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Red Sox host rival Yankees on Sunday
By: Staff Writer - StatFox
Published: 8/18/2017  at  7:15:00 PM
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First pitch: Sunday, 1:30 p.m. ET
Line: N/A, Total: N/A

The Yankees will be hoping to make up ground with a victory over the Red Sox in Boston on Sunday afternoon.

New York is currently playing some excellent baseball, but so is Boston right now. That is a very bad sign for the Yankees, as they have been a hot-and-cold team all year. Almost every one of their hot streaks has been followed up by a significant stretch of losing, which is awful when considering that the Red Sox have matched them in wins as of late. Boston is pulling away with the AL East at this point, but a series victory by New York could obviously change things a lot. The Yankees have a bunch of games against the Red Sox left this season, and these series will be their most important of the year. The starters in this Sunday matchup are going to be RHP Sonny Gray (7-7, 3.37 ERA, 111 K) for New York and RHP Doug Fister (2-6, 5.56 ERA, 38 K) for Boston. Gray has been good since heading to New York, allowing only two earned runs in each of his three starts for the Yankees. The Bronx Bombers will definitely feel like they have the advantage on the mound in this one, as Fister has been absolutely awful for the entire season.

The Yankees can really use a win on Sunday night, and they will definitely have a good chance at earning that if Sonny Gray pitches like he has in his first three starts with the team. Gray has allowed only two earned runs in each of his three starts in pinstripes, and he has not yet even shown his best stuff thus far. Gray is fully capable of throwing eight or so innings of shutout ball, and heís due for a performance like that soon. Itíd be huge for New York if that type of game were to come in this outing on Sunday. Offensively, two Yankees to keep an eye on here are 3B Todd Frazier and 1B Chase Headley. The two of them are far from the best hitters in the lineup, but both have had success against Doug Fister in their careers. They are a combined 9-for-19 with three RBI against Fister in their careers, and it would be big if they can add some production here. When guys like Frazier and Headley are hitting, there is far less pressure on stars like OF Aaron Judge and C Gary Sanchez.

The Red Sox have been one of the best teams in baseball over the past month or so, and they are hoping to put that on full display on Sunday. A win over the Yankees at this point in the year is as big as any victory, as they are currently doing what they can to pull away in the AL East here. That means that Doug Fister will need to pitch pretty well on Sunday, as the Sox canít give away free wins to their top rival. If he allows five earned runs in 4.1 innings of work like he did against the Indians on Aug. 14 then Boston will be in trouble. On offense, one guy that might provide a spark here is 1B Mitch Moreland. Moreland is 6-for-20 with four homers and six RBI against Sonny Gray in his career. If he can go deep then it would be huge for Boston here.

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