NEW YORK -- Andrew Benintendi's sweet stroke produced a pair of three-run homers as the Red Sox pounded Luis Severino and the Yankees, 10-5, on Saturday afternoon to claim their ninth victory in 10 games.
One day after the Red Sox's bullpen coughed up a three-run advantage just six outs from victory, Benintendi ensured there would be no repeat of that performance as Boston reclaimed a 4 1/2-game advantage over the Yankees in the American League East chase. It matches the Yankees' largest deficit of the season.
"That's been a little bit of the characteristic of this team," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "We've done a very good job of separating from the night before, coming back in for a day game, putting up good offensive at-bats and scoring runs early in ballgames. I think that's a testament to our guys being able to turn the page and get right after it the next day."
Benintendi took Severino deep to right field in the third and fifth innings as Boston twice hung five-run frames on the right-hander, whose four-start win streak was snapped in his worst effort of the season. The 23-year-old rookie left fielder became the youngest Red Sox player to have six RBIs against the Yankees since 1920.
"I didn't know that, but I guess that's cool. I just got my pitch and put a good swing on it and was fortunate enough for it to go out," said Benintendi, who is slashing .484/.541/.968 in August with four homers and 11 RBIs.
Hurt by his defense at times, Severino was charged with a career-high 10 runs (eight earned) in 4 1/3 innings, the most allowed by a Yanks hurler this year.
"He wasn't executing his pitches today. He made some mistakes," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "He's been so good and executing so well, we haven't seen it for a while, but it just goes to show you that he's human."
Left-hander Drew Pomeranz breezed to his career-high 12th victory, holding the Yankees to three runs and seven hits over 6 2/3 innings. He improved to 6-0 with a 2.42 ERA in his last 11 starts. Gary Sanchez hit a two-run homer, his 19th, off Pomeranz in the first inning.
Boston finished 4-for-11 with runners in scoring position after Yankees hurlers had limited them to just three hits in 64 such at-bats (.047) over their first 10 meetings this season.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Wanna be startin' somethin': Severino retired the first seven batters before Christian Vazquez worked a nine-pitch walk, a battle that started the unraveling of the Yanks' ace. Another walk to Jackie Bradley Jr. followed and third baseman Todd Frazier booted a potential double-play ball, loading the bases. Mookie Betts cashed a two-run single and Benintendi launched a projected 371-foot blast to right for his 15th homer, coming off the bat at 106.3 mph, according to Statcast™.
"I tried rushing the throw and couldn't get a handle on the ball," Frazier said. "It was a big play in the game, a big mistake. Sevy is so good, I thought we were going to get out of it, but it was a big mistake and a big part of the game. It's something I take responsibility for. I've at least got to get one [out] there."
Stop right there: The lopsided outcome obscured the close nature of the game in the fourth inning, when Ellsbury's RBI groundout trimmed Boston's lead to 5-3 with the Yanks threatening for more. Pomeranz buckled down to record the next two outs, inducing Ronald Torreyes to foul out and getting Brett Gardner to pop out to shortstop. Boston responded by hanging another five-spot on Severino in the top of the fifth.
"Huge," said Pomeranz. "That was a huge inning. They had bases loaded, and in that situation, I'm just trying to focus on making pitches. A couple popups there to get out of it."
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Benintendi became just the second player in Red Sox history to belt homers of three runs or more against the Yankees in the same game. Hall of Famer Jimmie Foxx did it twice in 1938, smashing two three-run homers on Sept. 7 and roping a grand slam and a three-run homer on Oct. 1.
WHAT'S NEXT Red Sox: Ace Chris Sale (14-4, 2.57 ERA) gets the nod for the Red Sox in Sunday night's rubber match of this three-game series at 8:05 ET. The lefty is putting together the best season by a Boston starting pitcher in recent memory. Last time out, he held the Rays to two hits and a walk over eight innings while striking out 13. Sale is 0-1 against the Yankees in two starts this season, but has a 1.15 ERA.