The New York Yankees (17-10) will conclude a ten game homestand this week that has been mostly positive. Their last series with the Houston Astros was not the blowout that fans expected, but it was still a series win. The bats came to the party, including Ben Francisco with his first home run of the season. Starting pitching left a lot to be desired due to a poor outing by Andy Pettitte on Monday, but it was the bullpen arms of David Robertson and Mariano Rivera that continue to make the 8th and 9th inning nearly lights out for opponents against the Yanks. However, the injury bug continues to strike the team with disabled list stints for Kevin Youkilis and Joba Chamberlain. Now, the Yankees get set to take on an opponent that is off to a hot start on the other side of the USA.
The Oakland Athletics (16-13) are coming off an AL West championship in 2012. Some of their starters have fell into the sophomore slump, but this is a team managed by Bob Melvin that can score runs. Their star to watch in that lineup is outfielder Yoenis Cespedes, who has just returned from his own stint on the disabled list. There are some under-the-radar players to watch in shortstop Jed Lowrie (.327 batting average) and third baseman Josh Donaldson with a team-high 21 RBI’s. Plus, Yankees’ fans will see the return of Bartolo Colon to the Bronx on Saturday when he goes up against Phil Hughes. Last year, these two teams played close games it seemed every night against each other, particularly the 4-game set in Oakland where the A’s won every game by one run.
For this episode of the Yanks Go Yard show presented by BaldVinny.com, I recapped the Houston Astros‘ series and look ahead to this weekend’s series with Oakland. My special guest is Sean Davis, the editor of SwinginAs.com. Sean and I talked about the A”s wild week, including their 19-inning win over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim back on Monday. Did Melvin make the right call by allowing Brett Anderson to pitch 5+ innings out of the bullpen on Monday only to put himself on the disabled list? We also talk about the return of Cespedes and the A’s rising stars in a lineup that leads the Major Leagues in runs.