When Andy Pettitte exited Friday night’s game against the Red Sox the veteran lefty had to believe his personal winning streak was going to stretch to four straight.

After all the Yankees led by five runs and the bullpen even without Mariano Rivera and David Robertson was only responsible for nine outs.

Instead Phil Hughes Boone Logan Preston Claiborne and Joba Chamberlain turned a five-run lead into a 12-8 loss.

“He was done’’ manager Joe Girardi said when asked if he toyed with sending Pettitte out for the seventh.

In six frames Pettitte allowed three runs and five hits. In his last four starts Pettitte is 3-0 with a 1.40 ERA.

“That’s a tough loss that’s for sure’’ Pettitte said.

It’s the smallest of samples but lefty reliever Cesar Cabral might get more opportunities to help.
“It looks like he has been pretty tough on left-handed hitters with his breaking ball’’ Girardi said of Cabral who has appeared in two games and fanned all three left-handed hitters he faced. “He probably will get more chances based on what he has done so far.’’

Cabral 24 missed all of 2012 due to a fractured elbow and appeared in 33 minor league games this season.

Jacoby Ellsbury wasn’t in the Red Sox lineup due to a right foot problem. Boston’s leadoff hitter and center fielder is likely to return Saturday.

Shane Victorino replaced Ellsbury on top of the order and in center and hit a two-run homer in the eighth inning that snapped an 8-8 tie. …

The Yankees are 35-2 at home when leading by at least two runs according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
If Kevin Youkilis returns from June back surgery it likely won’t be until the final week of the season and that might be a stretch.