Fortunately, the Yankees finished off a three-game sweep of the terrible Chicago White Sox yesterday. Unfortunately, that means nothing with the next seven games against the Red Sox (who are going to be pumped following a 20-4 victory last night) and the Orioles. Incredibly, the Yankees won the last two games of the three-game set against the White Sox with very mediocre pitching.
On Tuesday, Hiroki Kuroda continued his struggles, giving up four runs. This is the fourth consecutive outing he has let up at least four runs. If the Yankees want to make the playoffs, Kuroda can not pitch like this. Giving up four runs to the White Sox is not an encouraging sign, especially when he is slated to pitch the finale of the four-game series with the Red Sox.
The Yankee offense has stepped up recently, and it needs to keep that up, especially against the Red Sox, who have scored more runs than any other team in baseball. They have an incredibly hot pitcher on the mound for two of the four games (Jon Lester and Jake Peavy). The offense and pitching both need to bring their A-game against the Red Sox.
Losing either of these two upcoming series could have serious consequences. If the Yankees don't win the series against the Red Sox, they might as well forget about the division race with only three remaining matchups left. If the Yankees lose their series against the Orioles, that would also be bad because more likely than not the Orioles would pass them in the Wild Card.
Just because we just swept doesn't mean there shouldn't be a sense of urgency in the clubhouse.