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Red Sox Notes: Yankees Rivalry Lives Up To Hype For First Timers

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BOSTON — Red Sox vs. Yankees is different.

It’s something that everyone realizes once they finally get an opportunity to experience the rivalry, but that feeling is extra special for those who get to put on the uniform and jaunt onto the field at Fenway Park or Yankee Stadium.

Justin Slaten and Cooper Criswell got that opportunity Saturday.

“It’s everything you see as a kid growing up,” Slaten said postgame. “This rivalry goes back a long ways, obviously, and it’s something you can feel coming into the clubhouse every day, stepping onto the field for the anthem and all throughout the game… It’s a really surreal feeling.

“I had to kind of come into (the clubhouse) after I was done and take a minute to think, ‘Wow, it’s the first time pitching in a game like that.’ It’s true that all games matter, but it just felt like these last two and the one tomorrow mean a little bit more.”

Slaten performed admirably in his first exposure to Red Sox-Yankees, picking up the win and allowing just one run in 2 2/3 innings of relief. It was Criswell who got the start, and though he didn’t get an opportunity to pitch as deep into the game as he would have liked, it was an experience that produced much of the same awe-struck feeling as his teammate.

“It’s the first time for me experiencing this rival,” Criswell said. “It’s awesome being out there.”

Here are more notes from Saturday night’s matchup between the Red Sox and Yankees:

— The Red Sox announced an attendance of 36,673 for this one. It marked just the second sellout of the season at Fenway Park and the first since Opening Day against the Baltimore Orioles on April 9.

— Kenley Jansen earned the 431st save of his career Saturday, calling his own number before recording the final four outs of the game.

“The big man called in the middle of the eight,” Cora revealed postgame. “He made the call. I didn’t make the call. He said, ‘I’m in it.'”

— Bobby Dalbec spoke with before the game, detailing his mindset as he enters some uncertainty with the organization.

— Boston will put a bow on its three-game set against New York on Sunday, with first pitch scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET on ESPN before Alex Cora and the gang return to NESN for a matchup with the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday.


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