The Yankees gave Aroldis Chapman the richest contract for a relief pitcher ever at five years, $86 million for nights like Sunday, when they want to count on the flame-throwing lefty to shut the door with a one-run lead against the rival Red Sox.
Chapman let his team down at a critical juncture. After blowing a save by allowing a tying solo homer to Rafael Devers in the ninth, Chapman was charged with a run in the 10th inning and took the loss and the Yankees took a devastating 3-2 loss to the Red Sox, falling 5.5 games behind Boston for the AL East lead. Chapman has given up six runs (five earned) in six appearances this season against the Red Sox and took a blown save and loss in Boston on July 14.
With one out in the 10th, Chapman hit Jackie Bradley Jr. and walked Eduardo Nuñez before giving way to Tommy Kahnle, gave up an RBI single to Andrew Benintendi with the bases loaded. Todd Frazier’s sacrifice fly in the eighth had given the Yanks a 2-1 lead.
The Yankees managed to get through Chris Sale with the game tied 1-1. Sale struck out 12 in seven innings, allowing one run on four hits and two walks, but his offense only provided him with two hits. In three outings against the Yanks this season, Sale has given up four runs (three earned) in 22 2/3 innings with 35 strikeouts. For his career, he has a 1.18 ERA in 76 1/3 innings against the Yanks.
Jordan Montgomery – who last week was sent down to Triple-A before being called up once CC Sabathia got hurt and who took a batting-practice ball to the head on Saturday – was able to match wits with Sale for as long as he was in the game. Montgomery have up one run in 5 2/3 innings, allowing two hits and three walks with four strikeouts.
PLAY OF THE GAME
Just three pitches into the game, Aaron Hicks made a spectacular catch on an Eduardo Nuñez fly ball, sprinting to the warning track and diving to make the grab and rob the ex-Yankee of an extra-base hit.
Devers homered on a 103 mile-an-hour fastball in the ninth to extend the game before Chapman put two runners on in the 10th.
STAR OF THE GAME
After hitting three homers with eight RBI over the first two games of the series, Benintendi delivered a crushing blow to the Yanks in the 10th with his go-ahead RBI single. He finished 1-for-4 with a walk.
STAT OF THE GAME
30. With his swinging strikeout in the fourth inning, Aaron Judge extended his streak of games with a strikeout to 30. He is two shy of Adam Dunn’s record (excluding pitchers) of 32 straight games with a strikeout, set in 2012. Judge went 1-for-4 with a walk and three strikeouts on Sunday.
Brett Gardner went 0-for-5 with three strikeouts. The left fielder is just 8-for-48 at the plate in August.
Chase Headley singled with one out in the fifth and scored on Austin Romine’s first career triple. Headley, who also led off the ninth inning with a walk, is 7-for-23 in his career against Sale.
Yankees vs. Mets
Monday, Aug. 14, 7:05 p.m. TV: YES/SNY/ESPN
TBD vs. RHP Rafael Montero (1-8, 6.06)