Sports

The Bomber Breakdown: Yankees look to climb back into AL East contention

It was Aug. 5 and the New York Yankees were walked off by the Boston Red Sox to complete a four-game sweep for the Red Sox,  raising the team’s division lead to
9.5 games.

All confidence was lost in the Yankees and their fans were ready to give up on the division to look right to the wild-card game.

After their series with the Red Sox, the Yankees went on to play their next few series against all the teams that have a winning percentage below .500.

This clearly seems like something that should help the Bronx Bombers, but after going 9-4 in their next 13 games, their division deficit somehow grew to
10.5 games.

In recent times, however, the Yankees have had greater luck. Since they fell to 10.5 back, they have gained four wins and are now only six games behind the Red Sox.

The Yankees continued their gameplay against sub-.500 teams, the Miami Marlins and the Baltimore Orioles, in which they won five of their six games.

Better yet, the Red Sox went 2-4 during these six games. The winning streak has given life back to the Yankees and their fans. Sitting at 83-47, the Yankees are only five games behind the Red Sox in the loss column, and if somehow they can have the same amount of losses by the time of their next series, the Yankees will have a real shot of being able to take over the American League East.

Throughout these recent 19 games, the Yankees have been faced with some very key injuries that many thought would really affect this team. These injured players include Aaron Judge, Didi Gregorius, Gary Sánchez and Aroldis Chapman. With these names on the disabled list, many assumed that this would help the Red Sox completely run away, but it has actually brought the Yankees closer together and helped them realize that they are a very strong team, even without four of their best players.

What has helped New York realize this were the acquisitions of J.A. Happ and Lance Lynn. The Yankees went out at the trade deadline and addressed their most-needed area — starting pitching.

They had many struggles in their rotation between starters such as Sonny Gray, Domingo German and even ace Luis Severino. The Yankees’ general manager, Brian Cashman, fixed this with the acquisitions of the two starters, turning around the rotation. Since joining the Yankees, Happ has gone 5-0 with a superb 2.37 ERA in 30
innings and Lynn has gone 1-1 with a 3.81 ERA in 26 innings.

The new additions have really helped keep the Yankees in games; though they were winning ball games, New York hitters had a tough time scoring runs at one point.

The lineup has stepped up as of late, led by rookie phenom Miguel Andújar, who has been scorching hot in the second half of the year. Since the All-Star break, he is batting .357 in 35 games with nine home runs and 33 runs. Besides Andújar, superstar slugger Giancarlo Stanton has been heating up. Stanton has definitely picked up his production for this lineup and has set the tone for the remaining batters.

The Yankees look forward to continuing their hot streak and being able to gain ground on the Red Sox in the division. Yogi Berra once said, “It ain’t over till it’s over,” so there is no reason why Yankee fans should not be confident in
their team.

September 3, 2018

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Matteo Flamio


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