MLB: Day Eighty-Four

Against the San Francisco Giants on Saturday, the New York Yankees let a good lead slip away and in so doing they failed to gain a game in the standings. The Yankees seemed to be in total control of the game from the outset. The Yanks scored three runs in the third inning and then one more in the fifth to take a four to one lead. In fact, the Yankees had over ten hits as they headed into the bottom of the fifth.

But it was failing to plate the majority of runners that did the Yankees in at the end.

The Giants managed to tie the game up and then take the lead when they scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh. That one run lead almost held up but Alex Rodriguez (who’s been very hot again) hit a solo homer in the top of the ninth. However, the Giants would go on to win the game in the bottom of the thirteenth.

The current problem for the Yankees is their bullpen. And that is a huge problem. Because they have solid starters and a great closer (Mariano Rivera), but if the guys in the bullpen can’t hold the lead to get from the starter to Rivera then the Yankees are cooked. And most of the Yankees’ starters aren’t able to last more than 6 innings either. That means there’s always going to be a nice big window for opponents in the seventh and the eighth innings. The Giants got back into that game on Saturday because of their three run outburst in the seventh inning.

Wow, the race in the National League West is staying very competitive. Four teams – the San Diego Padres, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Arizona Diamondbacks, and the Colorado Rockies – are above .500 in that division. And three of those teams – the Padres, Dodgers, and Diamondbacks – are separated by only a .5 game. The Padres and Diamondbacks are tied atop the division while the Dodgers trail by only a .5 game.

I’m not one to buy into East Coast bias, but the fact that very little of this race is getting pub shows there is at least some truth to the whole bias argument. Imagine if this was happening in the AL or the NL East? Imagine if it was say the Red Sox, the Yankees, and the Orioles? I dare say that would be the lead story on Sports Center every night.

We’ll see what happens tomorrow as teams wrap-up interleague play for this year and get ready to head into the All-Star Game and then into an even more important part of the season.  

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