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Yankees Regain Status as Title Contenders

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The New York Yankees are currently the hottest team in baseball with an unmatched six-game winning streak. This sudden outburst of athletic excellence isn’t an unlikely occurrence for the storied franchise, but before Tuesday’s game, their season was not up to par for a team that has won 27 World Series championships.

On Thursday, September 8th, the Bronx Bombers had lost six in a row and stood at the precipice of their first losing season in 25 years. The situation was considered so dire that general manager Brian Cashman personally addressed the team, saying, “We’re used to better baseball than this.” 

Since then, the Yankees have rebounded, culminating in a 20-6 blowout over the Toronto Blue Jays on September 15th. The 20 runs were the most the Yankees have scored all season, and indeed any Yankee fan would be hard pressed to remember a time in recent memory when the Bronx Bombers demonstrated this type of batting prowess. 

The Yankees’ scoring began by capitalizing on poor fielding. Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Derek Fisher, a hitter who occupied the ninth spot in the lineup, committed an error in the second inning on a play that should’ve been an easy out.

Following that, the Yankees scored six runs in the second inning, including back-to-back home runs by Aaron Hicks and Luke Voit. After the inning concluded, the Yankees had a 7-1 lead, and the game seemed largely out of reach for the Blue Jays. 

As though they were making a statement to the second-place Blue Jays, the Yankees continued to pour it on. In the third inning, they scored four more runs, which were largely the result of two consecutive hits-by-pitch. Then, in the fourth, the lead increased when Gary Sanchez displayed the home run power that has earned him several Silver Slugger Awards. 

The Yankees’ good fortune extended to the pitching mound, as well. 21-year-old starting pitcher Deivi Garcia, who is in a battle for the second starting rotation spot, recorded a quality start, surrendering only three runs over seven innings. 

Each player contributed to the Yankees’ blowout, but there were several players that had season-high performances. Luke Voit, a serious MVP candidate, delivered two home runs and five RBIs for the team.

The overachieving Gio Urshela upped his batting average to .290 by going three for four. Clint Frazier secured a place on the Yankees’ starting lineup by going 2 for 3 with a two-run home run. And D.J. LeMahieu, who will likely request a salary increase during negotiations in the offseason, went 4 for 6 to maintain his .363 batting average.

The Yankees’ lineup has proven itself as a top-tier offense heading into the postseason. As is the case with every year, the only questionable aspect of the team is their starting pitching. Whoever takes the mound as the starting pitcher in October, they will not have to concern themselves with run support from their batters. A solid offensive game is all but guaranteed. 

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