Yanks complete the season sweep of the Tribe, outscoring them 22-6 in the latest three game set.
Where does one begin when discussing the level of play the bombers have been exhibiting since the All-Star break? What I think is amazing, and probably has other teams fearing, is that they appear to be gaining momentum every game - no peak, no weakness.
For August, the Yanks are 9 -2. Since the break they are 24-8, 4 back in the Division, and tied with Seattle (Jeff Weaver is once again red hot for a playoff team) for the Wild Card lead.
The Yanks starting lineup has acceptable production at every position and at every spot in the batting order. Their bench, once a weakness, now quite possibly could be the strongest in baseball with Molina, Betemit, Duncan and Giambi ready to go at a moments notice - all of them seem to have the bigger goal in mind of winning, and playing for a winner than caring about daily playing time. How refreshing. Oh, I don't know, dare I say it? - how 1996 like.
Speaking of 1996, that's how long it has been since had "the formula". While it is to soon to tell if Chamberlain is truly ready or not, based on what we have seen, he is the two innings of shutdown relief to get to Rivera that we have all been waiting for. In my opinion, when Chamberlain is available (right now he gets two days of rest after every outing) and the Bombers have the lead by the end of the 6th, the game is over - period of story, it's over.
Very glad to see Giambi produce the instant he came back with the club. Cano is the best contact hitter in baseball. While everyone was sad to see Will Nieves go, it is clear that Jose Molina is a huge upgrade and am almost of the opinion that he is a defensive upgrade over Posada.
Next up: Three games with Baltimore. While the O's are not in contention for a playoff spot, they have been playing quality ball the last month and a half - it'll be a test to take 2 out of 3 from these guys, let's see if Wang can get back to being Wang and keep this momentum going.
Around the League: The two most nervous teams in the league right now have to be Boston and the New York Mets. Boston's "big" acquisition at the deadline of Eric Gagne appears to be a real dud as in 3 1/3 innings of work has given up 6 earned runs and has cost the Sox two victories that were in hand. The Mets are playing in the weakest division in baseball and have watched their division lead shrink to 3 games to the Braves and Phillies after losing two series in a row. Can Willie right the sinking ship? I don't think Queens will be satisfied with anything other than an appearance in the Fall Classic.. Other than yours truly (see post on 2/25/07), how many people do you know had the D-Backs winning West???