BOSTON — Demoted closer Aroldis Chapman entered with two outs in the sixth inning on Sunday and produced his first scoreless appearance since Aug. 5 in the Yankees’ 5-1 loss to the Red Sox at Fenway Park.
Chapman, who got four outs, had allowed seven runs over his last four appearances. It was his first time pitching in the sixth since 2011.
“He came in and did his job,” Joe Girardi said of Chapman, who was removed from the closer’s role on Saturday.
The 29-year-old flamethrower had produced a 9.95 ERA in his previous seven appearances against Boston this season.
Chapman reported feeling good after the outing, which nearly turned into a disaster.
After striking out Brock Holt to end the sixth, Chapman walked Mookie Betts leading off the seventh. Betts then advanced to second on what was scored a wild pitch but should’ve gone as a passed ball against Gary Sanchez.
Andrew Benintendi followed by flying out to Aaron Judge, but Betts deked him and was able to move to third. Still, Chapman ultimately got Hanley Ramirez to fly to center and struck out nemesis Rafael Devers to end the frame. Devers had previously gotten to Chapman for a homer and a single.
The Yankees are currently going closer by committee with Dellin Betances and David Robertson.
Chapman is in the first year of a five-year, $ 86 million deal.
Tommy Kahnle had a rough series against Boston, failing to record an out while allowing two runs on Sunday. He also allowed two runs in two-thirds of an inning on Friday.
“He’s had a really good year, and we’ve got to get him back on track, too,” Girardi said.
Aaron Judge had his left shoulder iced after the game. “It’s not affecting me at all,” Judge said. … Greg Bird (ankle) got the day off after producing back-to-back two hit games with Triple-A Scranton. The 24-year-old is accompanying the minor-league team on its road trip to Rochester to continue his rehab assignment. There is no word on when he’ll return. Starlin Castro (hamstring) is also traveling as well. Castro went 1-for-4 on Sunday. … Matt Holliday (back) went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts with Class-A Tampa. Holliday has yet to record a hit in his minor-league rehab stint. … With Masahiro Tanaka (shoulder) starting Tuesday in Detroit, Bryan Mitchell was optioned to Triple-A Scranton. … Clint Frazier (oblique) still hasn’t been cleared yet to swing. … An MLB.com report said Yankees VP of player development Gary Denbo could be a candidate for the GM job in Miami under new owner Derek Jeter. Jeter and Denbo have a close relationship. Denbo was key in Jeter’s development as a player in the minors.
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