Re: Yanks/Sox VI
posted at 9/13/2013 12:05 PM EDT
Interminable games, but almost always great baseball despite that. Good matchups this weekend, starting tonight. I can't wait even though I hate Sunday night games on espn.
A lot of credit goes to Girardi this year--credit to the Yankees for getting him. He helped his team by blowing the Dempster HBP of ARod up into a big deal and getting thrown out of the game. Dempster dumb, Girardi very smart. Aggressive with his bullpen.
That said, the Yankee players get a ton of credit for getting to this point despite all those guys on the DL during the season. Hitting is better, pitching is good enough, and bullpen is better than ours (except for closer--this year only, of course).
Worth noting about the last series. Yes, the Sox took 3 of 4 at the Stadium, but the Yankees had the lead in three of them because they had no problem crunching Sox pitching. Then they went to Camden Yards and took 3 of 4 from the Orioles, who are still in the wild card hunt.
We like to think that a 10 game lead is huge, but it in fact reflects a very small difference in winning percentage. So anything can happen in baseball. Long ago, the September Red Sox were just trying to steal an upset or two and sometimes win a series despite being near the bottom (or the middle) of the American League. And sometimes they did just that. And this Yankees team is not that much of an underdog and fully capable of winning this series.
That said, right now the Sox are playing awfully good ball. Pitching and hitting are both on track (despite all those runs the Yankees scored). Ellsbury so far is not missed, much, maybe because Farrell can go with Victorino in CF and Nava and Carp/Gomes in the other slots if he doesn't want to play Bradley, especially against a good lefty. Team chemistry is very good. Defense is not great, but good, especially in the infield. Oh, and I think Ortiz is hands down the best defensive DH in MLB. OK at 1B, but really good in the DH role, congratulating teammates for great plays.
Thanks, as always, to Jete for starting these threads.