Down 7-3 in the sixth inning on Sunday night against the American League East leading Boston Red Sox, things look grim for the New York Yankees.
So far in the first half of the season, it has been nothing but setbacks, disappointments and tons on injuries that have plagued the Yankees. It seem as things were going to be more of the same to begin the second half of the season but after taking a 5-2 victory on Saturday to spark some hope, the Yankees reverted back to the struggles falling behind 7-3 by the sixth inning on Sunday.
Two days after learning that Derek Jeter will be heading back to the disable list with a Grade 1 quadricep strain, the Yankees woke up to learn that Alex Rodriguez will be sidelined for a little while longer with the same injury. Things look to go south versus the Red Sox but something happened. The Yankees remembered they were the Yankees and showed some Pinstripe pride as they battled back to go down with a fight.
The Yankees roared back on Sunday night to tie things at 7-7 after scoring two runs in the sixth inning on RBI singles by Brett Gardner and Robinson Cano and two more runs in the seventh inning on an RBI single by catcher Chris Stewart and a run scoring groundout by third baseman Luis Cruz.
The Red Sox eventually took the game on a walk-off home run from Mike Napoli in the 11th inning, but the Yankees showed that they will not go down this season without a fight and will not give up that AL East crown to the rival Red Sox without a fight. Despite all the injuries and setbacks, the Yankees showed they can hold their own versus the best team in baseball at the moment.
The Yankees dropped back to seven games behind the Red Sox and in fourth place behind the Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles, but are six games over .500 and in any other division that would mean fighting for first place. It has been a miracle thus far that the Yankees are where they are and have set themselves very nicely as some of the stars will be joining them sometime soon off the DL.
All credit goes to all the players that have come up big to fill in for the stars as Vernon Wells, Eduardo Nunez, Travis Hafner, Lyle Overbay, Stewart and Cruz have been able to keep the Yankees afloat as Kevin Youkilis, Curtis Granderson, Jeter and Rodriguez find a way to come back and Mark Teixeira having to undergo season-ending surgery.
With the starters coming back, the Yankees are poised to make a run down the stretch to catch the Red Sox and make the playoffs. Yes, that is a tall task to ask these players to comeback from major injuries and be effective, but even at a diminish level, these players still pose a greater threat in the lineup then their replacements at the moment.
Despite their best efforts, the replacements have just been mediocre at the plate with no player batting over .255 this season other than Cano, Gardeners and Ichiro Suzuki. Cano has been carrying the load on the offensive side as he awaits the arrival of the Bronx Bombers. Can is hitting .306 with 21 home runs and 69 RBI and an OBP of .389 a slugging percentage of .530.
So while the Yankees wait, Cano will have to continue to carry the load and hope they don’t fall back so far down that they have a chance to roar back as they did on this Sunday night. Roar back through all the adversity they have face as they almost did against the Red Sox.