Friday, September 28, 2007

On July 4th 2007 it would have been reasonable to assume that the New York Yankees were on their way to missing the playoffs for the first time under manager Joe Torre. The Bronx Bombers were 40-42 11.5 behind the division leading Boston Red Sox.

Fast forward to the last weekend of September and the Yankees have come back from the dead to clinch a playoff spot and are only 2 games behind the Red Sox for the AL East title.

How could this have happened. Their starting pitching outside of Chien-Meng Wang and Andy Pettitte has been abysmal. Mike Mussina and Roger Clemens are showing their age and the bullpen has had a revolving door on it all season.

The easiest answer is likely AL MVP Alex Rodriguez and the surrounding offense. ARod is having arguably his finest season as a pro. They aren't called the "Bombers" for nothing folks. Jorge Posada, Hideki Matsui, are also having big seasons for the Yanks along with the captain, Derek Jeter.

Cleveland on the other hand has been strong all season long tied for the best overall record in MLB. Led by the 1-2 punch of lefty C.C. Sabathia and right hander Fausto Carmona. The Tribe's offense is also a team full of boppers like the Yanks, featuring five starters (Grady Sizemore, Travis Hafner, Victor Martinez, Ryan Garko and Jhonny Peralta) with 20 plus home runs, six if third baseman Casey Blake can pop two over the boards this weekend.

Unlike the Angels and Red Sox, the Indians and Yankees are hot going into the post season so it should be a very interesting series to watch. Neither team has a very strong bullpen so these games could turn into late inning track meets.

Prediction: Yankees in 5
Yankees "maturity" will overcome a young Cleveland ballclub.
Love to hear what you think!


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