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Alex Rodriguez: Will the Wolverine of Baseball Save the Day?

If there is a game-changing moment in the Bronx during the ALCS, expect nothing less than to have Alex Rodriguez in the middle of it.  Good or bad.

Much like Marvel comic book character Wolverine, Yankees third baseman A-Rod just wants to fit in and be liked.

Is A-Rod a bit over dramatic at times and overexposed?  Sure.  However, he has earned his reputation and popularity for a reason, the guy is good at baseball.

Alex is arguably one of the best players to ever play on the baseball diamond.

The guy just wanted to be liked; by nearly everyone, and that is impossible.

He wasn’t well liked before the 2009 steroid admission, from a supposed drug use during the 2003 season with the Texas Rangers.  Once that word got out he was one of the “cheaters,” bad went to worse.

On top of all of his injuries, personal pain and playoff failures, Rodriguez battled back to the top.

He got as far as he could go in 2009, winning his first World Series title and having clutch moment after clutch moment that post season with New York.

That year must seem like a blur to Alex, because he didn’t do much before that in the playoffs and hasn’t done much after that.

Call that year his “climax” if you will, because his numbers seem to be deteriorating by the second.

Rodriguez has dealt with a lot of suffering and heartache throughout his Major League career, some you could say is his own fault, or maybe he is just guilty by association.

Heading into the 2012 postseason, Rodriguez was ready to put the past couple of seasons behind him and climb that mountain once again.

This postseason has the makings of being his worse.

If hitting .125 with nine strikeouts and no extra-base hits isn’t bad enough, Raul Ibanez came in to pinch hit for him in Game 3.

Ibanez not only pinch hit for Rodriguez, he hit the game-tying and game-winning homeruns for the Yankees that night.

A-Rod was pinch hit for again with Game 4 on the line, with Eric Chavez lining out to end the game.

To make matters worse, in Game 5, he couldn’t stay out of the headlines, after being benched by Yankees manager Joe Girardi.

The Yankees managed to secure the Game 5 victory over the Baltimore Orioles in the ALDS to move onto the ALCS against the Detroit Tigers.

After an extra day of rest and some motivation to go along with it, Rodriguez should return to the Yankees lineup raring to go on Saturday night in the Bronx.

Will he try to do too much at the plate to please the Yankees faithful, or will he relax and let his talent take over at the dish?

If he can calm his nerves and channel his energy, we could be seeing the rebirth of the 2009 Alex Rodriguez and a storybook playoff comeback performance.

Stay tuned.


Follow me on Twitter @nyyrobinson.

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2012 MLB Post Season: Most Prominent Player on Each Team

If the 2012 MLB Regular Season ended today, the following teams that haven’t clinched just yet would be going to playoffs:

New York Yankees (AL East Leader), Chicago White Sox (AL Central Leader), Texas Rangers (AL West Leader), Baltimore Orioles (AL Wild Card), Oakland Athletics (AL Wild Card), Atlanta Braves (NL Wild Card), St Louis Cardinals (NL Wild Card)

Along with those seven, these three teams have already made playoffs:

Cincinnati Reds (NL Central Champions), San Francisco Giants (NL West Champions), Washington Nationals (NL East Leader)

Let’s say things remain this way for the final stretch run of the regular season and these are the teams that make it into the big show, I will list one player for each team, the “x-factor” if you will, who has to come through in order for their respective team to advance further into October.

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Diamond in the Ivy: 1983 Chicago Cubs Team-Signed Ball

A rare find.

Cubbie fans, you won’t believe this one.

While visiting with my parents today, I noticed a baseball inside the house and didn’t think much of it.

I have a little brother who is 12, so I just figured it was something of his not valuable since it was lying around.

When I picked it up, a name jumped out at me instantly: Bill Buckner.

Being the Yankee fan that I am, I was thinking this was a Red Sox baseball right off the bat.

Before I got too excited and started investigating the names on the ball, I wanted to be sure that the autographs were real.

One thought I had at first is, did printed baseballs exist back then? I didn’t think so.

The other thing was that most of the autographs had a thick look to them, as if the ink was fading, which made me think it was authentic.

I asked my mom where she found it, and she said it washed down the creek in the backyard.

Very odd place to find an autographed baseball, but that’s where it was found.

The condition of the baseball is another thing…I’d give it a five out of 10. Not bad considering how old it is and the fact that some key autographs are still looking good.

So, then the fun began.

I started to look up the players on the ball, one by one, to figure out the team…that didn’t take long.

The Chicago Cubs.

Then the hard part: What year was the ball?

I wanted it to be 1982, because of Ryan Sandberg’s rookie season.

However, when I saw the name Ron Cey, I knew the ball was from the following year, 1983, because when the Cubs brought Cey on to play center field, Sandberg moved to second, and the rest is history.

Also, I knew it was 1983 and not 1984 because manager Lee Elia is on the ball. He was replaced by Jim Frey in 1984.

So, I know this is a 1983 Cubs baseball, with 25 autographs on it, and it looks real. I will find out later this week if it is real.

I wanted to share this story with you guys—you just never know what you are going to come across.

This reminds me of the show on the History Channel, Pawn Stars. I wish I lived near Las Vegas; I would bring the ball into the shop.

I can make out plenty of names on this baseball besides Sandberg, Buckner, Elia and Cey, as already described.

Lee Smith, Jerry Morales, Larry Bowa, Wayne Nordhagen, Scott Thompson, Junior Kennedy, Willie Hernandez, Steve Trout, Mike Proly, Tom Veryzer, Dickie Noles, Jody Davis, Fergie Jenkins, Steve Lake, Bill Campbell, Gary Woods, Keith Moreland, Paul Maskau, Warren Brusstar, Leon Durham and Jay Johnstone.

All 25 names on the ball are visible. The only ones you can barely see are Durham, Brusstar, Johnstone and Maskau.

Joe Carter’s autograph isn’t on the ball, though he was on the team.

The most interesting fact: Every name on this ball is still living, though a few players and coaches on the team but not on the ball have passed.

I don’t know what else to say about this find, except that it was really fun trying to figure out what team it was. Now that I have, I hope it is real.


Follow me on Twitter @nyyrobinson.

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ALCS Game 3: Why Cliff Lee Is No Guarantee

Game 3, American League Championship Series, Cliff Lee of the Texas Rangers vs. Andy Pettitte of the New York Yankees.  

“In my opinion he’s probably the best postseason pitcher of all time just by the number of wins and the number of rings he’s got,” Lee says of Pettitte.

However, it is Cliff Lee that has been doing things in the postseason that Andy Pettitte, or any other pitcher for that matter has ever done.

Making it look as easy as pie, Lee has mowed down anything put in his path.

Pettitte, asked what he thinks of Lee, responds: “You see everything that you want to see in a starting pitcher to be successful. He throws strikes. He throws quality strikes. He gets ahead. He changes speeds. And, you know, I think what is separating him from any other pitcher right now is really his cutter, how late it is.”

The Yankees will try to hit that cutter as hard as they can when Lee and the Rangers travel to Yankee Stadium on Monday night.

The series is tied 1-1 and Game 3 is looking like a momentum swing for either team.

Pettitte is the all-time leader in post season victories, with 19.

The most shocking stat is that of Lee’s, seven post season starts has garnered him a 6-0 record, with a 1.44 ERA.


Yankees manager Joe Girardi wanted to remind the media before Game 3, that Lee isn’t the only pitcher in this game, “The guy that’s getting lost in this is Andy Pettitte, and he’s pretty good.”

What is also getting lost in all of this Cliff Lee talk is the Yankees offense is still scary and no pitcher is invisible against them.

If the Yankees offense wants to hit Lee, they are going to need to do it early and often.

Waiting on your pitch isn’t going to work, being patient isn’t going to work.

In his seven post season starts, Lee has only walked six, while striking out 54.

The strikeout to walk ratio stat jumps out at me and tells me one thing, Lee will throw strikes often, and you got to jump on his pitches.

However, that cutter rivals Mariano Rivera’s and is going to be hard to it.

If anyone can hit Lee, the Yankees can.

With a left-hander going against the Yankees, Nick Swisher will likely take the number two spot in the lineup, while Lance Berkman will likely sit.

In two games this year, Derek Jeter has managed to hit Lee quite well, hitting 3-for-5.  A couple of those hits went for extra bases, a double and a triple.

In the most surprising stat, Lee only walked three Yankees this year, Jeter had two of those, and also wasn’t a victim of one of Lee’s 16 strikeouts against New York.

Jeter could be a huge piece for the puzzle tonight if the Yankees want to score runs and win this game, and he could be the tone setter the entire evening.

If the Yankees want to defend their World Series title from last season and continue their quest to 28, winning this game is more huge then words can describe.

Follow me on Twitter @nyyrobinson.

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ALCS 2010: Rod-Shank Redemption

The 1994 film Shawshank Redemption claims that “fear can hold you prisoner, hope can set you free.”

The 16 year career of Alex Rodriguez has seen its shares of ups and downs over the years.

From the taboo Yankees contract opt-out announcement during the Red Sox 2007 World Series clincher, to the steroid admission in 2009.  Life in Major League Baseball hasn’t been too good for Rodriguez.

However, all of that turned itself around in a blink of an eye in the Fall of 2009.

Despite all of the past performances of being considered a “non-clutch” performer, Rodriguez proved them all wrong.

The guy who once stranded any and every runner on base during the postseason, snapped out of his wicked spell.

Highlights included, a game-tying home run of Minnesota Twins closer Joe Nathan in the bottom of the ninth inning in game two of the ALDS, a game-tying home run off Carl Pavano in game three of the ALDS, and a third game-tying home run off of Angels pitcher Brian Fuentes in game two of the ALCS in the bottom of the 11th inning.

Just to make things more interesting, his first World Series hit, was a home run reviewed by instant replay, off a camera lens above the wall in right field in game three.

It seems to me that the thing that was getting in the way of Rodriguez the most, was himself.  After he relaxed and let the game come to him, things started to happen.

His hard work and outstanding play was rewarded by the Yankees receiving their 27th World Championship in 2010, A-Rod’s first.

Now that the Yankees have swept the Minnesota Twins in the 2010 ALDS, a tougher opponent, the Texas Rangers, await the Yankees arrival in Arlington.

Again, some focus turns towards Rodriguez, as he is playing his former team and still has a lot to prove.

One amazing postseason performance doesn’t seem to have the city of New York behind Rodriguez just yet. Frankly, I don’t think it will ever matter how good he does.  When he strikes out looking, he’s booed, when he hits a home run, he is cheered, simple as that.  

Surprisingly, Rodriguez is 8-for-30 (.267), has two home runs and seven runs-batted-in off of Rangers’ ace Cliff Lee.

In game one, C.J. Wilson will start for the Rangers, a man that A-Rod is only one-for-13 lifetime against.

If A-Rod stinks it up this postseason, the media and fans will have forgotten all about last years performance and will be looking for more results this year.

That is the kind of pressure that comes with a contract the size of Rodriguez’s.

However, don’t be surprised when A-Rod hits the baseball right down your throat as he helps the Yankees secure another spot in the World Series.

Some sports writers and papers seem to think differently about Rodriguez’s future performance this postseason.  Those same writers most likely thought wrong last season and they will be wrong again this season.

Just because you don’t like him, doesn’t mean he won’t perform well out there for his team.

Lately, he has been in the business of proving people wrong, and I love every moment of it.

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Moment Of Truth For Yankees in 2010 Starts Tonight

World Champions, the New York Yankees begin their quest for back-to-back titles as they take their show on the road to play the Twins in Minnesota in the opening round of the 2010 MLB Playoffs.

The Yankees faced the Twins last year in the ALDS, but that was then. This is now.

This year, the Yankees are the Wild Card, and the Twins have the home field advantage—a brand new field, at that.

Target Field will see its first playoff game ever on Wednesday night and is the first outdoor playoff game by the Twins since 1970.

CC Sabathia (21-7, 3.18 ERA) takes the ball for the Bronx Bombers in game one. Sabathia is all too familiar in this role and has had no problem pitching big for the Yankees in big games.  So far, so good.

The Twins counter with their promising left-handed youngster Francisco Liriano (14-10, 3.62).  He will be making his very first postseason start. It is worth noting that the Yankees have lost their last nine match-ups against teams where the starting pitchers were left handed.

The Yankees’ bats shouldn’t have any problem heating up for the playoffs, but can the pitching hold up?

The Twins lineup will be without Justin Morneau due to post-concussion syndrome, and he will miss the remainder of the postseason.

Derek Jeter is the focus for the New York media this October as he is playing in a contract year. Can he turn that switch on like he always does and perform in the playoffs?  His future in pinstripes likely depends on it.

Alex Rodriguez has nothing left to prove after his amazing clutch performance through the entire post season last year.

Rodriguez has the playoff monkey off his back, replacing it with a World Series ring on his finger.

However, the Yankees lineup will need him to play good baseball if they want to repeat.  Batting in between Mark Teixeira and Robinson Cano in the fourth spot, he will see many crucial opportunities to come through for the team.

The one good thing for the Yankees in the first round is an opponent they are no stranger to beating.

Sweeping them out of playoffs last year, and winning the season the season series 4-2, the Yankees have to feel good going into this.

However, most players do feel that the past has no bearing on the present.

We’ll find out if the underdog Twins can finally defeat their arch nemesis, the Yankees.

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New York Yankees Take AL East Lead with Alex Rodriguez Clutch Homer

The Yankees have struggled as of late on the road.

All of that changed on Friday night with one swing of the black Louisville Slugger with a number thirteen on the nob.

Trailing the Baltimore Orioles in the ninth inning 3-1, Alex Rodriguez came to the plate.

Deuces were wild, as A-Rod sat with a 2-2 count, with two outs, and two runners on.

Rodriguez drilled a Koji Uehara pitch to left to give the Yankees the lead, where it would stay, as they went on to win 4-3.

Rodriguez drove in four runs on the night to give him 111 on the season and also connected with a solo home run in the second inning.  With his two home runs on the night, he now has 25 on the season—not bad considering the time he missed this summer.

A.J. Burnett was on his way to his 14th loss of the season before the ninth inning comeback, but he still pitched decently, only making a few mistakes.

David Robertson pitched a scoreless eight to pick up the win and move to 4-4 on the season.

Mariano Rivera locked down a three-up, three-down ninth to earn his 31st save of the season.

The Yankees needed a lift and a big win, as time is running out in the 2010 regular season.

The Los Angeles Angels defeated the Tampa Bay Rays to help the Yankees reclaim first place in the AL East standings.

Also, the Boston Red Sox lost a tough one at home against the Toronto Blue Jays as they are barely breathing in the race to October.

The Yankees magic number (number of Yankee wins/Rays losses) to win the American League East is now at 16.  Next week, the division will most likely be decided as the Rays and Yankees play a make-or-break four game series at Yankees Stadium.

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Alex Rodriguez: Justice for A-Rod and His Baseball Career

It is no secret that Alex Rodriguez admitted to using performance enhancing drugs while with the Texas Rangers.

After he was outed by Sports Illustrated’s Selena Roberts, he confessed.

I am one of the few people that believe that steroids do not help you center a baseball and hit home runs, but what it does do is help your recovery time and give you more energy throughout the season.

So, are the home runs tainted?  Yes, some of them are.

The saddest part about all of this is that Alex never needed to do this to begin with.

As a young boy playing alongside Doug Mientkiewicz at Westminster Private School, with a No. 3 on the back of his jersey, he had talent from the start.

According to Rodriguez, it was the pressure of the big-time contracts which made him want to be more healthy and not get hurt, and that caused his use of drugs in the first place.

We’ll never really know how special Alex Rodriguez’s career could of been if he had never cheated.

However, one must think, how many people would be accusing him of cheating right now and not care about his achievements if 2009’s admission never happened?

I think a lot of this comes down to personal feelings towards Rodriguez.

If you don’t like the guy, and you don’t like the Yankees, that’s fine.  But, you can’t sit there and hold it against his career numbers.

I understand the fact that you think his numbers are tainted because he cheated, but don’t banish him from the record books for the wrong reasons.

I am sure we will have this conversation when David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez are near the end of their careers.  At least Rodriguez admitted to getting his hand caught in the cookie jar.  Other players have denied and turned the other cheek.

What it boils down to is that Rodriguez is 162 home runs away from tying Barry Bonds for the all-time home runs record.  That is a fact.  It is a shame it isn’t happening on better terms.

My take is, Rodriguez’s career can still be defined by what he does from 2009 and forward, and he can still sneak into the Hall of Fame.

A few more rings and playoff performances like he had last year can help his cause.

Go ahead, tell me Rodriguez will never hit like that in the postseason again.  After all, you were probably the same one who said he wouldn’t ever hit in the postseason in the first place. 

I see a lot of writers quick to judge Rodriguez, but I also see a lot of writers quick to change the subject when they are wrong.

With me, I think Rodriguez is different when we talk steroid-era players.

It is out there, admitted, and it is done with.  Now, he is still playing, has some good years left, and deserves a second chance.

As upset towards him as I was, I will be my own judge and jury when it comes to A-Rod.  As long as he performs well when it counts and has a good final five years of his career, he will be in a better place in my book.

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Only Alex: The Glamourus Path To 600

There is that third basemen for the New York Yankees who has a strange way of doing things.

Alex Rodriguez is sitting at 599 home runs on his career.

A-Rod will only be the seventh player in history to enter the realm of 600 or more career home runs.

On top of that, he will become the youngest to hit 600 home runs, at the age of 34. 

On July 27, A-Rod will celebrate his 35th birthday.

Let’s look back on a few key moments in the last eight years of the baseball career of Alex Rodriguez:

Last Year With Rangers:  In his last year with the Texas Rangers, A-Rod led the AL in home runs, runs scored and slugging percentage which led to his first career MVP trophy.

Following that season, Rodriguez was traded to the New York Yankees. The Boston Red Sox nearly had him, but the MLBPA vetoed the trade due to voluntary reduction to Rodriguez’s salary.

The Yankees nabbed him, sending second basemen Alfonso Soriano to Texas, along with first basemen Joaquin Arias.

Upon his arrival in New York, the place he was actually born, Rodriguez had to switch positions and jersey numbers.  The number three belonged to The Great Bambino, and shortstop belonged to the Yankees captain, Derek Jeter.

MVP Seasons with Yankees: Following his first MVP award with Texas in 2003, in 2005 and 2007, Rodriguez won his second and third MVP awards in his career.

400 Home Run Club: On June 8, 2005 in Milwaukee in an interleague game with the Brewers, Rodriguez had a multi-home run game.  Hitting number 399 and 400 in the same game.  The Milwaukee crowd gave him a nice standing ovation following his milestone home run in the eight inning.

Mr April: In the 2007 season, Rodriguez hit 14 home runs in 18 games in the month of April, which is a tie for the Major League record for that month.

500 Home Run Club: On August 4th, 2007 at Yankee Stadium against the Kansas City Royals, Rodriguez hit his 500th career home run off of left handed pitcher Kyle Davies.  This made Alex the youngest player ever to reach 500 homers (32 years, 8 days).

Opt Out Controversy/New Yankees Contract: At the end of the 2007 season, A-Rod opted out of his contract with the New York Yankees.  The problem is, it was announced just before the Boston Red Sox won the World Series on live TV.  He was criticized for the timing of the announcement, which was during the eighth inning of game four of the World Series.

Realizing that the situation wasn’t handled well, Rodriguez bypassed his agent Scott Boras and talked with the Yankees brass personally.  He said he wanted to stay and was given a new contract, a 10-year, $275 million deal.  The contract also includes incentives for breaking home run milestones in a Yankees uniform.

Testing Instant Replay: 2008 was rather quiet for Rodriguez.  However, on September 3, in a game against the Tampa Bay Rays, he hit his 549th home run of his career. The opposing manager objected that the ball was foul, and for the first time in MLB history, instant replay (a process officially introduced a few days earlier) was used to review the play and uphold the umpires’ ruling.

Steroid Admission: The gray area on Rodriguez’s career will forever be his admission to the use of performance enhancing drugs during his 2003 season with the Texas Rangers.

Prior to the 2009 season, Rodriguez was reported by Selena Roberts of Sports Illustrated for testing positive for performance enhancing drugs.  Until this report, Rodriguez denied use of steroids.  It was after this Sports Illustrated article that Rodriguez had a press conference before Spring Training and came clean. 

That day, referring to his steroid use, Rodriguez said, “I was young, I was stupid, I was naïve. And I wanted to prove to everyone that I was worth being one of the greatest players of all time. I did take a banned substance. And for that, I am very sorry and deeply regretful.”

Hip Surgery/Return: Before the 2009 season, Rodriguez opted to undergo an arthroscopic procedure on his hip, with a recovery period of six to nine weeks, instead of the usual three to four months.

Due to this injury, Rodriguez missed the World Baseball Classic.  Unlike the first WBC in 2005, Rodriguez was going to play for Dominican Republic, rather then Team USA.

In his first game back on May 8 against the Baltimore Orioles, Rodriguez smashed a three-run home run on the first pitch he saw.  The Yankees struggled during Rodriguez’s absence, going 13-15.  A-Rod’s return gave an instant impact to the team.

Ending 2009 In Fashion:  In the final game of the 2009 regular season, a shortened year for Rodriguez due to his hip injury, he came up big. Rodriguez hit two home runs in the sixth inning that drove in seven runs, setting an American League record for most RBIs by a batter in a single inning, and giving him his 12th consecutive season, 13 overall, of reaching 30 home runs and 100 RBIs, breaking a tie with Manny Ramirez, Jimmie Foxx, and Babe Ruth for most 30/100 seasons in MLB history.

Playoff Monkey No More:  2009 saw Alex Rodriguez get the proverbial playoff monkey off of his back.

Being criticized in the past for not being clutch, A-Rod was clutch and even more during this post season.

Dating back to Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS against the Boston Red Sox, Rodriguez had come to bat with 38 runners on base over a span of 61 postseason at-bats. He stranded every one of them, going 0-for-29 with runners on base.

But in the first game of the 2009 ALDS, against the Minnesota Twins, A-Rod had 2 RBI singles, both coming with two outs, and in Game 2, hit an RBI single in the 6th, and hit a game-tying homer off closer Joe Nathan in the bottom of the ninth inning. Game 3 of the ALDS, he hit a game-tying home run.

In the ALCS against the Los Angeles Angels, Rodriguez hit his third game-tying HR of the post season in Game 2 in the bottom of the 11th against Angel closer Brian Fuentes.  For the series, he batted 9-21 (.429) with three home runs and six runs batted in.

Entering his first ever World Series, Rodriguez hit what appeared to be a double off a camera perched atop the outfield wall in Game 3 on Halloween night, but after protest by Yankee manager Joe Girardi, was reviewed and ruled a home run. Rodriguez’s postseason success continued in Game 4 of the World Series, as he drove in the go-ahead run with two outs in the 9th inning off of Phillies closer Brad Lidge.

The Yankees went on to win their 27th World Series Championship during Game Six at Yankee Stadium, Rodriguez’s first championship.

This weekend, the Yankees are going up against the Kansas City Royals, the same team he hit his 500th career home run off of.  More ironic, Kyle Davies, the pitcher who surrendered Rodriguez’s 500th homer, is the scheduled starting pitcher for Saturday’s game.

Knowing Alex Rodriguez, he will hit 600 off of Kyle Davies as well.

If he doesn’t wrap up the milestone home run before Sunday at Yankee Stadium, maybe he will take his show on the road to Cleveland and hit number 600 on his birthday (July 27) in typical A-Rod fashion.

Love him or hate him, and most hate him, Alex Rodriguez is one of the most important figures in baseball history.  If it isn’t his stats, it is how interesting and entertaining he can be without even meaning to.

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Yankees Hope To Dig the Red Sox a Bigger Hole With a Win

After last night’s thrilling comeback victory by the New York Yankees (25-13), CC Sabathia (4-2, 3.71 ERA) looks to finish off the Boston Red Sox (19-20) for the time being.

Going into Tuesday night, the Red Sox are already eight-and-a-half games out of first place in the American League East.

However, the Yankees aren’t actually the leader of the East at the moment. The red hot Tampa Bay Rays (27-11) are two games ahead of the Bronx Bombers.

Still, with a victory tonight, the Yankees would move to 6-2 on the season against the Red Sox, and don’t play them again until August 6 at Yankee Stadium.

With the start to the season that the Red Sox have had, I think it is crucial that they get a victory here and move back to .500 on the season, and give them some confidence going forward.

They will need Josh Beckett (1-1, 7.46 ERA) to pitch like an ace to do so. 

In a rematch from opening day, Beckett and Sabathia look to both have better performances as they yielded five earned runs each in early exits for their respective clubs.

It is worth noting that Josh Beckett last faced the Yankees at Fenway Park on May 7, and was torched for nine earned runs in five innings of work, and received the loss. This was also the last time Beckett has pitched until tonight.

Meanwhile, CC Sabathia pitched somewhat better on May 8 against the Red Sox.

However, he received a no-decision due to a rain delay with one strike remaining in the count on the current batter to make it an official game, and to pitch the minimum of five innings to receive a victory.

Unfortunately for CC Sabathia and the red hot Yankees, mother nature may be a factor tonight as rain is in the forecast for most of the evening.

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