Yankees complete the 4 game sweep in Chicago. Yankee pitching was very good, or maybe the Chicago hitters were really that bad, as the Yankees did not issue a single walk in the series sweep. That's only happened twice before in MLB history 2005, and 1968, both times by Boston (that nugget courtesy of Buster Olney via Elias Sports). The Yankees sweep plus a couple of Boston losses and suddenly the Yankees and Red Sox are tied for first place in the AL East with a big 3 game set to begin tonight. Pitching matchups are scheduled to be: Colon/Lester, Sabathia/Lackey, and Garcia/Beckett. Lester has owned the Yankees (8-1 career record), I think Sabathia should have the edge in the second game, so the lead could be determined Sunday night. Red Sox have dominated the Yankees so far this season, 8-1. And that's even when the Red Sox were struggling in the beginning of the year. Hopefully the Yankee bats can stay hot and score some runs against a pretty good Boston rotation, and Yankee pitching can shut down a red hot Red Sox lineup being lead by Pedroia and Gonzalez.
AJ Burnett hasn't pitched well since June and should be skipped for a turn or two. The Yankees are spinning the positive outings by Hughes and Nova as "a good situation to be in, too much good starting pitching, we have 6 quality starters". Truth be told, this is a complete PR spin. AJ should be out of the rotation. The rotation should be the best 5 pitchers, and that is not AJ Burnett. Maybe we're banking too much on Hughes' last performance to say that "he's back", but at this point I will take Hughes over Burnett regardless. Or even call up someone from AAA S/WB, like Phelps or Warren.