There might not be a bigger series in the immediate future for the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays than the one that has the two AL East rivals facing off on August 7. New York has ridden an elite offense to the top of the division through the first half of the 2015 MLB season, but Toronto rests just 4.5 games back with an even better offense, based on the amount of runs scored by both clubs this season. When the two get together at Yankee Stadium for a three-game set this week, the aftermath could point to an eventual division winner.
There is naturally a ton on the line in this mammoth-sized clash, while bad rivalry blood and explosive offenses also add to the allure. If that wasn’t enough, the pure value of Yankees tickets in this particular matchup shoots this series through the roof when it comes to fans getting serious bang for their buck, with no games coming in at over $79 on average. Compared to the average Yankees ticket for the rest of the year (over $171), the discount is quite clear on the secondary market. On the primary market, all three games this series have discounts available for MasterCard card holders buying on Yankees.com.
The beauty of any matchup at Yankee Stadium is that power can always come in heavy doses. Combine the forces of two of the league’s most potent offenses, and fans could be in for a downright dirty pairing. Game one ($75.66 on average, $21 to get in) definitely rolls with that theme, as R.A. Dickey takes the mound for the Jays. Dickey has actually been quite good as of late, as the 40-year old knuckleballer has been fairly stingy in improving his overall numbers compared to where they stood earlier in the season. Keeping that up in Yankee Stadium won’t be easy, though, especially when he’s going up against big bats like Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez, both of whom own home runs opposing the right-hander.
If Toronto stifles the Yanks in the opener, the pinstripes might be in even more trouble come game two ($73.45 on average, $21 for the cheap seats), when they go up against familiar foe and former American League Cy Young award winner David Price. Toronto recently padded their pitching rotation with the elite arm and Price answered with a dominant debut against the Twins. Price will have to especially watch out for Brian McCann and Teixeira in this one, as both hitters own three career home runs off the staff ace.
Game three wraps this series up in style ($78.36, $21 to get in) with Marco Estrada slinging pitches to home plate. If the first two games don’t go as planned for the Yanks, this one is sure to, as Estrada offers up major power connection on his pitches. Estrada has followed suit of Dickey and Price with strong play as of late, but has still had some trouble with getting New York’s better bats out and could be primed for a letdown at Yankee Stadium.
The writing on the wall is evident: this isn’t a series the Yankees can afford to lose. Toronto was active on the trade market by acquiring Troy Tulowitzki to beef up a league-leading offense and Price to bolster their sluggish pitching rotation. Now fully equipped to take over the AL East, the Blue Jays will try to use this week’s three-game series to push closer to that goal. It’s up to New York’s bats to use Yankee Stadium to their advantage and keep the Blue Jays at bay.