Last night’s loss to the Red Sox seems to have upset people a little more than usual. I’m not sure if it’s because it was against the Red Sox, the fact that they had two leads and blew both, or if they are just tired of Phil Hughes. Whatever the reason there is a lot of negativity going around.
The thing is, things aren’t as bad as they seem.
The Yankees are still very comfortable in their hunt for the playoffs. They are 7.5 games ahead of the Rays for the Wild-Card and nine ahead of the Angels with neither team really looking poised to make a playoff run.
So the Yankees are getting into the playoffs. Maybe it’s the losses that are piling up against the Red Sox. Their 3-11 record agaisnt them is pretty hard to look at and it makes it seem as if the Red Sox are substantially better than them. However, it is important to remember that they are not. They are two very closely matched teams.
Both teams have a wRC+ of 119 while their team ERA’s are barely different with the Yankees edging them out 3.69 to 3.87. Take away their head to head records and the Yankees have a big edge at 78-42 against 72-49. It’s safe to say that the two are closer in skill level than their record against each other shows.
There is also the problem with Hughes and A.J. Burnett that has everyone upset. It’s important to remember though that this is a good team’s problem. No other team has a fan base fretting over who their no. 5 and no. 6 starters are going to be. That’s a good problem to have and one that disappears completely come playoff time. So maybe fans who are getting so upset over these two need to step back and look at other team’s fifth starters. I know more was expected of these two, but it is what it is and other pitchers have stepped up.
The Yankees have a good team, a damn good team. They are absolutely crushing the ball offensively and their pitching has, despite the failure of two pitchers who were supposed to play big roles, exceeded all expectations. They have question marks, but so does everybody. The Red Sox have issues, the Phillies have issues, that’s baseball.