Nathan Eovaldi

Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports

It's looking like a Boston Massacre as Eovaldi, Red Sox once again silence Yankees

John Tomase
August 04, 2018 - 6:36 pm

The Red Sox acquired Nathan Eovaldi when it became clear they lacked the pitching to finish August, thanks to an Eduardo Rodriguez sprained ankle and Steven Wright bum knee, as well as the ineffectiveness of Drew Pomeranz.

The stopgap starter seems to have grander plans for himself, however. After tossing seven shutout innings in his Red Sox debut vs. the Twins, Eovaldi took things to another level in start No. 2 on Saturday.

Facing the organization that put him on the map during a breakout 14-win 2014 season, Eovaldi was magnificent in a 4-1 victory over the Yankees to extend a magical weekend at Fenway Park.

Following Rick Porcello's one-hit victory over New York on Friday -- which itself followed a 15-7 annihilation in the series opener -- Eovaldi shut out his former team over eight brilliant innings.

Eovaldi limited New York to three hits and a walk, striking out four. Following in the footsteps of Porcello, who tossed an 86-pitch complete game, he was also efficient, needing only 93 pitches to record his 24 outs.

"Outstanding," said manager Alex Cora. "His stuff is probably one of the best in the big leagues. The fact that he can use his stuff in the edges of the strike zone is impressive. There was some traffic and he kept the ball down, he got the groundball double play, he was able to expand up, use his breaking ball, frontdoor cutter, that was another great outing by Nate."

The victory gives the Red Sox an 8 1/2-game lead in the American League East, their largest of the season. It also kept the Yankees in a downward spiral of misery that has seen one of baseball's best offenses turn punchless against a Red Sox pitching staff that's simply laying waste to rival lineups.

"I feel like we all feed off one another," Eovaldi said. "Rick last night with his performance, you want to repeat that and go out there and get the guys back in the dugout as fast as possible and keep them on the ropes."

As was the case on Friday, this one ended early. Yankees rookie Chance Adams made his big-league debut and the Red Sox almost immediately made him pay, with Mitch Moreland's two-run homer in the first inning giving the Red Sox an immediate 2-0 lead.

That was one more run than they'd need, thanks to Eovaldi, who didn't allow his first hit until former teammate Brett Gardner led off the fourth with a clean single to right.

Eovaldi completed that inning without incident before J.D. Martinez made it 3-0 with his 33rd homer of the season in the bottom of the frame. The Red Sox added another run in the seventh when a replay review turned Sandy Leon's foul flair down the left field line into an RBI double off the chalk.

Craig Kimbrel made things interesting in the ninth by retiring the first two batters before allowing a run and retiring Greg Bird with the bases loaded to end it.

The Red Sox can complete the sweep on Sunday night when David Price takes the mound against right-hander Masahiro Tanaka.

How's this for rolling? Since losing two of three to the Yankees at the start of July and falling into a virtual tie for first place, the Red Sox have gone 22-5. The Yankees, meanwhile, are 14-14 in that span.