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DAN SHAUGHNESSY

These performances difficult to watch

You've heard of the twi-night doubleheader and the day-night doubleheader? Say hello to the day-night-morning doubleheader.

Make that day-night-mourning doubleheader.

In one of the ugliest and most painful twin bills in the long history of the ancient yard, the Red Sox were swept by the Yankees, 12-4 and 14-11, at Fenway yesterday-today. It took more than eight hours to play the 18 sloppy innings. Game 2 was officially the longest nine-inning game in major league history (4 hours 45 minutes) and ended at 12:52 a.m. Parents with children who were still there at the end should be reported to DSS. Game films will not be stored in Cooperstown.

Terry Francona said it best after the Game 1 carnage: ``. . . sometimes it's tough to watch."

Twenty-eight years ago the Yankees came to the Hub and beat the Red Sox four straight times -- 15-3, 13-2, 7-0, and 7-4. Yesterday, the ghosts of Don Zimmer, Mike Torrez, and Bobby Sprowl returned to the Fens as the Yankees inflicted a ghoulish pair of beatings on the local nine. It was the Son of the Boston Massacre.

Start with this scenario: Biggest series of the season . . . make or break against the storied rival who has finished ahead of you in eight straight seasons . . . first of five games in 76 hours . . . and the Red Sox went into battle with a starting pitcher they knew they were going to dump after the game.

The Game 1 annihilation was not the fault of Red Sox starter Jason Johnson, who saw his record dip to 3-12 (55-98 lifetime). When in doubt, it's always easiest to blame Javy Lopez (was he, per chance, involved with the work on the Big Dig?). But by the time the last out was made early today, nobody was blaming Johnson or Lopez anymore. They were forgotten.

The Boston brass takes the hardest hits for this indecent exposure at the Fens. The Sox fell to 3 1/2 games out of first place (four in the loss column) and the blame goes to Theo Epstein and the minions. Guess they really are thinking about 2007 and '08.

Some lowlights from a bloody scorecard:

Johnny Damon (you might remember him) went 6 for 12 with two home runs, a triple, and seven RBIs. Damon's demonstration thoroughly exposed counterpart Coco Crisp, who went 0 for 5 in Game 1, losing his leadoff job again with his latest in a lengthening line of performances as ``The Invisible Man."

``Johnny's pretty much doing everything for us," said Derek Jeter, who made his case as an American League MVP candidate, doubling with the bases loaded in the seventh inning to break open the particularly untidy Game 2.

Bobby Abreu, deemed too expensive for the Red Sox when the Yankees dealt for him at the trading deadline, went 6 for 9 with two walks. He reached base in 9 of 12 plate appearances.

Manny Delcarmen, Jon Lester, and Craig Hansen, the Baby Bulls deemed too precious to trade at the deadline, all failed miserably in their trials by fire against the Bronx Bombers. Delcarmen gave up a game-breaking, two-run single to the first batter he faced in the afternoon game. Lester threw 41 pitches in the second inning of the nightcap and gave up seven earned runs in 3 2/3 innings. Only 53 of his 95 pitches were strikes. Hansen gave up two hits and three runs in a third of an inning when the Sox blew their 10-7 lead in Game 2.

The Yankees twice intentionally walked Manny Ramírez in the early innings of the first game, daring the rest of the Red Sox batters to make them pay. Alas, the Sox, too reliant on a pair of historic sluggers, were unable to capitalize and can expect to see a lot of this strategy in the remaining weeks of the season. Red Sox batters were 0 for 16 with runners in scoring position in the first game.

Every member of the Yankees' stating lineup scored at least one run in the first game.

Boston's two starters threw 189 pitches and lasted a total of eight innings.

Oh, not to rub it in, but Randy Johnson pitches today and the Yankees will be getting Hideki Matsui back in September.

Things should calm down considerably today. Good thing. It's hard to imagine that the bullpens can stand any more stress. The Sox send Josh Beckett to the mound today, Curt Schilling tomorrow, and David Wells Monday. The Yankees will counter with the Big Unit, Mike Mussina, and Cory Lidle.

Clearly, neither of these teams is anywhere near complete. Both pitching staffs are pourous and any New York-Boston battle of bullpens shapes up as something akin to a Battle of the Bands at the Hampton Beach Casino. Long, loud, and ugly.

In the words of your own manager -- sometimes it's tough to watch.

Dan Shaughnessy is a Globe columnist. His e-mail address is dshaughnessy@globe.com.

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