Red Sox

Chapman walks in winning run, Red Sox beat Yankees, 5-4

Chapman walks in winning run, Red Sox beat Yankees, 5-4

BOSTON - The Yankees and Red Sox have had their share of games decided by late rallies and towering home runs.

This time, it came down to a free pass.

Aroldis Chapman walked in the winning run without recording an out in the ninth inning, handing Boston a 5-4 win over New York on Friday night.

The Yankees hard-throwing closer gave up two runs in the ninth for his third blown save. New York entered tied for the major league lead with 17 blown saves.

"That happens to all pitchers," Chapman said. "Sometimes you get into a game and you have an inning like that where you're not as sharp as you would like to be."

Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia started the comeback with consecutive singles and a successful double steal. Betts scored when second baseman Ronald Torreyes booted Xander Bogaerts' groundball.

After an intentional walk to Hanley Ramirez, Chapman (2-1) walked Andrew Benintendi on five pitches to bring home Pedroia.

"That 3-1 pitch, I was about 90 percent take," Benintendi said. "It was gonna take a perfect pitch to swing at it."

It was New York's fourth walk-off loss of the season. The Yankees fell for just the second time this season when leading after eight innings. Chapman entered with a 6.75 ERA over his past five appearances.

Robby Scott (1-1) got the win for the Red Sox, who got their first victory over the Yankees at home this season. It was Boston's first game-ending walk since Sept. 23, 2000 against Baltimore.

Gary Sanchez had a two-run home run and an RBI single for the Yankees.

New York, which entered the four-game series 3 1/2 games behind AL East-leading Boston, had won four of the five previous meetings against its rival this season.

Drew Pomeranz was on the mound for Boston's lone victory this season against the Yankees last month in New York. Pomeranz had seven strikeouts Friday, but allowed some pitches to get up in the zone. New York took advantage, scoring three runs in the fifth.

While Pomeranz was off, manager John Farrell liked the relentlessness his teammates showed at the plate to stay in the game. Most of the praise went to Ramirez. He had two hits and put the Red Sox up early, crushing his 14th home run over the left-center field fence in the third.

"He's swinging the bat like he did the second half of last year," Farrell said. "To be quite frank, we need that type of production, and he's certainly very capable."

The Red Sox had a chance to get the lead back with runners on the corners in the seventh, but Benintendi's long fly ball to center was reeled in on the warning track by Jacoby Ellsbury.

The Yankees struck first, getting on the board in their half of the third inning. Sanchez hit a hard liner that deflected off Bogaerts' glove at shortstop and fell into left field, scoring Chase Headley. New York pulled within 3-2 in fifth on an RBI single by Brett Gardner to set up Sanchez's go-ahead homer.

Craig Kimbrel rejects qualifying offer, will enter free agency

Craig Kimbrel rejects qualifying offer, will enter free agency

To the surprise of almost no one, Craig Kimbrel rejected his $17.9 million qualifrying offer from the Red Sox and will test the free agent market for a bigger contract. 

Kimbrel is reportedly looking for a contract worth around $80 million, and this move will allow the Red Sox to receive a draft pick if Kimbrel signs elsewhere. 

Kimbrel recorded 42 saves for the Red Sox on the way to a World Series championship. However, Kimbrel was shaky in the postseason. He allowed seven earned runs in the playoffs but never lost a game in the ninth. 

Kimbrel may fetch big money this offseason as a big-name closer, so the Red Sox will have to decide whether its worth the long term commitment to retain his services. 

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Joe Kelly hopes to stay with Red Sox for rest of his career

Joe Kelly hopes to stay with Red Sox for rest of his career

Joe Kelly had an up-and-down 2018 season with the Red Sox. 

He started the season strong, solidifying himself as a key set up artist for closer Craig Kimbrel. But then he fell off to the point where Red Sox fans did not know if they could count on him in the postseason. 

Kelly finished the year with a 4.39 ERA, only to become one of the best relievers in baseball during the playoffs. In 11.1 innings, Kelly posted a 1.59 ERA with 16 strikeouts. 

Now, the 30-year old right hander is a free agent due for a considerable pay day. Howwever, Kelly told Jim Rome he doesn't see himself playing anywhere other than Boston. 

I love being apart of the team and the coaching staff we have... Everyone gets along so well and I don’t even feel like a free agent, I still feel like a part of the Boston Red Sox. It's a place I feel like I’m going to be the rest of my career. Free agency is going to be fun to see what teams are interested in me, but hopefully I can be a Red Sox for the rest of my career. 

We don't know if the Red Sox plan to spend the money necessary on Kelly or if Kimbrel's sitation will be the deciding factor in Kelly coming back, but at least we know where the releiver wants to be. 

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