Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Big Win for the Angels!

I haven't been writing much, because I have been busy and because I haven't felt much distress about the state of the Yankees. But the last couple of days have made me just a touch nervous. Boston won seven in a row, and the Yankees were in a minor funk (winning one, losing one, etc) and the Evils had cut a once nine game lead down to 6.5 games (only 5 in the loss column).

Last night, the umpire cheated the Angels out of a win that would have made things a little more comfortable, but tonight, the Angels squeaked out a 4-3 win. The Yanks are now up 7 games (6 in the loss column) and things are a little more comfortable.

The Yankees are 94-53. The Evils are now 86-59. That means that the Yankees have to win 6 games the rest of the way (6 wins, 9 losses) to reach 100 wins. If we do that, Boston has to go 14-3 to tie. They now embark on a 10 game road trip. The first two series are against two of the worst teams in baseball. They will go to Baltimore for three and to Kansas City for 4. The good news is that Grienke should be pitching one of those games, unless that line drive yesterday messed him up. The Yankees are headed to the West Coast to play Seattle and LA three games apiece. Then we are home to play the Red Sox and KC. Then, we go to Tampa Bay for our last three games.

  • Someone has to tell me why on EARTH the Yankees have two trips to LA this year! The next nine games are the last big stretch of the season. We need to win two of three in every series.

  • We seldom play well on the West Coast, so winning a good percentage of the next 6 games is big.

  • We may play LA in the playoffs, so we need to establish that we can win out there. That is a crucial series psychologically.

  • We need to beat Boston two of three to stop their momentum. They have really been hot recently.

In the last 24 hours, two good things have happened. First, we came back last night from being down 2 in the eighth to beat Toronto. Then, Boston blew a 2 run lead tonight to lose. Had those games gone wrong, thing could be way too tense right now.

I wouldn't be surprised to see the Yankees play about 500 ball from here on out. We are pretty much guaranteed to be in the playoffs, and have a good lead on the home field advantage. We are resting pitchers and players, getting ready for the postseason.

I just hope we can do that without losing our edge.

I'm going out on a limb, here. We are going to go (at least) 8-7 the rest of the way to finish at 102-60. (That is 3 of 6 on the West coast, 1 of three with Boston, then two of three with each KC and Tampa Bay.) Boston may well win 12 of their remaining 17 games to finish the season at 98-64. That means that we get Detroit (or Minnesota if a miracle occurs) in the first round and Boston and LA will go back at. Boston wins that, setting up what will probably be another Empire/Nation Pennant series.

NOTE: The best thing would be more simple. The Yanks get hot this week, win 5 of 6 on the West Coast, win 2 or 3 against the Sox and make the last week of the season absolutely meaningless. Tough to imagine the Sox losing many to Baltimore or KC, even on the road.

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