And they had the man to do it: The closest thing to a pitching ace that New York city has these days: Masahiro Tanaka.
Except Tanaka has one flaw: He gives up home runs. In the top of the 1st inning, he gave up a home run to Dustin Pedroia. And, at the rate the Yankees have been going, you could have been excused if, at that point, you thought that the Yankees were going to lose that game 1-0.
Other than that, Tanaka went 6 innings, allowing no runs, 2 hits and 1 walk. In the 4th inning, Starlin Castro doubled home Didi Gregorius, Austin Romine singled home Castro, and a single by Jacoby Ellsbury and an error by Boston center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. combined to allow Romine to score.
That was the extent of the scoring. Dellin Betances pitched a perfect 7th, Andrew Miller pitched a scoreless 8th, and Aroldis Chapman pitched a scoreless 9th.
And David Ortiz, the big fat lying cheating bastard, went 0-for-3 before Chapman walked him in the 9th. As he waddled off the field for a pinch-hitter, he got properly booed. A double play then ended it. Yankees 3, Red Sox 1. WP: Tanaka (7-2). SV: Chapman (18). LP: David Price (9-7).
So, the Yankees are now 45-46, 8 1/2 games behind the Baltimore Orioles in the American League Eastern Division, 9 in the loss column. They are 5 1/2 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays for the 2nd AL Wild Card slot.
There are 71 games remaining. That's 11 weeks. If the Yankees can gain an average of 1 game per week, they'll win the AL East. It doesn't sound so hard now, does it?
They just have to hit. They can't count on their starter going 6, and their "No Runs-DMC" bullpen going 3, and limiting the opposition to 1 run every game.
And they have to start now, because the 1st-place Orioles are coming into Yankee Stadium. Here's the projected pitching matchups:
* Tonight, 7:05 PM: Ivan Nova vs. Kevin Gausman.
* Tomorrow, 7:05 PM: Nathan Eovaldi vs. Vance Worley. Two guys who had been relegated to the bullpen, but both are now back in the starting rotation.
* Wednesday, 7:05 PM: Michael Pineda vs. Yovani Gallardo.
* Thursday, 1:05 PM: CC Sabathia vs. Chris Tillman.
Come on you Pinstripes! This is where we start our Playoff run!