The Yankees held serve with the Orioles by beating the Red Sox 2-0 in a breezy 3 hours, 11 minutes on Thursday night.
The win kept the Yankees in a tie for first place in the AL East.
It was the lowest scoring game between the two teams in 59 games dating back to Aug. 7, 2009. That contest was scoreless until the bottom of the 15th, when Alex Rodriguez hit a two-run homer to end it.
Phil Hughes was the person most responsible for making this a (relatively) quick affair. He pitched 7 1/3 scoreless innings, walking just one batter in a 95-pitch effort. The Red Sox walked seven, in comparison. Five of those came from starter Felix Doubront, but the lefty turned in a solid outing anyway, allowing two runs in 6 1/3 innings. It was his fourth quality start against the Yankees this year.
Andruw Jones and Derek Jeter knocked in the runs for the Yankees. Jeter was used as a DH tonight after leaving Wednesday’s game with a bone bruise in his left ankle.
The Red Sox were missing their best healthy hitter. Dustin Pedroia left the team last night to be wife his wife when she gave birth today.
The Yankees appear to have moved on from free agent Manny Machado this winter, but could they be turning their attention to Rockies superstar Nolan Arenado? That’s the idea floated by Andy Martino of SNY, who hears that GM Brian Cashman has been involved in recent discussions concerning the third baseman. No official comments have been made to the press yet, though, and it’s not clear whether the Yankees would prefer to pursue Arenado prior to the 2019 season or partway through it.
The 27-year-old infielder earned his fourth consecutive All-Star nomination, Silver Slugger, and Gold Glove award in 2018 after slashing .297/.374/.561 with 38 home runs, a .935 OPS, and 5.7 fWAR across 673 plate appearances. There’s no question he’s provided immense value to Colorado’s lineup over the last half-decade, and his consistency and incredible power at the plate helped form the basis of the record $30 million arbitration figure he presented to the team last week. The Rockies countered at $24 million, however, and in doing so may have jeopardized their chances of convincing the infielder to forego free agency in 2020 and take a long-term deal instead.
Assuming he declines to negotiate an extension with the Rockies, Arenado’s decorated résumé and career-best 2018 numbers should attract plenty of interest around the league — a reality that could put considerable pressure on the Yankees (or any other interested party) to finesse a deal sooner rather than later. For now, the club is prepared to enter the 2019 season with hot-hitting third baseman Miguel Andújar, whom Martino speculates would be the “centerpiece” of any trade with Colorado.