Andrew Benintendi is Ready to Witness the Intensity of the Yankees-Red Sox Rivalry from the Opposing Side

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Andrew Benintendi has witnessed it firsthand. The Yankees’ new outfielder was at the Yankee Stadium celebrating the Red Sox winning the American League East and the AL Division Series in 2018. Friday, however, will be his first return to Fenway Park to face his old team.

He recalls how it felt to see the Yankees all over the field back then.

Benintendi will return to Fenway Park for the 1st time since being traded from the Red Sox to the Royals in a three-team deal in February 2021. Benintendi was injured last season when Kansas City traveled to Boston, so this will be his first return.

After a crazy two weeks, Benintendi is returning feeling a little more grounded. Benintendi is settling into the All-Star form that drew the Bombers to him after going 1-for-20 in his 1st 7 games with the Yankees. Benintendi is hitting .316/.350/.536 with an OPS of .870 in his last five games. He’s always been a solid defensive left fielder.

On July 27, he and the Royals flew to New York City for a four-game series against the Yankees. He had been in his hotel room when Royals manager Mike Matheny arrived and informed him that he’d been traded to the Bombers. He managed to spend the rest of the night with some Royals teammates before showing up at the Stadium to try to beat them.

At the time of the trade, Benintendi was hitting .320/.387/.398 with 3 home runs for the Royals. This season, He made his 1st All-Star Game appearance and is set to become a free agent at the end of the season. A Gold Glove winner in 2021 was a significant improvement over Joey Gallo, whom the Yankees badly needed to replace.

The Yankees‘ decision to sign Benintendi was influenced by their previous experience with him with the Red Sox. After Gallo wilted in New York, the Bombers needed to ensure they had such a player who could take the pressure.

Benintendi has had success playing under the harsh lights of Boston.

With the Red Sox, he reached the postseason 3 times, including a World Series victory. In 21 career postseason games, he hit .272/.322/.407 with two homers & nine RBI. During the Red Sox’s World Series run in 2018, he began 13 of 14 playoff games.

That streak started with a division series victory over the Yankees, which they celebrated on the ground in the Bronx.

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