David Ortiz hit his league-leading 49th homer, and Kevin
Youkilis had a three-run double in the seventh inning to lead the
Red Sox over the Yankees 6-3 in the opener of Sunday's day-night
The teams split a day-night doubleheader Saturday, and the
Yankees were in position to clinch their ninth straight division
title with a sweep Sunday combined with a Blue Jays loss to the
Devil Rays. But even before the Red Sox got the final out, Toronto
"Sooner or later, we are going to clinch this thing," Johnny
New York, which leads the AL East by 10½ games over the
second-place Red Sox, still has a magic number of four and hopes to
wrap up the division during a seven-game trip to Toronto and Tampa
Bay that starts Monday.
"Celebrating here, celebrating next week," Youkilis said
before pausing. "It's definitely better that they're not
celebrating in front of us."
Boston remained eight games behind Minnesota, the AL wild-card
"There's no glory here," Youkilis said. "It doesn't make us
happy, at all. Our goal this year was to win the division and we
didn't accomplish it, barring a miracle."
Ron Villone (3-3) relieved to start the seventh with the score
2-all and walked Doug Mirabelli with one out. Villone caught
pinch-runner Coco Crisp off first on a pickoff with two outs, but
Crisp curled around first baseman Craig Wilson and got back to the
"Coco's footwork to keep it going was interesting," Red Sox
manager Terry Francona said.
Wilson, who argued unsuccessfully, claimed Crisp was 6 feet out
of the basepath but said first base umpire Mike Esterbrook told him
Crisp didn't stray beyond the 3-foot limit.
Pinch-hitter Mark Loretta then worked out a 10-pitch walk and
pinch-hitter Dustin Pedroia, hitting just .137, doubled down the
left-field line for a 3-2 lead. After an intentional walk to Ortiz
loaded the bases, Youkilis cleared them with a double that
short-hopped the wall in right-center.
Bryan Corey (2-1) won in relief of Kyle Snyder, who used a big
curveball to strike out seven in five innings. He allowed his only
runs in the third, when Damon and Melky Cabrera hit consecutive
doubles and Robinson Cano followed with an RBI single.
Villone has allowed 27 runs in 26 innings since the end of July,
his ERA rising from 2.08 to 4.50.
"I'm not far away," he said. "Physically I feel good. I'm
missing by a little bit here and there."
New York's Jaret Wright gave up David Murphy's first major
league home run on his fourth pitch of the game and Ortiz's homer
leading off the sixth. Fans, who had been taunting Ortiz with
chants of "Derek Jeter!" quickly shifted to "Season's Over!"
While Ortiz wasn't speaking to reporters, Murphy expressed
"All the firsts are just unbelievable," he said. "It's a good
place to hit your first one."
Cabrera made a nice running grab of Eric Hinske's fly ball
down the left-field line starting the seventh. Cabrera extended his
glove, caught the ball in the webbing, and his momentum carried him
into the first row of the stands -- reminiscent of Jeter's
startling, hurtling catch against the Red Sox on July 1, 2004, but
not as difficult or dramatic. "The padding helped me a lot, so it
was a nice fall," Cabrera said through a translator. ... Red Sox
LF Wily Mo Pena was not in the lineup, a day after straining his
right quadriceps while trying to get Jason Giambi's go-ahead hit in
the second game. ... Youkilis came out of the game with a jammed
right shoulder after Bernie Williams' knee hit him at first base in
the eighth. Youkilis said the injury wasn't major.