The Yankees managed to win the previous two games against the Houston Astros. It was a good end to the month of April and a good beginning to the month of May. Now that April is out of the way we can stop saying "It's only April" when talking about what the Yankees do or do not do correctly. It's time for the "It's only May" quote to come a rolling along. Seriously though, the Yankees are over the hill but we've still got a long way to go. Since the past couple of days have spent recapping April's showers, let us take a look at May's flowers.
Today there will be no Yankee baseball as they prepare for a three game weekend series against the Oakland Athletics. The A's come into town sporting a 16-13 record, continuing the late season success they had last year in the month of April. We are currently scheduled to face A.J. Griffin, our old friend Bartolo Colon, and finally Dan Straily. The Yankees will take a much needed day off on Monday before they begin a sixteen game span with no days off, in which they will play seventeen games.
The Yankees start off the trip in Denver to face Dinger and the Colorado Rockies for the first time and last time this season. Just for a hoot I decided to check the ten day forecast in Denver for next week. Tuesday and Wednesday we have a chances of rain. Isn't it fun to think about future off days being possible out of the way double headers cause we never face a team again during the year? I suppose it's better than a chance of snow. Next on our pinstriped road trip, the Yankees head to Kauffman Stadium for a three game series against the somewhat hopeful Kansas City Royals.
The Yankees would've had a day off the following Monday but May 13th was the decided day for the Yankees and Indians to play a one day double header in Cleveland to make up the two rained out games earlier this year. Fun times. The Bombers, which we can shockingly still call them that even with this lineup, then head back to the Bronx for a six game homestand against the Mariners and Blue Jays before flying to Baltimore for a three game series against the Orioles. With the end to that sixteen game stint, the Yanks get a much needed day off before starting a seventeen game run without a day off. Yay.
The journey starts in Tropicana Field against the Rays for three games, then back to my home borough of Queens to face the Mets for two games. The Yankees then drive back over the Triboro Bridge, which I refuse to call the RFK because Triboro makes so much more sense, for another two games against the Mets. Finally the month ends with the Boston Red Sox coming back to Yankee Stadium, which will take us into June. With that missing off day on May 13th, it's going to be a long month.
May is still early in the year and anything is possible. However, it is when a lot of us start to look at what this team can really do. Was April just a fluke? Can this makeshift lineup really hold up? One could be troubled by the fact that the Yankees have won a lot of close games so far. One could also be relieved that the Yankees have had a lot of come back victories, not to mention how they've continued to hit home runs and have yet to lose when they score first. It's all perspective, but I think it's a time for positive thoughts. Or thoughts of Junior's Cheesecake.
Then comes the matter of injuries. Even with the likes of Jayson Nix being our (shudder) every day third baseman for some time now, the Yankees just acquired Chris Nelson from the Rockies and will eventually be getting Kevin Youkilis back. Then comes the Curtis Granderson issue. The Grandy Man is supposedly coming back to us in the middle of the month. This will make the likes of Ben Francisco somewhat pointless on the team. Even more than he already seems if you can believe that. Getting Youk and Granderson back will help the Yankees sure up their bench and pinch hitting situation a bit. Overbay can get some time off. The outfield defense will fluctuate a bit. One Binder to rule us all, and such.
All in all things are looking promising for the Yankees. They've managed to get seven games over .500 going into the month after all the injuries and pitching concerns and just about everything. Getting some of their weapons back will only help improve their chances. May is not going to be a cake walk though. The first half of the month will be facing teams over .500 and playing good baseball right now. As the Astros proved on Monday, anything is possible.
Still there is no reason not to be confident heading into the month. The starting pitching has managed to keep us in games. The primary bullpen of Joba Chamberlain, David Robertson, and of course the legendary Mariano Rivera have held the line. And the offense is still winning the wrong way with dingers. Great start to the year, but the Yankees still have a long way to go. Just hope they don't have to sacrifice any more off days along the way.