LADY AT THE BAT: Yankees Continue To Win Series, Must Keep Eye On Division Foes

Monday, July 27, 2015

Yankees Continue To Win Series, Must Keep Eye On Division Foes

The New York Yankees are pure fun to watch right now. Whether it’s winning close 1-run games (they played in five straight coming out of the All-Star Break and won four of them) or blowing out the opposition (they won three of their last four games and each win was three runs or higher) the Yankees are finding ways to win series.

Excluding the series against the Angels, which concluded on July 1, the Yankees have won every series this month including a sweep of the division rival Baltimore Orioles. They have built a healthy 6.5 game lead in the A.L. East, and are 13 games above .500. Not only are they playing well, but they are getting valuable contributions from even their back-up players.

John Ryan Murphy won the game for the Yankees on Saturday night by hitting a 3 run HR off name brand Twins closer Glen Perkins, and Garrett Jones, who last played on July 18, came through with a bases loaded single to give the Yankees a lead they would never relinquish in Sunday’s game.

Even Stephen Drew, he of the sub .200 batting average, added in a HR for good measure,

Based on these results, Brian Cashman could be forgiven for standing pat as the July 31 trade deadline draws near. The potential problem is, will their A.L. East opponents do the same? Based on run differential, the Yankees are third in the A.L, trailing the Toronto Blue Jays and the Baltimore Orioles. The Blue Jays are leading not just the division but the entire American League. Somehow they are just at .500, but history tells us that will even out over time.

The Blue Jays have missed the playoffs every year since 1993 and, given the two Wild Cards, the overall parity in the American League and the fact that the core of their team is not getting any younger, there’s nothing to suggest that the Blue Jays won’t go for broke this year. If they get some pitching they will be nothing short of dangerous, and the Yankees play them 10 more times this year, all after the deadline.

Similarly, the Orioles are a powerful team, ranking fourth in the American League in HRs. They have struggled badly recently, going 4-6 in their last 10, including the three game sweep at the hands of the Yankees, but could go on a run at any time given the talent they have in their line-up. The Yankees have six games left against them, including the final series of the season.

If either of these teams make a steadying move over the next week it could make the Yankees job a lot harder in the upcoming weeks.

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