The New York Yankees’ (76-67) four game series against the Boston Red Sox was memorable, but for the wrong reasons. We saw a series with a lot of runs scored and blown leads on both sides, two blown saves by Mariano Rivera, a Yankee bullpen that was beleaguered and battered, and a Boston Red Sox offense that was hitting the ball out of the park. It is safe to say that the Yankees’ AL East chances are over, but the Wild Card is very much alive. Due to the Tampa Bay Rays losing two of three to the Seattle Mariners, the Yankees remain just 2.5 games back of the second wild card. They did suffer more injuries to position players Derek Jeter and Chris Stewart who could miss a couple of games and New York is hoping to boost the bullpen with returns from David Robertson and Boone Logan before the series is over with the Baltimore Orioles in what will be critical to both teams’ playoff chances.
The Baltimore Orioles (76-66) were able to take three of four from the Chicago White Sox over the weekend and stay within two games of the Rays in the battle for the second wild card. The Yankees have been able to take four of the last six meeting with the O’s, but Baltimore’s wins have both come in dramatic fashion salvaging sweep with home runs off of Mo back in July or big innings such as the seven run 7th inning in the last series in Yankee Stadium. Chris Davis is still the big bat in the lineup with 48 home runs, but Baltimore has been relying on the home run lately. 19 of Baltimore’s last 24 runs scored have happened via the home run as well as 1/2 of their runs over the last two weeks. Also, Baltimore is looking to solve issues in their rotation that prevented them from gaining ground back in Cleveland last week with pitchers like Chris Tillman, Monday’s starter, who struggled with control in their last outing. The bullpen has seen Jim Johnson blow nine saves this season, but the Yankee bullpen is in worst shape than Baltimore with guys like Tommy Hunter and Francisco Rodriguez setting him up late in games.
On this episode of the Yanks Go Yard Series Preview Show presented by BaldVinny.com, I talked about the Yankees’ series with the Red Sox and some of the injuries that occurred over the week. Then, Margaret Hooper from Birds Watcher joined me to preview the critical four game series with Baltimore as we talked about the pitching matchups, the impact of Michael Morse in the O’s lineup, the potential role of young phenom Kevin Gausman, and players to watch in this series.