The New York Yankees One loss away from coming home for the winter. Saturday night, the Yankees blew a ninth inning lead 5-3 in a 6-5 loss to the Cleveland Guardians in Game 3 of the ALDS. Cleveland leads the best series 2-1. win one and guardians will take on Houston Astros in ALCS.
“Go on, it stings now and it’s rough,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said, when asked how you handled a loss like Game Three. “You know, you’re frustrated because you’re so close to the end there, but we’ve come to turn the page…we got gerrit [Cole] Going [Sunday]. We expect to get out here and win.”
The Yankees are certainly able to come back from a 2-1 deficit – six years ago they erased an ALDS 2-0 deficit against Cleveland – although it won’t be easy, and they will need a few things to fall into place to make it a reality. Here are five things that need to happen to rock the ALDS comeback.
1. Get a dominant start from Cool
This almost goes without saying. Gerrit Cole will start Game 4 and, thanks to ALDS’s unusual schedule, will be at regular rest after last Tuesday’s Game 1 outing. Cole was very good in Game 1 and frequent performances will be essential in Game 4. The Yankees need Cole to keep guards in check and also to chew roles because the Bulls are taxed and shortened by injury..
2. Judge builds on game 3
Aaron Judge looked bad as far as a hitter could look in games 1 and 2.then in Game 3, he hit a towering 449-foot homer into the center field that tied the contest at two in the third inning.
The judge hit another ball into the caution lane later in the game. Needless to say, the Yankees need a judge to continue playing in baseball and carry his team as he did during his regular season MVP. There were times during the summer when the New York team was so decimated by injuries that the judge was one army dragging his team to victory. They need that guy again.
Also, the Yankees desperately need Giancarlo Stanton (1 vs 9 at ALDS), Gleyber Torres (2 vs 12), and a few others to get up on the board. Rookie Oswaldo Cabrera went to 0 for 8 with five hits in games 1 and 2 before coming out with a solid double Homer in game 3. The backstop definitely needs to go up too.
3. Someone else picks up large sums of money
The Yankees used Jonathan Loisiga and lefties Andy Peralta in all three games in the series, including Peralta’s extended seven-stroke outing in Game Three. 4, although both will be performing for the third day in a row, which could put them both at risk. You may not be at the optimum level of effectiveness you should need to take either hill.
In this case, the Yankees need someone else – preferably one Somebody Another – to get out of the bulls and take on important risks at some point. An offense can help by giving the staff some breathing room, but you can’t expect a torrent of training in the post-season. Here is the ALDS Bullpen in New York:
Castro, Germain, and Lotge have yet to participate in the series – Castro and Lotge haven’t even recovered – and Taillon only faced three players in Game Two. He was in the Circle of Confidence™, although he allowed two runs in that turn and the Yankees might not want to throw him back into the fire if they can help him.
The point is, Loáisiga and Peralta can’t do all the heavy lifting from the bulls the rest of the series. Whether he likes Boone or not, he’s going to have to ask someone else for big bucks at some point. Maybe it’s Taeyeon, maybe Castro, maybe someone else entirely. It should happen though. The Yankees have at least 18 rounds to cover if they plan to win this series.
4. Defense cleaning
The Yankees led all teams with 129 defensive passes saved during the regular season – Dodgers In second place with a score of 84 – their defensive proficiency .720 was the second best team after the .729 Dodgers. I’m not sure I can trust these exact numbers, but I buy that the Yankees are one of the best defensive teams in baseball during the regular season. They have revamped their list with this goal in mind.
This top-tier defense hasn’t been evident in ALDS yet. Josh Donaldson fouled a costly Jose Ramirez Lob double in the crucial 10th game in Game 2, and Isaiah Keener-Valiva fouled two players in Game Three. Extra matches are always bad news, but they are especially expensive in playoffs.
Cleveland puts the ball into play so much that playing proper defense is imperative. They will test you, and if you don’t play, they will take the extra rule and force the problem. The Yankees should clean up defensive mistakes and stop giving the Revolutionary Guard too many loopholes and extra bases.
5. Get lucky
It is better to be lucky than to be good, but it is better to be lucky And the Good. A bit of luck—a positive call, a lucky bounce, etc.—won’t hurt the Yankees at this point. They can use a break (or two or three) to turn the tide and start turning the string back in their favour. There is no shame in getting a little help along the way.
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