State of the New York Yankees. Battle of the AL East, 44 games left, and reinforcements coming.

Updated: Aug 18, 2021

e·mo·tion·al roll·er coast·er

/əˈmōSH(ə)n(ə)l/ /ˈˌrōlər ˈkōstər/

noun

A situation or experience that alternates between making you feel excited, exhilarated, or happy and making you feel sad, disappointed, or desperate


If the 2021 Yankees were described in two words, that would be the perfect definition. The team either scores a shit ton of runs or they are scoreless. They pitch a gem or blow a game. They look sharp then they look sloppy. It is exhausting to figure out and watch at times and other times they are the most exciting team in baseball. The same thoughts come up each day, however.


Are the Yankees good?

Will they make the playoffs?

When healthy are they unstoppable?

Is our pitching decent?


All of these questions seem to have a different answer after every game. The state of the New York Yankees is an interesting case study, to say the least. They continue to win series and creep back up in the standings. So what do the next few weeks look like?

"Reinforcements are coming, reinforcements are coming!"


To be honest, I was getting tired of the "next-man-up mentality". I've discussed in the past, it is a cute little rally cry, but man... it is necessary nowadays. Tyler Wade has been a lifesaver. In his last 10 or so games, he's slashing .550 with a 1.340 OPS. Joey Gallo is smashing the ball, and it's been great having Luke Voit back.


All of this is great, but wait until our all-star IL comes home. Anthony Rizzo will return from COVID momentarily. Gio Ursehla is returning to baseball activities this week. Corey Kluber is making final rehab starts with SWB. Aroldis Champman will be making a rehab appearance sometime this week. Domingo German is throwing bullpen sessions. Miguel Andujar is working with AA Somerset. Gleybar Torres should be back soon too. Luis Severino got an MRI, but there is still hope for his return.


You can't get yourself too carried away but knock on wood, things are looking bright. When this team is together, oh baby. What does the lineup look like at full health?


1B: Anthony Rizzo

2B: DJ LeMahieu

SS: Gleybar Torres

3B: Gio Urshela

UTL: Rougned Odor

LF: Giancarlo Stanton

CF: Aaron Judge

RF: Joey Gallo

C: Gary Sanchez

DH: Luke Voit

Bench*: Kyle Higashioka, Brett Gardner, Tyler Wade


*could also include Greg Allen, Estevan Florial, Miguel Andujar or a platoon of AAA infielders


SP

- Gerrit Cole

- Jameson Taillon

- Jordan Montgomery

- Luis Gil

- Corey Kluber

- Luis Severino


Bullpen**

- Domingo German

- Wandy Peralta

- Nestor Cortes

- Lucas Luetge

- Clay Holmes

- Chad Green


** could also include Joely Rodriguez and Albert Abreau


Set Up: Jonathon Loisiga

Closer: Aroldis Chapman


They went from scraping AAA to not enough room on the roster. Bias aside, this is a World Series team, without question.


44 Games Left: What the next few weeks look like


WC: 1.5 games back

AL East: 3.5 games behind Boston, 5.5 behind 1st place Tampa Bay.




Not to be dramatic or to overexaggerate, but this Boston series this week is a must-win. To take over 2nd place would be a huge morale boost, and would help propel the team's confidence for the final weeks of the season. There are 44 games left, and the stretch of games is not easy. According to the Tankathon, the Yankees have the 20th easiest schedule remaining, with opponents' win percentage at .492. Out of those 44 games, 20 of them are against teams that can cause a threat to their postseason chances


- Blue Jays: 7 games

- Red Sox: 6 games

- A's: 4 games

- Rays: 3 games


Ideally, if they can take 5 from the Blue Jays, 4 from the Sox, 3 from the A's, and at least 1 from the Rays, they will be in really good shape.


The Keys to Success?

It's simple. Stay healthy, get hits, Boone manages the bullpen correctly, win games, and repeat.


My pick is an easy one. With Joey Gallo catching his stride and Anthony Rizzo set to return, you know the winning formula... get the ball to the Italians!

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