MLB Rivalry, Playoff Edition: Yankees, Red Sox Battle In Wild Card Game

The New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox will play a winner-take-all game for just the fifth time in their historic rivalry.

Both teams waited until the 9th inning in the 162nd game to clinch the two American League Wild Card spots.

The Yankees and Red Sox finished the regular season with identical 92-70 records. Boston won the head-to-head season series 10-9, setting up a one-game playoff Tuesday night at Fenway Park.

First pitch is scheduled for 8:08 p.m. (ESPN).

New York will start their ace, Gerrit Cole. Boston will send former Yankee Nathan Eovaldi to the mound.

Winner of the Wild Card game moves on to face the Tampa Bay Rays (100-62) in a best-of-five AL Division Series. Loser heads to Tampa for tee times, snorkeling, and family vacations.

NJ sports betting lines for Yankees vs. Red Sox Wild Card Game

Yankees odds  to win World Series No. 28 at NJ sportsbooks

The Yankees are searching for the franchise’s 41st AL pennant and 28th World Series championship. The Yankees have not been to the Fall Classic since 2009 when they beat the Philadelphia Phillies in six games.

Boston is fighting for its 15th pennant and 10th title. The Red Sox last won it all in 2018.

Neither ball club is favored to win it all or represent the AL in the World Series.

As of Monday afternoon, DraftKings Sportsbook had the defending champion Los Angeles Dodgers, at +390 to repeat. The Houston Astros were next at +450.

The Yankees were tied with the Atlanta Braves at +1100. Here is a look at the NJ World Series odds for the other playoff teams:

  • San Francisco Giants +700
  • Chicago White Sox +700
  • Tampa Bay Rays+750
  • Milwaukee Brewers +750
  • Boston Red Sox +1600
  • St.Louis Cardinals +2200

Recent history of Yanks/Sox single-game eliminations

New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone is no stranger to do-or-die games against the Boston Red Sox.

In the 2003 AL Championship Series, Aaron “Bleepin’” Boone hit a walk-off home run on the first pitch of the 11th inning in Game 7. The Yankees would go on to lose the World Series to the Florida Marlins.

Boston got revenge the very next year and, in the process, broke the 86-year-old Curse of the Bambino. The Red Sox became the first team in MLB history to come back from a 3-0 series deficit defeating the Yanks in seven games. Boston would go to win its first WS title since 1918.

Of course, no recap of this 1-95 feud is complete without mentioning 1978 and Game 163. Bucky “(expletive)” Dent forever became a household name when he hit a three-run HR over the Green Monster at Fenway to put the Yankees on top for good. The Yankees won World Series title No. 22 a few weeks later.

Yankees history class is now in session

The other two sudden-death games involving New York and Boston occurred in 1949 and 1904.

The New York Highlanders and Boston Americans played back-to-back doubleheaders in early October of 1904. The Americans dashed the Highlanders’ hopes to secure the AL pennant. However, the New York Giants refused to play the winner deeming the AL a lesser league.

On the final day of the 1949 season, the Yankees beat Boston 5-3 to win the pennant. They would go on to beat the Brooklyn Dodgers to win the first of five consecutive World Series championships.

AP Photo/Michael Dwyer

About the Author

David Danzis

David Danzis is an award-winning journalist who has covered business, politics, government, education, and sports in New Jersey. Most recently, he wrote about Atlantic City casinos, online gaming, and sports betting for The Press of Atlantic City. David is a graduate of Rutgers University.