Friday, September 25, 2009

Breaking Down The Sox/Yanks Series

The series with the Red Sox kicks off tonight. It's a pretty big series. The Yankees could end up clinching the division or they could end up letting Boston right back into it.

A sweep by the Yankees and it's over. If the Yanks take two of 3, they can do no worse than tie for the division and that would only happen if the Yankees were to go 0-6 in their last 6 games while Boston went 7-0. That won't happen. So if the Yanks take 2 of 3, it's over. You can put it on the board.

If the Sox take 2 of 3, it would still take a lot for the Yanks to blow a 4.5 game lead with 6 to play. I don't see that happening. If they Yankees get swept, then things would get a little interesting.

A sweep by the Sox would mean the Yanks lead would be down to 2.5 with 6 to go. I still think they'd end up winning the East but it could turn into quite the battle. If the two teams end up tied at the end of the year, the East will go to the Sox because they'll have won the season series.

So in my eyes, the Yanks need to at leat win 1 of these next 3 games. I think that they will. Tonight's game pits Joba versus Jon Lester. This has to heavily favor the Sox. Lester is a great pitcher and Joba is well, not a great pitcher. The potential is there but the results aren't. Joba has done well against the Sox in the past so I wouldn't be surprised if he brings it tonight, but I don't see it happening. I'll be happily surprised if he pitches well. Joba should treat this as a playoff start. If he falters, yet again, the Yankees need to take a good look at keeping him out of the postseason rotation. I think game 1 of the series will go to the Sox. Unfortunately, the game is on My9 so I won't be watching. Thankfully, it's the last My9 game of the year. Hopefully, next year the My9 games are carried here. It's frustrating not being able to see these games. I'll definitely be following along though.

Saturday features CC versus Dice-K. CC, as we all know, is awesome. He definitely brings it when it gets down to the wire. He'll be going for win #19 and this pretty much makes or breaks his chance for 20 wins. I'm expecting a big game from the big guy. Dice-k has awful #s this year but has pitched well in his 2 starts since coming off the DL. I think this will be his first real test. The Yanks typically do well against him and I see no reason to think they won't again. I think the Yanks will take game 2.

In what hopefully will be their last meeting this year (because the Angels will knock the Sox out in the ALDS,) Andy Pettitte faces off against Paul Byrd. I think the advantage here goes to the Yanks, though not by a large margin. I think it could go either way. Pettitte does well against Boston (career: 17-9, 3.76 ERA . Byrd sometimes gives the Yankee hitters fits. I think this will be a close game with the Yanks edging it out.

I think the Yanks will take 2 of 3 and clinching no worse than a tie for the division, which is still not quite good enough because if they end up tied, they'll lose the division to the Sox via the tie-breaker. The Sox hold the edge this year winning 9 of the 15 games they've played. 1 win gives them the season series. For it to matter though, the Yanks would have to finish 0-6 and the Sox 7-0. Not going to happen. 2 wins this weekend and it's done.

I would love to see the Yanks sweep so they can celebrate while Boston is in town. In this rivalry, it's ideal to directly rub it into the other side's face. Clinching on Monday against the Royals just wouldn't be the same. Don't get me wrong, I'll take it, but I would absolutely love for it to happen on Sunday.

It all starts with Joba. Scary stuff.

Peace, love and Pinstripes,