A lot can change in 30 games. Doubters can become believers. Casual fans can become die-hard fans. And kids can become adults. That is exactly What has transpired With the 2017 New York Yankees. The ‘baby bombers’ have lost their diapers, skipped past the pull-ups stage, and jumped right into boxer briefs. They are shattering expectations one home-run at a time.
After Monday night’s 10-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds, the Yankees now hold Major League Baseball’s best record (21-9). This is following a 1-4 start to the season, so the Yankees have actually gone on a 20-5 run in their last 25 games. That’s insane! Anyway….
They continue to Win decisively, as 13 of their 21 victories have been decided by 3 runs or more. The Yankees, led by a powerful offense, have become no stranger to the long ball. No team has hit more home runs per game than the Yankees. They currently average 1.66 home runs per game, having hit 50 in their first 30 games. Yup, you guessed it. Aaron Judge leads the team with 13 home runs.
Prior to the season their starting pitching staff was riddled with question marks. These questions have all been answered with the affirmative, so far. The Yankees pitching staff ranks 4th in e.r.a (earned run average – 3.52) and 1st in b.a.a. (opponents batting average – .227). We knew their bullpen would be stellar, and it has been, but many expected their starters to falter. Well outside of C.C. Sabathia’s last two starts, the Yankees’ starting pitchers have been very good. But hey, pssst….guess what the Yankees did in C.C.’s last two starts?? That’s right..they Won.
Your level of success is often measured by expectations. Every year, the machine at ESPN asks 35 of their baseball experts to predict the playoffs for the upcoming season (click here to check it out). As you can see, only 1 expert (Steve Wulf) picked the Yankees to Win the American League East Division. And I think these expectations, While appropriate, are exactly what the Yankees needed. The young core of the new look Yankees didn’t need the pressure of trying to live up to the 1998 Yankees. Who could anyway right?? This Yankees regime may have gone from sellers to buyers in just one year. But, as the season flips the calendar from June to October, and the Yankees continue their Winning Ways, pressure will mount naturally. The question is, how Will Aaron Judge and his young brethren handle the pressure?
As a life long Yankees fan, nothing Would make me happier than a historical World Series run, but I am one of the few realistic Yankees’ fans that has ever existed. As fun as this team has been to watch, and as good as I think they will be for years to come, I expect the other shoe to drop at some point during the season. While I don’t expect them to implode, I do expect them to come back to reality, slightly. Between the pressure that inherently joins us in August and September and the inevitable peaks and valleys of a marathon baseball season, I see the Yankees finishing as the 1st Wild-Card Playoff Team. Don’t jump me yet! Just keep Watching Yankees games, keep reading DaveTalksSports.com, and check back in September so I can say ‘I told ya so!’
What do you think? Will the Yankees continue to win at this rapid rate, or will they cool off as the summer heats up? Tell me in the comment section below.
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