Game 147: Desperate Times

(Maddie Meyer/Getty)
(Maddie Meyer/Getty)

The best and worst thing about baseball is that they play every damn day. Today, that’s a good thing. Last night’s loss was brutal, as bad as any regular season loss I can remember, but at least the Yankees have a chance to turn the page in the second game of the series tonight. A short memory is a good thing in this game.

Right now the second wildcard spot projects out to 89 wins, which means the Yankees need to go 12-4 the rest of the way just to tie. That is … rough. They’ve dropped four of five since the seven-game winning streak, and there were definitely some winnable games among those four losses. Those are the kind of losses the Yankees can’t afford now. Here is the Red Sox’s lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. 2B Starlin Castro
  5. SS Didi Gregorius
  6. 3B Chase Headley
  7. DH Brian McCann
  8. 1B Mark Teixeira
  9. RF Mason Williams
    RHP Luis Cessa

It’s another cool and clear night in Boston. September baseball weather all the way. Tonight’s game will begin at 7:10pm ET and you can watch on WPIX locally and MLB Network nationally. Try to enjoy.

Game 146: Start of the Road Trip

Hold me. (Presswire)
Hold me. (Presswire)

Would it be a stretch to call this a season-defining road trip? I don’t think so. The Yankees are going to come out of this eleven-game road trip either firmly in the race with a chance to go to the postseason, or so far out of it we’ll all know the season’s basically over. This is make or break time, folks.

The Yankees are in Boston for the first of four with the Red Sox tonight, so we’re in for a bunch of nice low-intensity ballgames that are in no way stressful and definitely won’t last more than two-and-a-half hours. No way will these four games feature 16 hours of gut-wrenching baseball. No siree. Here is the Red Sox’s lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. 2B Starlin Castro
  5. DH Billy Butler
  6. SS Didi Gregorius
  7. 3B Chase Headley
  8. RF Rob Refsnyder
  9. 1B Tyler Austin
    RHP Masahiro Tanaka

It’s a cool and clear night in Boston. Definitely gonna have a postseason baseball feel to it. Tonight’s game will begin at 7:10pm ET, and you’ll be able to watch on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy the game.

Roster Move: The Yankees officially announced the Butler signing earlier today. He’s in the starting lineup, so duh. Nathan Eovaldi was transferred to the 60-day DL to clear a roster spot.

Injury Update: Aaron Judge (oblique) has a Grade II strain and is officially done for the year. Those take a while to heal. He’s expected to be good to go for Spring Training though. The Yankees placed Judge on the 15-day DL for whatever reason.

News: The Yankees announced earlier today they will hold a pregame ceremony honoring David Ortiz prior to their game on Thursday, September 29th. That will be Ortiz’s final game in the Bronx. Go forth with faux outrage.

Game 145: Beat the Best

(Presswire)
(Presswire)

Today the Yankees will play their final game of the season against a non-AL East team. They’re also going to face the best pitcher in the world. I suppose the good news is Clayton Kershaw is not at full strength right now. This is his second start back from a two-and-a-half month DL stint due to a back injury.

Kershaw threw only three innings and 66 pitches last time out, and he looked pretty rusty as well. The expectation for today is something like five innings and 80 pitches, apparently. That’s better than facing Kershaw at full strength, but Kershaw at like 75% is still better than about 90% of pitchers out there. Gonna be tough. Here is the Dodgers’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. 2B Starlin Castro
  5. 3B Chase Headley
  6. SS Didi Gregorius
  7. RF Rob Refsnyder
  8. DH Austin Romine
  9. 1B Tyler Austin
    RHP Michael Pineda

It’s a little cloudy in New York today and there’s actually a tiny little bit of rain in the forecast later this evening too. It doesn’t look like it’ll be anything too heavy though. Maybe just a quick shower. This afternoon’s series finale is scheduled to begin at 4:05pm ET and you can watch on YES. Enjoy.

Injury Update: Brian Cashman said Aaron Judge (oblique) will very likely miss the rest of the season. They don’t have the results of today’s MRI yet, but it sure sounds like they’re not counting on him coming back. Sucks … in case you missed it earlier, Mason Williams was called up to effectively replace Judge on the roster.

Game 144: Time’s Running Out

(Presswire)
(Presswire)

Including tonight, the Yankees have 19 games remaining this season. The current standings indicate it’ll take 88 wins to get the second wildcard spot, so the Yankees have to go 12-7 from here on out to get there. That doesn’t seem too bad! They’re 13-6 in their last 19 games, after all. Doable. Very doable.

That’s all well and good, but the Yankees are going to face the best pitcher on the planet tomorrow, then they’re going out on an eleven-game, three-city road trip. That is: daunting. Tonight’s game is pretty important, especially on the heels of those last two losses. Here is the Dodgers’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. CF Brett Gardner
  2. LF Rob Refsnyder
  3. DH Gary Sanchez
  4. 2B Starlin Castro
  5. 1B Mark Teixeira
  6. C Brian McCann
  7. 3B Chase Headley
  8. RF Aaron Judge
  9. SS Ronald Torreyes
    LHP CC Sabathia

The weather is perfect again in New York today. A little warmer than yesterday, otherwise pretty much the same. Great night for an important late-season ballgame. Tonight’s game will begin at 7:05pm ET and you can watch on YES locally and MLB Network nationally.

Injury Update: Didi Gregorius took ground balls and hit in the batting cage today, and is available off the bench if necessary. He’s feeling better but is still a little beat up. Gregorius has been hit by some pitches and taken a few foul balls to the legs the last two weeks or so.

Game 143: The Random Mid-September Interleague Series

(Christopher Pasatieri/Getty)
(Christopher Pasatieri/Getty)

One of the many joys of modern baseball is the random interleague series in the middle of the September postseason push. The Dodgers are in town for three games this week and that’s pretty cool. Unfortunately it also means the Yankees won’t be playing head-to-head games against one of the teams they’re chasing in the standings. They’ll need help to gain ground tonight.

Bryan Mitchell will make second his big league start of the season tonight, and the first went very well. He held the high-powered Blue Jays scoreless over five innings. Toronto also had eight right-handed batters in their lineup that day. The Dodgers have six lefties and one switch-hitter in the lineup tonight. Pretty big difference. Here is the Dodgers’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. 2B Starlin Castro
  5. DH Brian McCann
  6. 3B Chase Headley
  7. 1B Tyler Austin
  8. RF Aaron Judge
  9. SS Ronald Torreyes
    RHP Bryan Mitchell

Absolutely gorgeous night for baseball here in New York. Nice and cool with a slight breeze, and only a few clouds in the sky. Autumnal. Tonight’s game will begin at 7:05pm ET and you can watch on YES. Enjoy the game.

Injury Updates: Didi Gregorius is “really beat up” and could sit tomorrow too, said Joe Girardi. All the recent hit-by-pitches and foul balls off his legs are taking their toll. Gregorius is available tonight if necessary … Aaron Hicks (hamstring) has resumed running and hitting in the cage. He’s going to head to Tampa at the end of the homestand to ramp up his rehab work, and he could be activated off the DL next week.

Game 142: Make it Eight

(Jim McIsaac/Getty)
(Jim McIsaac/Getty)

The Yankees are red hot right now, having won seven straight games and 13 of their last 17. There is still much work to be done before a postseason spot is secure, of course. After today, the Yankees play 17 of their final 20 games against good to great teams, so the schedule is about to get really difficult. Get the win today and worry about tomorrow tomorrow. Here is the Rays’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. DH Brian McCann
  5. 1B Mark Teixeira
  6. SS Didi Gregorius
  7. 3B Chase Headley
  8. RF Aaron Judge
  9. 2B Ronald Torreyes
    RHP Luis Cessa

It’s a little cloudy in New York today, but otherwise it’s just a splendid day for baseball. Good day for a sweep. Today’s game will begin at 1:05pm ET and you can watch on YES. Enjoy.

Game 141: Keep Pace

(Jim McIsaac/Getty)
(Jim McIsaac/Getty)

Here’s the reality of today: the Yankees can not gain ground in the wildcard race. They can only lose ground. The Orioles and Tigers are tied for the second wildcard spot, and since they’re playing each other, one is guaranteed to win. The Yankees can, at best, keep place in the wildcard race today. That’s a bummer, but it is what it is.

The Yankees can only control their games. No sense in worrying about the Orioles and Tigers. The Bombers are trying for their seventh straight win this afternoon, and even though they have their ace on the mound, it would behoove the offense to score early and often. The bullpen is in a perpetual state of being worn down these days, and several end-game relievers figure to be unavailable. Here is the Rays’ lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:

  1. LF Brett Gardner
  2. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  3. C Gary Sanchez
  4. SS Didi Gregorius
  5. 2B Starlin Castro
  6. DH Brian McCann
  7. RF Rob Refsnyder
  8. 1B Tyler Austin
  9. 3B Ronald Torreyes
    RHP Masahiro Tanaka

It’s hot, humid, and a bit cloudy in New York today. There’s no rain in the forecast, thankfully. None of us want to see Mike Everitt jump the gun and call for the tarp again. This afternoon’s game will begin at 4:05pm ET and you can watch on YES locally and MLB Network nationally. Enjoy the game.

Update (3:40pm ET): The internet lied to me. Can you believe that? It’s raining right now. It’s not supposed to be a long shower though, so the game will begin soon enough.

Update (3:59pm ET): The Yankees say the game will begin at 4:30pm ET or so.