After a 6-1 week two weeks ago, the Yankees had a shaky 1-5 week last week. They lost two out of three against the Blue Jays before getting swept by the Tigers this weekend. They went back to their offensive struggles, scoring two runs or less in all five losses, and five runs in the game they won. Here are three things to watch for this week as the Yankees try to get back on track.
Is this the Most Important Week of the Season so Far?
The Yankees currently sit at 29-24, which is 4 1/2 games behind in the American League East. The two teams ahead of them, the Red Sox and the Rays, are the teams the Yankees are playing this week. This is a huge opportunity for the Yankees to get closer to first in the division. Also, New York has home field advantage in both of these series, which could play a big role in the outcome of this week. So yes, this week is one of, if not the most important for the Yankees so far this season.
Although the offense went cold this week, the Yankees haven’t needed to score much when Gerrit Cole is on the mound. Cole is scheduled to get two starts this week on Tuesday and Sunday. Through 11 starts, Cole has a 1.78 ERA in 70 2/3 innings pitched. He also has a very impressive MLB leading 10.78 strikeout-to-walk ratio. If Cole continues to pitch the way he has been, he could get the Yankees in position for two wins this week.
In Aaron Judge’s last 30 games, he has a slash line of .337/.417/.635. That gives him a 1.052 OPS in his last 30 contests. The 29-year-old is putting up very productive stats, which is not uncommon for him when he is staying away from injuries. Judge will get a chance to slug against division opponents in the Bronx this week to help turn this offense around.
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