Thursday, September 24, 2015
THE IMPACT OF THE YANKEES-BLUE JAYS SERIES
It's September baseball, and the AL East is running a tight race. There is no room for mistakes. And this Yankees - Blue Jays series is huge for the Yankees. Coming in on Monday, the goal is to take the series, and hopefully, jump back into the lead in the AL East. If we don't? Well, let's hope we can get the wild card spot.
This series was an excellent display of all our problems. To make a viable run for the post season, there are kinks we need to work out. Our pitching and bullpen have been phenomenal for the most part. They've been able to come through in tight spots. Our hitting is an entirely different story. All season we've either hit really well or not at all. Many games our line-up is scoring in the double digits. Then we'll go two or three games barely getting runs, if at all.
Tuesday we were on. Well mostly, I guess. Luis Severino was our starting pitcher for the night. He managed to get through 6, only giving up 2 runs. Yankees held an uncomfortable 1 run lead until the bottom of the 9th. Andrew Miller gave up a solo home run to Dioner Navarro to tie the game. Greg Bird became our hero in extra innings, hitting a 3 run homer. We won 6 - 4 Tuesday.
Monday and Wednesday, not so much. Adam Warren on Monday, and Ivan Nova on Wednesday, both gave good starts. Neither pitcher had any run support.
We were 1 for 6 with runners in scoring position on Monday. We failed to capitalize on the few opportunities we were given. And we were given very few by David Price.
The Yankees just do not seem to be hitting well against him since his move to Toronto. I suspect it has to do with working with Russell Martin. Price throwing more cutters is in part due to Martin, who does well with framing pitches. The combination of Martin at catcher and Price on the mound has not been kind to our hitters. Although the Yankees bullpen did well in keeping us in the game, the fact that the Yankees simply could not score until the 8th inning was our ultimate undoing. We lost that game 4 - 2.
Wednesday was much worse. We were completely shut out. Nova, who hasn't been very reliable, actually did incredibly well. He went 5 innings without giving up a single run. Our bullpen faltered a bit, with Andrew Bailey giving up a 3 run homer to Martin late in the game. But honestly, you cannot win games if you aren't scoring any runs. The Yankees were shut out 4 - 0.
I'll repeat, this series was incredibly important for the Yankees. Even winning 2 out of 3 would have been great. Now we are 3.5 games back in the division. If we are going to make a serious run at it, they need to figure out what the problem is with our bats. When we are hitting, we're fantastic. But those days are far and few in-between. We cannot continue playing games the way we did this series, and expect to be real contenders for the World Series. It's not going to happen. Basic little league... move the runners! It's completely unnecessary to swing for the fences every single time. Just get guys on, and bring guys home. Play some damn small ball! We continue to struggle with runners in scoring position.
And I know, there is always the Wild Card. Look, if we have the chance at the division, we need to play for it. The one game elimination game for the Wild Card does not sound appealing. It'll be our luck that the team that shows up that night is the one that forgot how to hit. We really cannot rely on the Wild Card slot to take us into the post season.
Yea, this is a little bit of a rant. I know some of you may be saying "Have faith in the team." Let me be clear, I believe they can make it. THAT is why I am so frustrated. They have the ability to perform better. So why the hell aren't they?
Blue Jays take the series, and a bigger lead in the division, 2 - 1.
-Erica Morales BYB Senior Writer
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