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MLB Rivalry Weekend: Sox vs. Yankees and Cardinals vs. Cubs

It’s still early in the MLB season but not too early to have a weekend with rivalry play. One series on baseball fans’ watch list is the New York Yankees (5-6) vs. Boston Red Sox (5-6). The four-game series kicked off on Thursday and so far it’s tied at 1-1.

After getting the first win on Thursday, 4-1, the Yankees fell to the Red Sox on Friday, 4-2. Lefty Jon Lester got his first win of the season. He allowed a home run to Alfonso Soriano (No. 408 in career home runs) in the second inning and overall gave up six hits, two walks and six strikeouts for the night. Lester now sits at 12-5 over his 27 starts versus New York.

Jon Lester

Jon Lester

The Yankees had a 1-0 lead until the sixth when Jonny Gomes got the Red Sox on the board with a home run off lefty CC Sabathia but that was only the beginning. Grady Sizemore took the mound and hit a three-run homer to give the Red Sox a 4-1 advantage.

Sizemore said of the inning via the Associated Press, “Good to have a rally there in that inning. We’ve kind of struggled with Jon on the mound. It’s nice to pick him up and get some runs for him.”

New York came back in the eighth inning with another run but the Red Sox held on and kept the lead for the win.

Sabathia was on the mound for seven innings, giving up four runs and six hits for New York. He struck out nine and walked two. In his last three starts, he’s allowed at least four runs and sits with a 6.63 ERA. He continues to struggle with a declining fastball.

Junichi Tazawa pitched 1 1/3 innings for a one-hit relief while Edward Mujica got his first save this season from his play in the ninth.

Boston closer Koji Uehara is day-to-day, sitting out on Friday due to right shoulder stiffness.

On Saturday, righty John Lackey (2-0, 1.38) will take the mound for Boston while righty Hiroki Kuroda (1-1, 2.92) will do so for New York.

The Yankees will get the win (-106, 8.5 o/u). Looking ahead, both teams sit at 14/1 to win the 2014 World Series.

Over in St. Louis, the Cardinals (5-5) are hosting the Chicago Cubs (4-6) for a three-game series and on Friday, the visiting team got a 6-3 win.

Sitting at 3-3 at the end of the ninth, the game went into extra innings. Trevor Rosenthal was on the mound for the Cardinals when Welington Castillo nailed a three-run home run for the win in the 11th. Nate Schierholtz started the inning with a double and moved on a sacrifice followed by Starlin Castro getting on base from an intentional walk.

Jeff Samardzija began the game for the Cubs on the mound where he remained for seven innings and exited with a a 1.29 ERA. Samardzija allowed the Cardinals only one run but gave up six hits, four strikeouts and no walks.

Jeff Samardzjia

Jeff Samardzjia

While his outing gave him an opportunity to work with some runs he again did not get the win for a ninth consecutive game. His last one came against the San Diego Padres on Aug. 24, 2013 and the most recent time his team scored for him came on Sept. 17, 2013 against the Milwaukee Brewers on Sept. 17, 2013.

Samardzija said of the game via the Associated Press, “You keep pitching and giving your team a chance to win. Everyone is trying to do their jobs and sometimes balls find holes, and sometimes they don’t.”

Hector Rondon got the save–his first for his career–while Cardinals starter Joe Kelly gave up one unearned run over six innings.

In Game 2 on Saturday, righty Adam Wainwright (1-1, 1.29 ERA) takes the mound for St. Louis against righty Carlos Villanueva (1-2, 4.26).

St. Louis gets the win (-219, 7 o/u) and sits at 17/2 to win this year’s World Series while the Cubs are 100/1.





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