The Boston Red Sox have now won four straight games. The New York Yankees on the other hand have now lost 8 of their last ten games. While the Sox are only 6-4 during that time, in the span of a week and a half, they have trimmed four games from their deficit to New York, who - after dropping two of three to the Rays - now trail the Rays in the AL East by one-half game.
Although it's quite unlikely, the Red Sox (or Yankees, depending on how you look at it) have now put themselves in a position where they mathematically control their own destiny. Their play and their play alone will now determine whether they reach the postseason.
Both the Yankees and the Red Sox have three remaining games against both the Orioles and Blue Jays. The Red Sox have four remaining games against a White Sox who swept them at Fenway earlier this month in a series that appeared to be devastating to Boston's chances. However, that was when Chicago was still in the thick of things after acquiring Manny Ramirez. Since the Sox vs. Sox series, the White guys have dropped like a rock in the standings and are now eight games behind the Twins with only twenty games left to play and it appears that they now may be eliminated by the time the two different color Sox once again square off
The Yankees, on the other hand, have four remaining contests against a Rays. The first place Rays, a team that repeated has stated that they are focused on winning the division rather than settle for the Wild Card. It apparently means enough to the young Rays that manager Joe Maddon announced on Wednesday that he was juggling his rotation to ensure that ace David Price (rather than struggling starter Jeff Niemann) will take the mound in Yankee Stadium next week.
If nothing else, this scenario adds some spice to an otherwise anticlimactic American League playoff race as just a few days ago the playoff contenders being the Texas Rangers, Minnesota Twins, Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees appeared to be all but written in stone.
So Red Sox Nation, hold onto your hats because it's now a fight for your life as your team has been temporarily given clemency by your ultimate rivals. 'Getcho Popcorn Ready' as this one could get interesting if the Yankees don't snap out of this funk soon. - David Ross
David, a paraplegic since a 1986 car accident, has been providing volunteer sports coverage for his local community paper in Mission, KS for over 20 years.
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