The Boston Red Sox might be sad to see Yankee Stadium go at the end of the season.
The Red Sox will be trying for their longest single-season winning streak in The Bronx in more than 20 years as they continue their four-game series with New York on Saturday.
Boston (52-37) beat the Yankees 6-4 on Friday for its third straight win at Yankee Stadium and second in this series. The Red Sox won their final three road games against the Yankees (45-42) in 1999 and their first in 2000, but haven’t won four in a row at Yankee Stadium in a single season since 1986.
In their four games at Yankee Stadium this season, the Red Sox have scored 29 runs. New York will move into a new Yankee Stadium after this season.
Mike Lowell hit a go-ahead, three-run homer to key Friday’s win. Teammate Kevin Youkilis provided another dramatic moment, when his fly ball squirted out of Johnny Damon’s glove, bounced off the top of the left-field wall three times, and sat on the fence for several seconds before dropping back onto the field for a tying, two-run triple.
Damon left the game after the play. An MRI revealed a sprained acromioclavicular joint, and Damon said he would be out at least a few days, and may possibly end up on the DL for the first time in his 14-season major league career.
Damon’s injury was just the latest bad news for the Yankees, who have dropped nine of 14 since a season-high, seven-game winning streak. New York got an earful from manager Joe Girardi after going 0-for-10 with runners on base in Thursday’s series-opening, 7-0 loss, but was just 2-for-14 on Friday.
New York fell into fourth place in the AL East, percentage points behind Baltimore, six games back of Boston and a season-high nine games behind division-leading Tampa Bay.
“Last night was a frustrating loss,” Girardi said. “Today’s a frustrating loss.”
Alex Rodriguez, whose relationship with pop singer Madonna has made for plenty of tabloid fodder over the last several days, doubled in two runs in New York’s three-run first.
Now, the Yankees will try to get their offense going against Boston starter Justin Masterson (4-2, 3.75 ERA), who is getting his first taste of the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry.
Masterson has gone at least six innings in seven of his eight starts, but he’s given up four runs and walked at least four in each of his last two outings. The right-hander took a loss after walking a season-high five in six innings of a 5-4 loss at Tampa Bay on Monday.
New York’s Mike Mussina (10-6, 3.87), meanwhile, has faced Boston 54 times, going 19-17 with a 3.80 ERA. In his last four starts against the Red Sox, he’s 0-3 with a 9.30 ERA, including a pair of losses against them in April.
Since losing to them on April 23, however, Mussina is 9-3 overall with a 3.36 ERA overall. Girardi thinks he deserves a place on the AL All-Star team.
“I think you look at his numbers, and how he’s pitched and how important he has been to our club,” the manager told the Yankees’ official Web site. “How many guys in the American League have 10 wins?”
Mussina gave up two runs and five hits in six innings of Monday’s 2-1 loss to Texas, dropping consecutive starts for the first time since April.
Lowell is 11-for-19 with three homers and eight RBIs against Mussina.