Tommy Pham’s first time playing in the best rivalry in baseball certainly was dramatic, and the Boston Red Sox outfielder was right in the middle of it.
Pham, who the Red Sox acquired before the trade deadline from the Cincinnati Reds, came up clutch Friday against the New York Yankees, coming through with a walk-off single in the bottom of the tenth that scored Christian Arroyo and lifted Boston to a pulse-pounding 3-2 victory at Fenway Park.
It was pretty much a perfect script for Pham, aside from the three strikeouts he tallied from the leadoff spot.
“I guess you couldn’t ask for anything else,” Pham told reporters, as seen on NESN postgame coverage. “Maybe less strikeouts for me individually. Other than that, we got a win, walk-off hit. (It was) great.”
With runners on the corners and one out, Pham realized Yankees reliever Lou Trivino was trying to get him to ground into an inning-ending double play.
But Pham would have none of that, even with him believing he got some help to put an end to the game.
“Based off my previous at-bats, see the ball and hit the ball hard,” Pham told reporters of what he looked to do when he stepped into the batter’s box. “From the first pitches, he was attacking with a sinker. So, that pretty much told me their game plan right there. They wanted me to get that double play. I got lucky, barely kept the ball fair.”
In just 10 games with the Red Sox — Pham has at least one hit in eight of those contests — the 34-year-old has quickly ingratiated himself to his new team.
“He’s a professional. He’s a veteran guy,” J.D. Martinez said, as seen on NESN postgame coverage. “He’s been around. He knows what it takes. He handles himself very business-like. He just goes out there and puts professional at-bats together.”