|Freddy Garcia redeems himself at Fenway||07.07.12 at 6:22 pm ET|
Freddy Garcia remembers the last time he pitched at Fenway Park before Saturday’s Game 1 6-1 win over the Red Sox.
It was also a game he started for the Yankees in which New York came out on top. But for a far different reason. That was the game on April 21 when the Yankees had to score seven in the seventh and seven in the eighth to come out on top 15-9. That was the game the Yankees fell behind 9-0 before storming back.
He was shelled for five runs and seven hits while lasting just 1 2/3 innings.
On Saturday, it was the Yankees doing the early shelling for Garcia as Nick Swisher and Andruw Jones belted back-to-back homers in a four-run first inning against Red Sox starter Franklin Morales and Garcia threw 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball as the Yankees won the first game of a day-night doubleheader, 6-1, Saturday at Fenway Park. Boston’s fifth straight loss dropped them back to the .500 mark at 42-42. Derek Jeter had three hits for the eighth time this season for the Yankees, who moved 9 1/2 games ahead of the Red Sox in the AL East.
“I did not think about it,” Garcia said Saturday. “That happened in April. We’re in July so I had a bad outing that day. I cannot think about it. I have to go out and pitch. That’s what I do.”
In his roughest outing of the year, Morales lasted just 3 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on six hits, including a season-high four home runs. Morales allowed a leadoff single to Jeter in the first but appeared ready to get out of the inning when Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez flew out. But he hit Robinson Cano with a pitch and Swisher belted his 13th homer to left. Jones followed with his eighth to left and the Yankees led, 4-0. Unlike Friday night, there was no response by the Red Sox in the bottom of the first.
Garcia held the Red Sox hitless until David Ortiz singled off the Monster with one out in the fourth. Ortiz would come around to score in that inning when Adrian Gonzalez and Mauro Gomez followed with singles. But the one-rally that showed promise ended when Ryan Kalish hit into an inning-ending doubleplay.
The brightest spot of the game by far was the performance of righthander Justin Germano, who relieved Morales in a two-run Yankee fourth inning that stretched the lead to 6-0. Germano finished with seven strikeouts over 5 2/3 scoreless innings, saving the Red Sox bullpen for the nightcap.
Ortiz went 1-for-1 with three walks to raise his average to .310. He has four walks and four singles in the series as the Yankees are pitching around him.
Felix Doubront will start the second game of Saturday’s day-night doubleheader for the Red Sox against the division-leading Yankees.
In his last start, Doubront (8-4, 4.42) allowed one run through 4 1/3 innings as the Red Sox defeated Seattle 2-1. Doubront did not factor in the decision, however.
June 20 is the last time he won a start. Doubront pitched six innings of four-run baseball en route to a 15-5 victory over the Marlins on that day.
The 24-year-old started against the Yankees on April 21, when he allowed one run through six innings in an eventual 15-9 Red Sox loss. Doubront has faced nine members of New York’s current lineup, but none more than six times.
Freddy Garcia, who is filling in as a starter for the injured CC Sabathia, last started on July 2. He pitched 5 1/3 innings and allowed two runs as the Yankees fell to the Rays 4-3. Garcia (2-2, 5.94) did not factor in the decision.
The 36-year-old also started against the Red Sox and Doubront on April 21. Although the Yankees eventually won, Garcia only lasted 1 2/3 innings and allowed five runs on seven hits.
Of the 10 Boston batters who have faced Garcia, designated hitter David Ortiz has the most experience. In 42 appearances against the righty, Ortiz has a .300 batting average, two home runs, five doubles and 7 RBIs. Read the rest of this entry »
|Saturday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Felix Doubront vs. Freddy Garcia||04.21.12 at 8:59 am ET|
With the pageantry of Fenway Park’s 100th birthday dampened by a 6-2 loss that pushed the Red Sox’s record at Fenway this year to 3-4, the Red Sox will attempt to even their home record on Saturday afternoon when they again host the Yankees.
Boston will send out young left-hander Felix Doubront, who has yet to earn a decision in an outing this season, although the team is 2-0 when he starts. Doubront enters the game on the heels of an outing against the Rays in which he struck out a career-high seven batters. The Red Sox won that game, 6-4, but Doubront was pulled after allowing a leadoff home run in the sixth inning to Luke Scott to allow the Rays to tie the game, 4-4. Doubront allowed four runs on nine hits in his five innings of work.
Although Doubront has pitched in four games against the Yankees, he has never started against them. In 4 2/3 innings of work against New York, Doubront has a 3.86 ERA, allowing three hits and two earned runs and recording one save. Only three members of the Yankees lineup — Curtis Granderson, Nick Swisher and Eric Chavez — have hits against Doubront. Granderson’s hit was a good one, as he knocked out a two-run home run against Doubront and the Red Sox in a 9-4 Yankees win last April.
The Yankees will counter the 24-year-old Doubront with 35-year-old veteran Freddy Garcia, who is 0-1 through two starts this season. In Garcia’s last start, a 7-3 Yankees loss to the Twins on April 16, Garcia allowed five runs on nine hits through 5 2/3 innings. Garcia did not allow a walk in that game, and although he has the highest ERA of any Yankees starter at 6.97, his control has been masterful all season, as his three walks this year are the second-lowest by a New York starter.
Garcia has pitched well against the Red Sox in the past, as he earned a 9-4 record with a 4.45 ERA in 20 career starts against Boston. That historical success was not a factor for Garcia last season, however, as the right-hander went 1-2 in his four starts against Boston, allowing five runs on 22 hits in 19 innings of work.
Mike Aviles especially enjoys batting against Garcia, as he is 8-for-14 with a home run and an RBI against the veteran, his best mark against any New York starter. Aviles’ two hits in Friday’s loss extended his hit streak to three games, and he has a hit in seven of his last eight games.
|Roy Oswalt isn’t walking through that door, and Bobby Valentine is OK with that||02.23.12 at 3:32 pm ET|
FORT MYERS, Fla. — According to multiple reports, Roy Oswalt‘s agent Bob Garber suggested that the 34-year-old right-hander, after not receiving an offer to his liking this winter, is comfortable sitting out until the middle of the season before looking for a deal with a contender.
The Red Sox had been interested in Oswalt as a possible free-agent signing throughout the offseason, particularly when he sought just a one-year deal. Had the Sox signed him, he would have given addition definition to a rotation that right now features Jon Lester, Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz in the first three spots but openings in the fourth and fifth spots.
Sox manager Bobby Valentine acknowledged that while there would have been some greater security to be gleaned by signing the veteran, that Oswalt comes with his own question marks after pitching just 139 innings (his fewest since 2003) due to back woes last season. That being the case, Valentine remained comfortable with the idea of having a large group of potential starters (Daniel Bard, Alfredo Aceves, Carlos Silva, Vicente Padilla, Aaron Cook, Felix Doubront, Andrew Miller) compete for the final two spots in the rotation.
“I would just think that history is a great teacher. Recent history showed me that the team that won our division last year had no fourth and fifth starter coming into spring training last year,” Valentine said, referring to a 2011 Yankees team that had an open spring training competition for the back of the rotation that yielded Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia, both of whom proved year-long rotation mainstays. “That’s as comfortable as I am. It’s not like I’m so comfortable. Roy Oswalt, he’d be maybe more comfortable, but I wouldn’t be totally comfortable. What did he pitch,  innings last year?” Read the rest of this entry »
|Friday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Jon Lester vs. Freddy Garcia||09.23.11 at 8:03 am ET|
Before the season, a late-September series against the Yankees seemed to be a marquee matchup between two teams battling for the division title. Yet because of a September collapse, the Red Sox search for wins in the series to keep the surging Rays at bay while the division-winning Yankees will attempt to prepare their team for the postseason.
The first game of the series features left-hander Jon Lester against Yankees hurler Freddy Garcia. Lester looks to return to form after rough outings in three of his last four starts.
Like the Red Sox, Lester has struggled in September. After going 14-6 with a 3.09 ERA from April through August, Lester is 1-3 while giving up nine runs on 23 hits through 23 innings. Oddly enough, Yankee Stadium may be just the place for Lester to rediscover his rhythm. Lester is 2-0 at Yankee Stadium this season and is 2-1 with a 4.30 ERA against the Yankees this season.
Derek Jeter is the only Yankee hitting above .300 in his career against Lester. In 51 plate appearances against Lester, Jeter is hitting .340 with two RBIs, three walks and 10 strikeouts.
Garcia is winless against the Red Sox this season, going 0-2 in four starts with a 6.92 ERA. In his last three starts, Garcia has not pitched well, allowing 15 earned runs in 12 1/3 inning while walking six, striking out eight and allowing six home runs. Despite Garcia’s struggles on the mound, the Yankee offense helped New York to a 2-1 record in those three games.
Multiple Red Sox batters have enjoyed success against Garcia throughout their careers. Marco Scutaro is hitting .533 against the right-hander in 15 plate appearances, touching Garcia up for a double, two triples and an RBI. Carl Crawford also hits well against Garcia, batting .304 with a double, a triple, a home run and two RBIs. Read the rest of this entry »
|John Kruk on M&M: ‘They have to do something’ about slow pace of Sox-Yankees games||08.09.11 at 2:54 pm ET|
ESPN baseball analyst John Kruk joined Mut & Merloni Tuesday afternoon for his weekly interview to discuss the ins-and-outs of the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry, including how slowly the games were played this past weekend. To hear the full interview, check out the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page.
Boston’s 2-1 Sunday night victory over New York lasted four hours and fifteen minutes, which will reportedly prompt a letter from the MLB. Despite the excitement of Josh Reddick‘s 10th inning walk-off RBI, Kruk admitted that the pace of the first 9 1/2 innings made the game tough to watch.
“They have to do something,” Kruk said. “You’re going to a ball game, and the beauty of baseball is there’s no time, but according to the rule book there is time. I understand TV, two minutes between innings, that can cause some issues. But to me, the rule is 12 seconds from once the pitcher gets the ball to when he should throw it, 12 seconds according to the rule book.
“We were timing them. [Angels pitcher Jered] Weaver was averaging 25 to 26 to 28 seconds, [Josh] Beckett sometimes was over 30 seconds, [Yankees pitcher Freddy] Garcia‘s never going to be in a hurry to do anything. And then we watched Derek Lowe pitching for the Braves last night. He was seven to eight seconds, nine seconds. [Tim] Wakefield was eight to nine seconds last night against Minnesota, and the games seemed to be quicker-paced games. I understand with runners in scoring position, shaking off and stuff because you want to make sure you got the right pitch, but I mean, there’s no one on base and it’s taking 30, 40 seconds to throw a pitch, there’s some problems.
“We’ve been getting killed about the lethargic play and Beckett taking his time. [Garica]‘s in no rush either. I always knew that when I was excited for a game and amped up for a game, when a guy was slow and delivered taking his time, sometimes you expand the strike zone just to speed things up, just because you’re impatient. You can put a clock on [Garcia], it’s going to be really, really slow whenever he pitches and with Beckett going against him, jeez, was that long.”
When the game did come to an end, the Red Sox emerged with a 2-1 series victory and sole posession of first place in the American League East. Kruk still has Boston as his pick to win the AL pennant, but he was hesitant to crown them World Series favorites.
“I’m going to say they’re the best team in the American League,” said Kruk. “I think the Phillies, with the addition of Hunter Pence, might have taken a step ahead. Not a big step, but a step ahead and it really balances out their lineup, add the right-handed bat in there to hit behind Ryan Howard. I mean, the Red Sox are just, oh my god, they just kill people. It’s fun to watch.”
|Sunday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Josh Beckett vs. Freddy Garcia||08.07.11 at 11:00 am ET|
Friday and Saturday solved nothing, or at least it seems that way now. The Red Sox and Yankees remain tied atop the AL East standings with the same exact record (69-43), just as they were when the three-game series started at the beginning of the weekend. Josh Beckett and Freddy Garcia will look to break that tie Sunday night before their respective teams go their separate ways.
The assumption among many in baseball circles is that if you need a pitcher to beat the Yankees, Beckett (9-4, 2.20 ERA) is your man, and his 2011 stats against the men in pinstripes would certainly back that up. In three starts this season, he is 3-0 with a 0.86 ERA and 0.71 WHIP. He failed to give up a run in his first two outings against the Yankees before allowing two in his last start on June 9 at Yankee Stadium. But for his career, Beckett’s numbers aren’t as nice. Although his 13 wins against New York are the most he’s had against any team, his 5.52 ERA certainly isn’t anything to brag about.
Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano, the two players who have faced Beckett the second- and third-most during the hurler’s career, have been two of the Yankees that have given him fits over the years. Their .301 and .323 lifetime averages rank second and first on the team respectively while Cano’s 12 RBI total is the highest among any player who has ever faced Beckett. Still, while Jeter and Cano have had some success, first baseman Mark Teixeira and designated hitter Jorge Posada have struck out a combined 34 times when facing Beckett.
On the other side, Garcia (10-7, 3.22) has not fared well at all against the Red Sox this season. In eight innings over two starts, the right-hander has allowed nine earned runs for an ERA of 10.13. He lost both starts, the last of which lasted only 1 2/3 innings on June 7 in the Bronx.
As a team, the Red Sox are hitting .312 against Garcia since his debut in 1999, led by Mike Aviles’ .636 (7-for-11) and Marco Scutaro’s .462 (6-for-13) performances at the plate. Perhaps Kevin Youkilis, whose .214 is the lowest on the Sox roster among hitters who have faced Garcia more than eight times, could be in line for a day off with Aviles potentially taking his place at third. Read the rest of this entry »
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