The Boston Red Sox had a great opportunity to win Game 1 of Tuesday's doubleheader against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium, but the bullpen couldn't finish the deal.
Christian Vazquez's go-ahead home run gave Boston a 3-2 lead in the top of the fifth inning. But a disastrous bottom of the fifth inning during which the Red Sox gave up multiple hits and walks allowed the Yankees to take a 5-3 lead, which they protected in the seven-inning victory.
Overall, the Red Sox bullpen allowed three hits, three earned runs and gave up six walks over three innings. It also struck out five.
Unfortunately for the Red Sox, bullpen issues have been a common theme over the last few weeks. During that span, the Red Sox have seen their lead atop the American League East disappear. Boston currently sits four games behind the Tampa Bay Rays for first place and leads the Yankees by just one game entering Game 2 of the doubleheader.
Just how bad has the Red Sox bullpen performed over the last two weeks or so? MLB.com's Ian Browne tweeted some stats that paint a pretty ugly picture for the bullpen:
The Red Sox need their bullpen to improve ASAP or this team could have trouble making the playoffs, which seemed kind of unthinkable about a month ago.