With the Yankees' playoff record unfortunately frozen in time for a season until they reach the playoffs again, now is as good a time as any to look back on their head-to-head record against each of the 29 other MLB teams. In total, they have gone 223-150-1 in the playoffs, a .596 winning percentage that would translate to 96 wins in a 162-game schedule. Given that record, it should not be so surprising that they've won 27 World Series titles and 40 American League pennants in their 51 playoff appearances.
There are only six teams that the Yankees have never faced in the playoffs: the White Sox, Rockies, Astros, Rays, Blue Jays, and Nationals. The Rockies' and Astros' lone pennants occurred in 2005 and 2007, when the Yankees lost in the ALDS, and the Nationals (previously the Montreal Expos) have never won the pennant. Being in the same division as the Yankees throughout their history, the Blue Jays could never face the Yankees in the playoffs until the Wild Card era began in 1995, and they haven't made the playoffs since '93. The Rays only became good five years ago; they have only made the playoffs at the same time as the Yankees twice (in 2010, when they lost to the Rangers in the ALDS to blow a potential ALCS matchup, and in 2011, when both teams lost in the ALDS).
The lack of a White Sox matchup throughout the Yankees' history is the most surprising of the six teams since they've always been in a separate division than the Yankees, but they have also only made the playoffs five times since divisional play began in 1969. The Yankees missed the playoffs in three of those years, and in the two where an ALCS matchup was possible given one team's ALDS victory, the 2000 White Sox were swept by the Mariners in their division series, and the 2005 Yankees lost to the Angels in their division series. Some year, they will get it right.
Without further ado, here is the list of head-to-head matchups.
|Team||Games||W||L||Pct.||Most Memorable Victory|
|Arizona Diamondbacks||7||3||4||0.429||2001 WS G4: Against closer Kim, Tino HR ties in 9th and Jeter HR walks off in 10th|
|Atlanta/Milwaukee Braves||24||15||9||0.625||1996 WS G4: Leyritz HR ties in 8th; Yanks win in 10 to tie series|
|Baltimore Orioles||10||7||3||0.700||1996 ALCS G1: Fan-aided Jeter HR ties in 8th; Bernie HR wins it in 10th|
|Boston Red Sox||19||11||8||0.579||2003 ALCS G7: 3-run rally off Pedro ties in 8th; Boone HR ends series in 11th|
|Chicago Cubs||8||8||0||1.000||1932 WS G3: Ruth supposedly calls shot at Wrigley Field in 7-5 win|
|Chicago White Sox||0||0||0||N/A||N/A|
|Cincinnati Reds||13||8||5||0.615||1939 WS G4: Catcher Lombardi's "snooze" leads to 3-run 10th; Reds swept|
|Cleveland Indians||15||7||8||0.467||1998 ALCS G4: Rookie "El Duque" throws 7 scoreless; 114-win Yanks tie series|
|Detroit Tigers||13||3||10||0.231||2011 ALDS G1: Rain-interrupted game resumes day late; Cano slams in 9-3 win|
|Kansas City Royals||14||9||5||0.643||1976 ALCS G5: Chambliss walk-off HR wins series as home crowd storms field|
|Los Angeles/Anaheim Angels||14||7||7||0.500||2009 ALCS G2: A-Rod HR ties in 11th; Yanks win in 13 to take 2-0 series lead|
|Los Angeles/Brooklyn Dodgers||66||37||29||0.561||1956 WS G5: Larsen hurls the only postseason perfect game in MLB history|
|Miami/Florida Marlins||6||2||4||0.333||2003 WS G2: Pettitte nearly shuts out Marlins as Yanks tie World Series|
|Milwaukee Brewers||5||3||2||0.600||1981 ALDS G5: Yanks avoid blowing 2-0 series lead with 7-3 win in decisive game|
|Minnesota Twins||14||12||2||0.857||2009 ALDS G2: A-Rod HR ties in 9th and Teixeira HR wins in 10th|
|New York Mets||5||4||1||0.800||2000 WS G5: Yanks finish off Mets at Shea thanks to Sojo's 9th inning 2-run single|
|Oakland A's||13||9||4||0.692||2001 ALDS G3: 1-0 victory staves off sweep as Jeter's "flip play" preserves shutout|
|Philadelphia Phillies||10||8||2||0.800||2009 WS G6: Series MVP Matsui homers and drives in 6 as Yanks clinch series|
|Pittsburgh Pirates||11||7||4||0.636||1927 WS G4: Miljus wild pitch brings Combs home with series-ending run|
|San Diego Padres||4||4||0||1.000||1998 WS G1: Knoblauch 3-run HR and Tino slam in 7th give Yanks 9-5 lead|
|San Francisco/New York Giants||43||23||19||0.535||1962 WS G7: Tense 1-0 game ends on McCovey's bases-loaded-lineout in 9th|
|Seattle Mariners||16||10||6||0.625||2001 ALCS G4: Bernie HR ties in 8th; rookie Soriano HR walks off in 9th|
|St. Louis Cardinals||28||15||13||0.536||1964 WS G3: Mantle hits walk-off HR off Schulz; Yanks take 2-1 series lead|
|Tampa Bay Rays||0||0||0||N/A||N/A|
|Texas Rangers||16||11||5||0.688||1996 ALDS G2: Fielder single ties in 8th; Yanks walk off on error in 12th to tie series|
|Toronto Blue Jays||0||0||0||N/A||N/A|
I arbitrarily determined the most memorable victory, but I'm certain there wouldn't be much contest for most of them. The near-misses with the 2001 World Series Game 5 against the Diamondbacks, 2012 ALDS Game 3 against the Orioles, 1977 World Series Game 6 against the Dodgers, 2000 World Series Game 1 against the Mets, 2009 World Series Game 4 against the Phillies, 1998 World Series Game 3 against the Padres, and the 1995 ALDS Game 2 against the Mariners. If you think any others could have made the list, sound off in the comments.
Here's to many more years of Yankee playoff success in 2014 and beyond.