From 7 ½ back to one ahead.
Not bad work in less than three weeks.
The Yankees continued an absurdly hot, not to mention historic, stretch Wednesday night, rallying for a 9-6 victory over the Red Sox in front of a sellout crowd of 47,088 that shook the Stadium in the late innings at an October volume.
“A playoff atmosphere,” Aaron Judge said.
The Yankees (26-10) trailed 6-5 going into the bottom of the eighth before getting a two-run triple by Brett Gardner off closer Craig Kimbrel and a two-run bomb by Judge. They won their eighth straight and 17th game in 18 tries, their best stretch since going 21-1 from May 27-June 18, 1953.
The Yankees have outscored the opposition 110-45 in the surge. They took a one-game lead over the Red Sox (25-11), who have cooled significantly after a 17-2 start. It was the Yankees’ 10th comeback win of the season.
“We all have a lot of confidence in each other that we’re going to get the job done,” Gardner said. “Doesn’t matter if we’re down one run or four or five runs, we feel like we’re within striking distance.”
Neil Walker led off the eighth against Matt Barnes with a double to left, improving to 6-for-15 in his last six games. Miguel Andujar’s groundout to second moved Walker to third. After Gleyber Torres walked, Alex Cora brought on Kimbrel, who came in with nine saves and a 1.23 ERA, for a possible five-out save. Gardner, in an 8-for-63 skid, had already doubled twice. He got ahead 3-and-0 before the count went full. On the seventh pitch of the at-bat, Gardner slashed one into the gap in left-center for a two-run triple that gave the Yankees a 7-6 lead.
“We know that we’re good in here, we know that we’re good in every facet of the game,” Walker said. “You know at some point, it slows down. But we hope that’s not for a very, very long time. You don’t see any panic, ever. No matter what the situation is.”
Judge followed with the dagger, a two-run shot to center that made it 9-6 and gave him nine homers.
“I couldn’t hear anything,” Judge said of rounding the bases. “Just running off adrenaline there. Feel like a little kid out there. It’s pretty cool.”
Aroldis Chapman pitched a scoreless ninth for his ninth save.
The rally saved Chad Green from the loss.
Green, who came in with a 1.96 ERA in 15 appearances, relieved Masahiro Tanaka with a runner on third and one out in the sixth. He allowed a sacrifice fly to Mitch Moreland, who homered earlier, that trimmed the Yankees’ lead to 5-4. Sent out for a second inning, Green recorded two outs before walking Andrew Benintendi, who had homered off Tanaka in the fifth. Hanley Ramirez destroyed a hanging slider to left for his fourth homer, and 13th of his career against the Yankees, to give Boston a 6-5 lead. The DH had gone 19 straight games without a home run.
Tanaka and Rick Porcello had similar lines. Tanaka allowed four runs and eight hits, including two homers, in 5 1/3 innings. Porcello allowed five runs and eight hits over 5 1/3.
Chasen Shreve started the eighth by allowing a leadoff walk to Moreland and a double to Eduardo Nuñez. But the Red Sox failed to capitalize, which turned out to be critical. Shreve struck out Rafael Devers, and righty Jonathan Holder struck out Sandy Leon. After intentionally walking Mookie Betts to load the bases, Holder got Benintendi to ground out.
“That’s just who those guys are,” Aaron Boone said of his red-hot club. “They expect to be really good, they expect to be a great team. It’s not so much that you’re chasing results every day, it’s just you’re coming to work and you’re coming to grind the other team down, and they’ve done a great job of that.”
Yankees’ record, best in MLB
Wins in last 18 games
Wins in row at home
Wins in row overall
Wins in games trailing in 8th inning