NEW YORK - Less than one week ago, it looked like the Red Sox were ready to kick their playoff pursuit into high gear.
Now they're in a free fall.
The Sox lost to the Yankees 4-2 Friday night in the Bronx, their fifth loss in a row. The Red Sox had not lost five in a row since 2015, when they finished in last place in the American League East.
Eduardo Rodriguez gave up a first inning grand slam to Gleyber Torres, but gave Boston a respectable outing after that. He went 6 2/3 innings, gave up five hits, walked six, and struck out eight.
But the Sox couldn't support their best starting pitcher of late. J.D. Martinez's two-run homer in the first was all the offense Boston could muster.
Left-hander James Paxton took the win for the Yankees, tossing six innings of two run baseball.
The Red Sox and Yankees will play a day-night doubleheader on Saturday. Chris Sale will pitch in game one with Brian Johnson taking the mound in the nightcap.