Yankees-Red Sox Preview

No team has close to as many homers as the New York Yankees over

the previous six days, while the Boston Red Sox have had a rough

time watching opponents trot around the bases during their losing

streak.

The longball could play a major role for a second straight

afternoon as the Yankees look to hand the Red Sox a fifth

consecutive loss Saturday.

New York (8-6) has homered 16 times since Sunday, hitting a

season-high five in Friday’s 6-2 victory that spoiled the 100th

anniversary celebration of Fenway Park. Eric Chavez recorded his

first multihomer effort since 2006, and Nick Swisher, Alex

Rodriguez and Russell Martin also went deep.

“Obviously today was our day, five home runs, that doesn’t

happen very often,” Swisher said.

It happened Tuesday to the Red Sox (4-9) when they gave up six

homers to Texas in an 18-3 defeat. They have allowed 12 over the

last three games of this four-game slide in which they’ve been

outscored 31-8.

“We’re a good team. We’re just not playing good baseball,” first

baseman Adrian Gonzalez said. “It’s frustrating the way we’re

losing.”

Rodriguez moved into fifth place with his 631st career home run

– 29 behind Willie Mays for fourth. None of New York’s homers

Friday came from Curtis Granderson and Derek Jeter, the team

leaders at six and four, respectively.

The Yankees homered four times in Thursday’s 7-6 win over

Minnesota, getting three in the first four innings from

Granderson.

Jeter moved into 18th place on the all-time hits list Friday

with 3,111 – one more than his boyhood idol Dave Winfield. The star

shortstop was happy to see the Yankees get off to a strong start on

a six-game trip that takes them to Texas next week.

“It feels good to win,” Jeter said. “We want to win each and

every game, we can’t worry about how hard the schedule is. We know

Boston is good, we want to play well here.”

The last-place Red Sox haven’t dropped five in a row at home

since a six-game skid early in 2010.

These teams rank among baseball’s worst in allowing homers, with

Boston surrendering 23 and New York 18. Both will send starters

with high ERAs to the mound Saturday, with the Red Sox turning to

Felix Doubront (0-0, 5.40) and the Yankees to Freddy Garcia (0-1,

6.97).

Doubront has failed to record an out past the fifth inning in

his two starts, going five-plus and allowing four runs in Sunday’s

6-4 victory over Tampa Bay.

The left-hander has a 3.86 ERA over four relief appearances

against the Yankees.

Garcia gave up five runs over 5 2-3 innings Monday in a 7-3 home

loss to the Twins after failing to get through five innings in his

first start.

The veteran right-hander went 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA in four starts

against the Red Sox last season, and he’s 3-1 with a 4.22 ERA in

eight outings at Fenway.

Mike Aviles is 8 for 14 against Garcia while Kevin Youkilis is 3

for 16. The slumping Youkilis is hitting .195 with 14 strikeouts in

11 games.