Yankees Hold Key To AL East Wildcard
The final week of the 2011 baseball season is coming very quickly. While teams such as the Philadelphia Phillies & Detroit Tigers clinched a play-off spot, there is still some drama far east; the AL East that is.
The New York Yankees have a 6 game lead over the Boston Red Sox & a 8 game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays. The Yankees lead is somewhat comfortable seeing that the Yankees magic # is 3 to clinch a play-off spot & 4 to clinch the AL East, but for the Red Sox & Rays, it looks as if one of these teams are going home on September 28th, and it won’t be easy to determine who goes home, and who stays.
The Red Sox currently have a 2 game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays (they had an 11 game lead in the beginning of September) but the Red Sox aren’t playing good baseball. After yesterday’s DH they are 5-16 in September, with September easily being the worse month for the Red Sox this year. While the Red Sox have been horrendously slumping, the Tampa Bay Rays are surging. The Rays swept the Red Sox while they were at home in Tropicana Field & took 3 out of 4 in Fenway Park. Even though the Rays are 2 games back, there is something that is in both of the ways of the Red Sox & Rays; The New York Yankees.
The Yankees have a 4 game set in 3 days with the Rays, playing a double header Wednesday while the Red Sox play the Baltimore Orioles, but in order for the Rays to take the lead in the Wildcard, they would have to beat the Yankees & the Red Sox would have to lose. The Yankees technically hold the key to who wins the AL Wildcard, since they play both the Red Sox & Rays. While the Yankees even play both of the teams, they can clinch a play-off spot in the process, but the main question would be “Who gets the Wildcard?”
That answer won’t be revealed until the end of the season next week, but one thing is for sure…there will be A LOT of Red Sox fans cheering for the Yankees and only because they depend on the Yankees to widen the gap between the Rays & Red Sox for the American League Wildcard.