These weren’t just lucky wins or easy ones, rather they were a collection of well played games. Ones that the Yankees would have lost in April but that they managed to win in May. They scratched out a few runs against the likes of tough lefties like Jose Quintana, took advantage of miscues by team aces like David Price and Ian Kennedy (I know; still sounds weird) and managed to get contributions from players who had struggled mightily up until then.
During their 7-3 stretch, the Yankees avoided being shutout during their three losses and averaged almost 5 runs per game with players such as Aaron Hicks, Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius filling out the lineup and making up for the absence of players like Jacoby Ellsbury and Alex Rodriguez. Headley had a clutch pinch hit double on Sunday (this after breaking his season long XBH slump with a HR on Thursday and providing the only run against Chris Sale on Saturday) and Carlos Beltran continued his Hall Of Fame case (according to his manager) with a clutch HR on Sunday.
The offense was clicking so well that they were able to overcome the subpar pitching of Luis Severino, Michael Pineda and, to some extent, Masahiro Tanaka. All have 6+ ERAs over the past two starts, and Severino, after pitching abysmally on Friday, wound up on the DL. The best recent starter is Ivan Nova who only found himself back in the rotation due to an ill timed injury to CC Sabathia, who seemed to be rounding into shape. Nova will likely remain in the rotation given Severino’s injury and, as long as he can continue to get those ground ball outs, he should be an improvement to the starting five.
The Yankees even got to deploy their vaunted bullpen. I’m not sold on the No-Run DMC tagline but there’s no denying their effectiveness. While not as dominant in their second appearance as their first, they got the job done and locked down back to back wins over the weekend.
Now the Yankees take this show on the road to see if they can continue this success. The Yankees head out to Arizona then to Oakland (both teams that are struggling but can still put together a good series) before closing out the month against the division rival Blue Jays and Rays. The Yankees are 8-5 in May so far, but if they can keep up this solid play, they can make it a good month.
The Yankees dug themselves into this hole. Over the past 10 games, they’ve done a nice job of working themselves out of it. Time to keep it up!