Jacoby Ellsbury celebrated his 29th birthday in style, going 4-for-5 and hitting the decisive single in the bottom of the 9th to secure a 4-3 win over New York.
Ellsbury came to the plate with two on and one out. Pedro Ciriaco and Mike Aviles had each singled, putting David Robertson on the ropes. Ells worked the count and waited for a pitch he could do something with, drilling the ball into right field. The speedy Ciriaco flew around third and beat Ichiro's throw by a second.
That 9th inning tells you a bit about why Yankees fans actually do have reason to worry about this team down the stretch. No Mariano Rivera means the 9th inning is no longer a near-guarantee. And while the names are big all around the diamond, diminished skills that come with age mean that guys like Ichiro no longer throw quite as hard as they used to.
Jon Lester struggled with command, throwing a career-high seven walks over five and a third innings. He did strike out five, and in doing so passed Bruce Hurst on the Sox all-time left-handed pitcher strikeout list. Congrats to Jon.
For the Sox, the win is the first positive thing that's happened in a while. The win snaps a five-game losing streak and is the first at Fenway since August 27th. The fans deserve something nice. Hopefully we can get a few more of these the rest of the way
(But let's not overreact and give Ellsbury $200 million, cool?)