Soriano looks to continue his torrid pace at the plate in support of red-hot Hiroki Kuroda as the visiting Yankees try to hand the Red Sox a season-high fourth consecutive defeat Saturday.
New York (63-58) had dropped six of the first nine with Boston this season before Soriano hit a three-run homer for one of his three hits and Mark Reynolds delivered a two-run shot in his Yankee debut during Friday's 10-3 win at Fenway Park."It was a big win for us," winning pitcher Andy Pettitte said. "We've got to win this series. We've got to win a lot of series."
Fourth in the East and still contending in the wild-card race, the Yankees have won six of eight and sit 7 1/2 games back of a Red Sox (72-52) team that's dropped six of eight."Two swings cost us five runs," said Boston manager John Farrell , whose club also committed three errors for the second time in three games. "This wasn't one of our more sharp efforts."
Soriano has carried the Yankees' offense of late, going 13 for 18 with five homers and 18 RBIs in four games.
"I think the motivation (is) going back to the Yankees, trying to help the team win," said Soriano, hitting .320 with eight home runs and 26 RBIs in 19 games since coming over from the Cubs.
Reynolds, who signed with New York on Thursday after he was released by Cleveland, had two hits and three RBIs. He hit .125 with no homers, two RBIs and struck out 28 times in his final 21 games for the Indians, but is batting .321 with six RBIs versus Boston in 2013.
Kuroda (11-7, 2.33 ERA) is 4-1 with a 0.94 ERA in his last seven starts and ranks second in the AL in ERA. For the fifth time during that stretch, he did not allow a run while giving up three hits and striking out seven in eight innings of a 2-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Monday."I don't know if you can expect anyone to be that dominant in this day and age when there's a lot of ways teams can score runs, but he's just been brilliant," manager Joe Girardi said.
The right-hander allowed two runs in seven innings of a 5-2 win at Boston on July 20 to improve to 1-2 with a 4.61 ERA against the Red Sox this season.
Scheduled Boston starter John Lackey (7-10, 3.32) struck out seven in that contest opposite Kuroda, but also allowed four runs and 10 hits in 6 1-3 innings. That defeat began a stretch where he's 0-4 with a 4.96 ERA in his last four starts.
The right-hander dropped his second straight after he yielded four runs and seven hits in seven innings o f a 4-3 loss at Kansas City on Sunday.
Boston has totaled 14 runs and stranded 47 runners while losing four of five.
Slugger David Ortiz is 4 for 24 in the last six, but 6 for 9 with a homer versus Kuroda.
New York's Robinson Cano is batting .425 during an 11-game hitting streak, and .350 with three doubles in his last 20 at-bats against Lackey.
Amidst frequent booing and taunts from the Fenway crowd, Alex Rodriguez went 2 for 4 with a walk Friday. He has hit safely in nine of 10 games this season.
|Jackie Bradley Jr.||0||.000||0||0||0||0||0||1.000||1.000||.000|
|New York Yankees|
|August 03, 2013||Derek Jeter||15-Day DL||Strained right calf|
|August 03, 2013||Derek Jeter||Day-to-Day||Calf|
|July 27, 2013||Travis Hafner||15-Day DL||Strained right rotator cuff|
|July 23, 2013||Luis Cruz||15-Day DL||Sprained right knee|
|July 20, 2013||Zoilo Almonte||15-Day DL||Sprained left ankle|
|July 19, 2013||Zoilo Almonte||Day-to-Day||Left game - left ankle sprain|
|Boston Red Sox|
|August 08, 2013||Brandon Snyder||15-Day DL||Ulnar neuritis, right elbow|
|August 05, 2013||Matt Thornton||15-Day DL||Strained right oblique|
|August 04, 2013||Matt Thornton||Day-to-Day||Right oblique soreness|
|July 19, 2013||Shane Victorino||Day-to-Day||Left game - left hamstring tightness|
|July 13, 2013||Andrew Bailey||15-Day DL||Right shoulder strain|
|July 09, 2013||Alex Wilson||15-Day DL||Sprained right thumb|
BOSTON (AP) -- John Lackey 's won-loss record hardly shows how good he's been for the Red Sox this season.
The team's most dependable starter, Lackey held down New York's resurgent offense and helped Boston break a three-game skid by beating the Yankees 6-1 on Saturday.
"I think in this case the record doesn't show how well he's pitched and how consistent he's been," manager John Farrell said. "In a couple of occasions he's pitched on the wrong day and gone up against a starter that's held us in check. To his credit, he's earning everything that he's getting right now due to the commitment he's made in the offseason and how well he's pitched."
Lackey (8-10), who missed last season while rehabbing from elbow surgery, has held opponents to three or fewer runs while pitching at least six innings in 14 starts, the most such outings on the club.
"You can't do a whole lot about that," he said of his losing record. "You've just got to go out and keep the game close. The record's kind of out of my hands."
Jacoby Ellsbury had three hits, David Ortiz homered and the Red Sox rebounded from a 10-3 loss with 14 hits.
"The biggest thing is our pitching and defense," shortstop Stephen Drew said. "If we have that, we have a chance to win every day."
But on Saturday, Lackey received some extra run support, too. Four times in his previous seven starts, Boston didn't score while he was in the game.
"Lackey was outstanding today," said Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez , booed loudly again during each at-bat. "Threw the ball very well. He's having a big year for them. And Papi, he's the heart and soul of that team. Obviously had another big day."
Ortiz, Shane Victorino , Will Middlebrooks , Mike Carp and Daniel Nava each had two hits for the AL East leaders, who won for only the third time in nine games.
Lackey relied mostly on his fastball, slider and changeup. He gave up one run and six hits while walking three over 6 2-3 innings to halt a four-game losing streak, the longest of his career. He was 0-4 with a 4.96 ERA in his previous five starts.
"He seemed to get the big out when he needed to," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "We got some baserunners on him, but he seemed to get the big out when he needed to."
Alfonso Soriano extended his hitting tear with two singles in four at-bats for the Yankees, but was held without an RBI after matching a major league record with 18 over his previous four games. He is 15 for 22 (.682) in his last five games with five homers and nine runs scored.
The Yankees had scored 10 or more runs in three of their last four. New York lost for just the second time in seven games.
Hiroki Kuroda (11-8) matched a season high by giving up five runs - three earned - and 11 hits. He struck out six and did not walk a batter in 5 2-3 innings. The 38-year-old right-hander was 4-1 with a 0.94 ERA in his previous seven starts.
Leading 3-1 in the sixth, Boston added two runs and chased Kuroda. Jarrod Saltalamacchia had an RBI single and scored on Ellsbury's double off the base of the right-field wall. Ortiz homered into the center-field seats off reliever Adam Warren in the seventh.
The Red Sox took advantage of an error and a missed call to jump ahead 3-0 in the fourth. With runners at the corners and one out, first baseman Lyle Overbay fielded Drew's grounder and fired wide of second. Yankees shortstop Eduardo Nunez had to jump to catch the ball and threw late to first, with Ortiz scoring from third to make it 1-0.
Carp, who was safe at second, then stole third on the front end of double steal, though replays showed Rodriguez made the tag in time. Umpire Bill Welke, who ejected Carp for arguing a called third strike Friday night, pointed that he was safe. Middlebrooks and Ellsbury followed with consecutive RBI singles.
"With the runners on, I wanted to minimize the damage," Kuroda said through a translator. "But I couldn't do that. ... It was a bad outing."
Ichiro Suzuki 's run-scoring grounder cut it to 3-1 in the fifth. New York had runners on second and third with none out after a single by Overbay and a double by Chris Stewart , but Lackey retired the next three hitters on grounders.
NOTES: Kuroda allowed a season-high 11 hits. ... Robinson Cano went 0 for 4, snapping his 11-game hitting streak. ... Yankees SS Derek Jeter , on the 15-day DL with a strained right calf, continued taking batting practice and fielding grounders at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla., but is not running the bases. ... Boston 1B Mike Napoli was scratched from the original lineup because of a sore left foot. Farrell had planned to give Victorino the day off because he's had a sore hamstring, but decided to play him with Napoli sidelined. The switch-hitting Victorino continued to hit right-handed against right-handed pitching due to the sore leg. ... Boston 2B Dustin Pedroia turned 30. He fouled a ball off his left foot in the eighth and limped for a bit before finishing the at-bat. He was replaced on defense. Farrell said Pedroia was sore, but a scan at the ballpark came back "negative." ... Boston sends RHP Ryan Dempster (6-8, 4.50 ERA) to the mound against LHP CC Sabathia (10-10, 4.66) in the series finale Sunday night.