The last time the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox clashed, Alex Rodriguez was intentionally hit by a pitch and the Yankees rallied to take two out of three from the Red Sox at Fenway Park. Now, the Red Sox and Yankees will meet again, except this time it’s at Yankee Stadium. ESPN New York took Yankees fans back to the series that possibly turned the Yankees season around. Before that series, the Yankees took two out of three games from the Detroit Tigers, but those were aided by two Brett Gardner walk-offs. After the Red Sox series, the Yankees started winning as a team. It wasn’t just one person winning the game or series. The Yankees lineup had become more complex for opposing pitchers to navigate. It’s now filled with more power hitters, and the lineup is no longer filled with “easy outs”.
Joe Girardi emphasized how important this series was to the Yankees on Wednesday night, although the Yankees would feel some lingering effects from that Sunday night where the Red Sox did the impossible and made Alex Rodriguez look like a sympathetic figure.
“Time is always good.” Girardi said to the media. “I think we obviously know what’s at stake here. We have to go out and play the games and win the games. That’s the most important thing. I think our guys know what is at stake.”
Girardi makes a valid point. The Yankees are no longer fighting for the AL East, but they are fighting for the second Wild Card spot. Going into play tonight, they sit 2.5 games behind the Tampa Bay Rays for the second spot. In July the Yankees almost had no chance of making the playoffs. Now they have a legitimate chance as long as they win their games and the Rays lose their games. This four-game set is crucial for both the Yankees and Red Sox. The Yankees want to gain ground on the Rays. The Red Sox want to extend their lead in the AL East. Only one team will be content by the time the series is over. We can only hope the Yankees get the good end of the stick.
NOTES & NEWS
— Since there’s not a lot of New York Yankees news, let’s take you down to the minor leagues. Zoilo Almonte will do his rehab assignment with the Trenton Thunder tonight. Trenton is currently in the playoffs, playing Game 2 of the Eastern League Championship Series against the Binghamton Mets.
— It’s getting close to the season. Buy your Yankees tickets here.