NEW YORK – Brock Holt put the finishing touch on Boston's blowout by etching his name in the record book.
The 30-year-old utilityman became the first player to hit for the cycle in a postseason game and the Red Sox routed the New York Yankees 16-1 on Monday to grab a 2-1 lead in their best-of-five AL Division Series.
"It was a fun night. We were clicking on all cylinders," said Holt, unaware of his achievement until told by a television reporter right after the game. "Tonight's a night I'll remember for a long time."
Andrew Benintendi lined a three-run double and Holt tripled home two more in a seven-run fourth inning that quickly turned the latest playoff matchup between these longtime rivals into a laugher. Handed a big early lead, Nathan Eovaldi shut down his former team during New York's most lopsided defeat in 396 postseason games.
"An embarrassing day," Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius said.
Boston battered an ineffective Luis Severino and silenced a crowd that emptied out fast, after rookie Red Sox manager Alex Cora made all the right moves.
By the ninth, backup catcher Austin Romine was on the mound for New York — he gave up a two-run homer to Holt that completed his cycle.
Game 4 is Tuesday in the Bronx, and the 108-victory Red Sox can put away their rivals for good and advance to the AL Championship Series. Rick Porcello is scheduled to pitch for Boston against CC Sabathia.
Boosted by noisy fans in their homer-friendly ballpark, the Yankees entered 7-0 at home the past two postseasons — vs. out-of-division opponents. But the Red Sox, who clinched the AL East crown at Yankee Stadium 2 ½ weeks ago, were hardly intimidated.
"I think from pitch 1, we let them know that we were here," said Cora, whose team finished with 18 hits.
Holt, playing second base and hitting seventh in his first playoff start of the year, opened the fourth with a single off Severino, and he capped the 26-minute outburst with a triple to right. Holt also doubled in a run in the eighth and finished with five RBI.
Severino began warming up only 10 minutes before the game and looked out of sorts from the start in misty weather. He was replaced by Lance Lynn with the bases loaded and nobody out in the fourth and was charged with six runs and seven hits.
"He got his normal pitches routine," New York manager Aaron Boone said. "It wasn't an issue."
• There were four replay challenges in the first four innings, all involving calls by first base umpire Angel Hernandez. Three were overturned. Hernandez will be the plate umpire Tuesday.