MLB playoffs: Seven-run inning dooms Yankees, Red Sox take 2-1 ALDS lead

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The Boston Red Sox exploded for seven runs in the fourth inning to turn ALDS Game 3 into a laugher. With a lopsided 16-1 victory, Boston took a 2-1 lead over the New York Yankees in the series.

Though the Red Sox rallied for a run in the second and two more in the third, the game still appeared within reach for the Yankees when starter Luis Severino took the mound to start the fourth. But Severino, who had been hit hard all night, allowed two quick singles and a walk before leaving the game with the bases loaded and no outs.

Yanks manager Aaron Boone made the curious decision to follow Severino with Lance Lynn, who pitched to a 4.77 ERA in the regular season and who, as a starting pitcher, is generally unaccustomed to entering games with runners on base. Lynn promptly walked Mookie Betts on four pitches to force in a run. Andrew Benintendi followed with a bases-clearing double, and Lynn — presumably in the game to give the Yankees length — left the game two batters later, after a Xander Bogaerts single.

Chad Green relieved Lynn and could not stunt the Red Sox’ rally. A Steve Pearce single plated Benintendi, and a Brock Holt triple tacked on Boston’s sixth and seventh runs of the inning and extended the Red Sox’ lead to 10-0.

Hard-throwing former Yankee Nathan Eovaldi started for Boston and made good use of his large, early lead. Though the right-hander was hardly overpowering, he kept the big-swinging Yankees in the park and, with the help of strong defensive play behind him, worked efficiently to give Boston seven strong innings and take the strain off a Sox bullpen that needed to cover 6 ⅓ frames on Saturday.

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