Yankees ride Grand Slam past Boston in series opener | Main Takeaways

josh donaldson, yankees

The New York Yankees overcame the Boston Red Sox in the first game of a four-game series on Thursday evening. The Bombers hit their third Grand Slam in two games, courtesy of Josh Donaldson in the top of the 3rd inning. Donaldson smashed a fastball to dead center field, driving in Joey Gallo, Gleyber Torres, and Giancarlo Stanton.

The Grand Slam gave the Yankees a 4–0 lead, with Aaron Hicks tallying a solo shot immediately after. In fact, Hicks enjoyed a two-hit performance, elevating his batting average to .234 on the season with a 35% on-base rate.

However, starting pitcher Gerrit Cole allowed Boston to answer right back, giving up a two-run shot to Rafael Devers in the bottom of the 3rd and another three-run shot to Devers in the bottom of the 5th. On the day, Devers recorded five RBIs and two homers, elevating his average to .330 on the season with a 38.7% on-base rate.

The Yankees’ offense did just enough:

In total, the Yankees finished with seven hits and six runs, striking out seven times. Three batters walked away with at least two hits: Torres, Donaldson, and Hicks.

Torres has been fantastic as of late, sitting with a .264 average on the season. So far this month, Torres hosts a .500 batting average with a 60% on-base rate.

Luckily for the Yankees, the bullpen stepped up big in relief of Cole. Wandy Peralta struck out two batters over 1.1 innings, forcing Devers to ground out in his third at-bat. Michael King allowed one walk and struck out one batter to finish the 8th inning before Clay Holmes entered and dominated. Holmes tossed 10 pitches, striking out one batter and easily collecting the save.

The Yankees will now look ahead to Friday evening with Nestor Cortes on the mound. Cortes give up just one earned run over three hits in his last outing against Cleveland, bouncing back after two consecutive poor performances.

Cortes will be in a far more hostile environment in Fenway on Friday, but he’s got the stuff to shut them down.

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