Update (9:21 PM ET): It’s now 4-0 as Christian Vásquez was able to sneak a solo home run over the fence in right field off of Zach Britton in the top of the fourth inning.
The Red Sox got to CC Sabathia in the third inning of Tuesday night’s ALDS Game 4 in the Bronx. After Sabathia held the Sox scoreless in the first two frames, he led off frame number three by hitting Andrew Benintendi with a pitch (unintentionally). Steve Pearce followed up with a single to move Benintendi to third, who promptly scored on a J.D. Martinez sacrifice fly.
Given the circumstances, Yankees manager Aaron Boone probably should’ve had a reliever warming up after Sabathia hit Benintendi and certainly after Pearce singled. But no one stirred. Sabathia got Xander Bogaerts to ground out, bringing up Ian Kinsler. Sabathia uncorked a wild pitch, allowing Pearce to move to third. Kinsler then doubled to left field, plating Pearce to make the score 2-0. Eduardo Núñez brought Kinsler home with a single to left field to push the lead to three runs. Sabathia finally got out of the inning by inducing a ground out from Jackie Bradley, Jr.
Sabathia is certainly done after three innings, but he probably should’ve been done a lot sooner than that. Boone made some questionable decisions in Game 3 and his decision not to have a reliever warm up in the third inning of Game 4 will certainly be a hot topic of conversation, especially if the Yankees end up getting eliminated tonight.
The World Series champion Red Sox are scheduled to visit President Trump in the White House on February 15. Some have speculated that manager Álex Cora, who is from Puerto Rico and has been critical of Trump and has been a big factor in Hurricane Maria relief efforts, might not go as a form of protest. Thus far, nothing concrete has been reported on that front.
However, third baseman Rafael Devers says he isn’t going to join the Red Sox on their visit to the White House, Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston reports. Devers would prefer to focus on baseball, as the Red Sox open spring training on February 13 and position players have to report on February 17. Per Chris Mason, Devers also said via a translator, “The opportunity was presented and I just wasn’t compelled to go.”
Devers hails from the Dominican Republic and he, like many of Major League Baseball’s foreign-born player base, might not be happy about Trump’s immigration policies. Understandably, he is being tight-lipped about his motivation, but it wouldn’t be surprising if Devers is making a silent protest by choosing not to attend. He is thus far the only member of the team to bow out.
Devers, 22, hit .240/.298/.433 with 21 home runs, 66 RBI, and 59 runs scored in 490 plate appearances last season.
Last year, when the Astros visited Trump at the White House, they did so without Carlos Correa and Carlos Beltrán. Both are from Puerto Rico. It is certainly not unprecedented for individual players to opt out of the White House visit.
No word yet on what food will be served during Boston’s trip to the nation’s capital, but the smart money is on hamberders.