, C
Ramiro Pena, 2B
Doug Bernier, SS
Adam Warren, P
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Kevin Youkilis, 3B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
David Ortiz, DH
Cody Ross, LF
Ryan Sweeney, RF
Kelly Shoppach, C
Mike Aviles, SS
Aaron Cook, P
5:30 p.m.: The Red Sox welcome the divisional rival New York Yankees to JetBlue Park for the first and only time this Spring.
Boston did make a trip to the Yankees’ spring training facility early last week to the tune of a 1-0 win. This time around the Sox are breaking out their big bats, as the team’ starting lineup looks eerily similar to what is projected come Opening Day.
Jacoby Ellsbury is leading things off for the Sox, and the core middle of the lineup is being filled with the usual suspects in Kevin Youkilis, Adrian Gonzalez and David Ortiz.
The Yankees, on the other hand, don’t appear to be taking this one quite as seriously. With the likes of Robinson Cano, Mark Teixiera and Derek Jeter noticably missing from the team’s batting order, this go around doesn’t quite hold the same intensity that the teams first series in April might bring.
Fringe roster candidate Aaron Cook is set to take the hill for the Sox, while the Yankees will have young right-hander Adam Warren tossing from the hill to start things off.
First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. and you can catch all the action on NESN. But keep right here for up to the minute informaton with NESN.com’s live blog.