Saturday, October 2, 2010

AL East Plot Thickens

Rain washed out the first game of the Yankees-Red Sox series at Fenway last night. It's a day-night doubleheader today, with the first game a Fox Saturday Game of the Week 4:00 start. Andy Pettitte, who was supposed to start for the Yankees last night, starts today, against Tim Wakefield. Pettitte, 38 years old and 11-3 this season, has talked about retiring after this season; Wakefield, 44 and 4-10, probably should've retired after last season, 'cause the knuckleball ain't workin' no more.

In the nightcap, A.J. Burnett (oy vey) starts against Daisuke Matsuzaka, who was supposed to start last night. Even though the Yankees usually have trouble on Fox, my Pinstriped gut tells me the Yanks will win the opener but lose the nightcap.

Last night, the Kansas City Royals did the Yankees a favor by beating the Tampa Bay Rays, 7-0. That puts the Yanks a half-game up, 1 in the loss column. So here's the scenarios as the AL East plot thickens:

Yankees sweep today and win tomorrow: Yanks would finish at 97-65, so even if the Rays win today and tomorrow, they would "only" be 96-66, and the Yanks win. There you have it: In that great cliche of sports, the Yankees "control their own destiny." By losing last night, the Rays ensured that if the Yanks just win their own games, they win. Granted, winning 3 games at Fenway is always tough, especially when it's 3 games in 24 hours (4:10 or so today to roughly the same time tomorrow). But if the Yanks win, the Rays are stuck in the Wild Card.

Yanks take 2 out of 3: Yanks would finish at 96-66, so Rays would have to win today and tomorrow to finish with the same record and, holding the tiebreaker of head-to-head play, win the Division, otherwise the Yankees win it.

Yanks only take 1: Yanks would finish at 95-67, so Rays would only have to split the 2 games with K.C. to win the Division.

The American League Division Series, both of them, start on Wednesday night. If the Yankees win the Division, they host the Texas Rangers, while the Rays go to Minnesota to play the Twins. If the Rays win the Division, then they host Texas while the Yankees go to Minnesota.

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East Brunswick High beat Woodbridge last night, 7-0 in the rain, thanks to a fumble recovery. I didn't go, and I'm glad I didn't, it sounded like a dull game in lousy weather. The Bears are now 3-1, with a week off, and while Sayreville and Piscataway are still on the horizon, a return trip to the Playoffs is still very possible.

Rutgers gets underway against Tulane in about 40 minutes. I'm not going, but my father and some of his friends did.

One week to regular-season hockey!

And, oh yeah, it's October 2! Happy Bucky Dent Day! And where are the Yankees today? Why, Fenway Park, of course. Hmmmm, maybe that's a good omen.

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