As I write this, the Yankees are losing this game 10-0, after six – and New York has only 3 hits in the contest to date. I think it’s safe to say that this one is going to end up in the “L” column.
Back on August 20th, I wrote:
The New York Yankees are currently 4 games back of the Boston Red Sox in the A.L. East – with 38 games remaining on the 2007 schedule.
The Yankees and Red Sox are scheduled to face each other on August 28th. Between now, and then, both New York and Boston have seven games to play this week – all on the road (for both teams).
Look at it this way, at the best, the Yankees will be three games ahead of the Red Sox, when they meet on August 28th. And, at the worst, the Yankees will be eleven games out of first, when Boston comes to New York.
Well, with a loss in this game, the Yankees will be eight games out of first place when they face the Red Sox tomorrow. In just one week’s time, the Yankees have fallen another four games back of Boston – making this upcoming series no pressure whatsoever for the Bosox. Even if the Yankees sweep, at the worst, Boston will be five games up with 28 games left to play. That’s no problem for the Sox.
On the flip side, if the Red Sox take 2 of 3 from the Yankees now, that will give them a nine game lead with 28 games to play…so, if that happens, you might as well stick a fork in New York, because they appear to be done in the A.L. East.
The Yankees have played themselves into a corner where their only hope for October baseball now comes in the form of the Wildcard. One of five teams will take the ‘card between the Angels, Mariners, Yankees, Indians or Tigers. No one else has a shot at it. And, I suppose that you can say it’s three teams – since someone from the M’s/Angels will win the west and someone from the Tigers/Tribe will win the central.
Since it usually comes down to pitching, I’m going to say that Angels win the west and the Indians win the central – leaving the Yankees, Tigers and Mariners to fight over the Wildcard.
Detroit and Seattle are pretty close to each other, in terms of overall team pitching effectiveness. Some people would say that New York is slightly better than the two of them in this department. But, the Yankees are working with a three-man rotation now. It’s going to be tight for New York.
It’s up to Pettitte, Wang and Clemens from here out. Combined, they’re probably going to get 18 starts over the rest of the season. And, the trio will most likely have to go something like 13-5 over those games to get the Yankees were they need to be (for the Wildcard).
Therefore, this is what I’m calling at this point: As soon as Pettitte, Wang and Clemens lose 5 more games this year, combined, you can then forget about the Yankees’ 2007 season – as it will be over at that point.