With the New York Yankees leading 4-3 entering the bottom half of the ninth inning Friday night, the odds of a comeback were not in favor of the Boston Red Sox. John Farrell’s team entered the game 0-38 this season when trailing entering the ninth inning.
What worked in Boston’s favor was the fact that the Yankees led the majors in blown saves, and sure enough Aroldis Chapman could not shut the door.
Chapman faced five batters and failed to record an out, the first time he’s done so in his major league career. The end result was a 5-4 Boston victory, with the Red Sox increasing their lead in the AL East to 4.5 games.
Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedrioa reached base on infield singles to begin the ninth, then successfully pulling off the double steal to give the Red Sox runners at second and third with no one out. Second baseman Ronald Torreyes’ error on a Xander Bogaerts ground ball allowed Betts to score, tying the game at four. And after Chapman intentionally walked Hanley Ramirez to load the bases, he walked Andrew Benintendi to force in the winning run.
Chapman walks in the game-winning run as the Red Sox make a 9th inning comeback pic.twitter.com/yGxyz1Lwak
— Sports Daily (@SportsDGI) July 15, 2017
Boston’s walk-off walk was the first for the franchise since Sept. 23, 2000, when Trot Nixon’s 10th-inning walk won a game against the Orioles. Chapman’s blown save is the 16th of the season for the Yankees, which as mentioned above, leads the majors.