Phil Hughes doesn't think extra rest has any effect his ability to perform; he says it's all about making pitching:
"It was probably just coincidental," Hughes said. "I try not to put too much stock into extra rest or things like that. The fact I pitched better after the second time I was skipped than the first time I would say was just a matter of making better pitches and not necessarily the rest having affected me."
One Highlanders team and four Yankee teams have lost the division after being in first place in mid-September:
1920 and 1924 during the Babe Ruth era, 1948 with Joe DiMaggio and 1974 with Thurman Munson and Bobby Murcer.
When the Yankees dropped games 3 and 4 to Tampa, I conceded the division. The Wild Card has as good a chance as any division winner to win it all.
Chris Jaffe put together an article looking at the All-Time Boomerang Team of players who started and ended their careers the same place, despite changing teams in the middle. Babe Ruth, Yogi Berra, and Andy Pettitte all made the team. If Nick Johnson retires, he'd make it too!