Lackey, Red Sox shut down Yankees
BOSTON — New York Yankees starter Michael Pineda was the early story but Boston Red Sox right-hander John Lackey stole the show at frigid Fenway Park on Wednesday night.
Pineda was tossed in the second inning of the Red Sox’s 5-1 win for having a foreign substance on his neck. Then, Lackey, stopping the bleeding for himself and the Boston rotation, struck out 11 in eight innings to raise his record to 3-2.
The Red Sox starters had allowed 22 earned runs in 24 2/3 innings over the previous five games, with Lackey yielding six earned runs in each of his last two starts, one against the Yankees. But Wednesday, he gave up only a sixth-inning run and seven hits, walking none in leading Boston (10-12) to its second win in six games against their top rivals this season.
The 11 Ks were one off Lackey’s career high.
Righty Koji Uehara worked the ninth in a non-save situation, striking out three after giving up a single.
Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, who had an 11-game hitting streak snapped, was guilty of two poor fielding plays, failing to grab catcher A.J. Pierzynski’s grounder up the middle as the second Boston run scored in the first inning. That was ruled a hit, but Jeter’s throwing error led to two unearned runs in the third.
First baseman Mike Napoli, reaching base for the 18th straight game, had a pop RBI double and two singles to lead the Red Sox attack — on a night that began at 50 degrees with a 24 miles-per-hour wind that left it feeling at or below the freezing mark.
Yankees center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, who had a big night on his return to Boston Tuesday, was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts against Lackey — as the Yankees fell to 12-9.
Pineda (2-2) was charged with two runs in 1 2/3 innings, raising his ERA from 1.00 to 1.83.
The Red Sox did not complain when Pineda clearly had a substance on his right hand in New York on April 10. On Wednesday, he gave up two runs in the first inning, when the substance was not obvious. He returned to the mound with a shine on his neck and had two out, nobody on and a 1-2 count on right fielder Grady Sizemore when Red Sox manager John Farrell came out and spoke to home plate umpire Gerry Davis.
The four umpires met at the mound and first examined Pineda’s glove and then the ball before Davis, the crew chief, checked his neck. Davis then threw the pitcher out after 40 pitches. The rule book does not call for a mandatory suspension for putting a substance on the baseball, but Tampa Bay’s Joel Peralta got eight games in 2012.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi, standing by the robotic camera in the dugout that apparently was the one that showed the substance, was seen fooling with the camera and actually turned it around to make it face the other way.
Notes: Yankees RHP Ivan Nova, who has been advised to have Tommy John surgery, wants a second opinion, from Dr. James Andrews. ... Red Sox DH David Ortiz made his 1,643rd appearance at the position on Wednesday, tying him with Harold Baines for the all-time lead. ... RHP Masahiro Tanaka became the 299th pitcher to give up an Ortiz homer on Tuesday night and ESPN Stats calculated the impressive blast at 482 feet, the longest by a Red Sox hitter in nine seasons. ... New York LHP CC Sabathia faces LHP Felix Doubront in the series finale on Thursday night. RF Shane Victorino could return today after missing the first 22 games with a hamstring injury. Wilson is likely to return to Triple-A with Victorino’s return. ... Boston Marathon men’s winner Meb Keflezighi, wearing No. 26.2, threw out the first pitch.