Friday, May 1, 2015

Yankees seek revenge versus Red Sox

The New York Yankees finished the month of April in first place, something no one saw coming after losing two of three games to the Boston Red Sox in the season’s first week. The Yankees left New York after the series with a 2-4 record looking like a team with many issues, not one which would be atop the American League East as the calendar turned to May.

The Yankees turned things around and have won four straight series with the club going 10-3 over that time period. The Red Sox (12-10 overall) have lost two of their last three series, going 4-5 and have some issues of their own to overcome.

This weekend’s series also marks the beginning of 14 straight games against AL East opponents for the Yankees. While it is only the second month of the season, a poor performance in this stretch could be detrimental to the club.

The Yankees are now without Masahiro Tanaka, so the rest of the rotation will need to step up and it is the middle part of the starting five who get the call against the Red Sox. This will not be an easy task in Boston, but these guys will have to turn the corner at some point if the Yankees expect to remain in contention this season.

Probable starters

5/1/15 – CC Sabathia (0-4, 5.96 ERA) vs. Justin Masterson (2-0, 5.16 ERA)
5/2/15 – Nathan Eovaldi (1-0, 4.15 ERA) vs. Wade Miley (1-2, 8.62 ERA)
5/3/15 – Adam Warren (1-1, 4.35 ERA) vs. Joe Kelley (1-0, 4.94 ERA)

What to expect

The series lines up to have a good deal of scoring. Not one of the starting pitchers has an ERA below 4.00 and each offense has been quite good thus far. The Yankees rank sixth in Major League Baseball with 109 runs scored and are tied for third in the league in home runs (29). The Red Sox have scored the third most runs in baseball (113). Those two trends together could mean runs in bunches for both teams.

If the Yankees can manage to carry leads into the late innings, they’ll have a better shot of nailing down games than the Red Sox, whose relievers are simply not clicking as a unit (collective 4.03 ERA). The Yankees’ bullpen (1.75 ERA, .159 BAA and 93 K in 82.1 IP) has been lights out for much of the year despite getting to the point of being overworked.

So for the Yankees to come away with another series win, it's a matter of the rotation not letting things get out of hand, the offense continuing to score runs and the bullpen to remain at their best.

Christopher Carelli is a freelance baseball writer. Besides his work here, Christopher is a featured Yankees writer for He is also a correspondent for FantasyPros, where he writes a weekly column covering the closer/bullpen situations around Major League Baseball. His baseball commentary has also been published on Yahoo Sports and linked multiple times on MLB Trade Rumors’ Baseball Blogs Weigh In. He is a member of the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America, the Baseball Bloggers Alliance and the BYB Hub.