Red Sox beat Yankees in MLB wildcard

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Xander Bogaerts and Kyle Schwarber have hit home runs off Yankees ace Gerrit Cole to help the Boston Red Sox beat New York 6-2 in MLB's American League wildcard game.

Bogaerts also made a perfect relay to throw out Aaron Judge at the plate when the game was still close, sending the Red Sox into the AL division series against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Boston chased Cole in the third inning and beat New York in the playoffs for the third straight time.

The Yankees, who lead the majors with 27 world series championships, have not won it all since 2009.

A year after baseball took its post-season into neutral site bubbles to protect against the pandemic, a sellout crowd of 38,324 - the biggest of the year - filled Fenway Park to rekindle one of the sport's most passionate rivalries.

Enough Yankee fans were among them to fuel a raucous back-and-forth of insulting chants.

After Bogaerts drilled a line drive over the wall to get the score off the mark, Cole was pulled after he allowed Schwarber's third-inning solo shot and put two more men on with nobody out.

In contrast, Red Sox starter Nathan Eovaldi was brilliant - allowing only two hits through five innings before giving up a solo home run to Anthony Rizzo.

After an infield single by Aaron Judge, Ryan Brasier relieved Eovaldi and gave up a wall single to Giancarlo Stanton but the play proved pivotal.

Mistakenly waved home by third base coach Phil Nevin, Judge was easily thrown out at the plate with the score at 3-1 in the sixth as Boston held firm.

Game 1 in the best-of-five match-up between Tampa Bay and Boston is Thursday night in St. Petersburg, Florida.

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