While the Yankees’ recent run of 15 wins in 16 games isn’t exactly record-setting, it’s also nothing to be scoffed at. Something like that isn’t exactly a yearly occurrence. Last year’s Yankees were pretty good, and the closest they came to something like that was winning 9 of 10 in April.
While it may not go down in any record books, where does this recent run stack up against some other notable ones from Yankees’ history? Let’s start by comparing it to the longest winning streak in Yankees’ history.
From June 29th to July 17th in 1947, the Yankees won 19 games in a row. One other streak has reached 18, but that’s as close as any other Yankees team has gotten. The longest in recent times has been a 10-game streak, which has happened a couple times, most recently in 2012. During that run in 1947, the Yankees added seven games worth of breathing room to their lead in the AL over that time and never looked back.
It’s hard to say this current run is better than the longest winning streak in team history. In retrospect, though, a decent chunk of the games were against teams near the bottom of the AL. They did win five games against eventual fourth-placed Cleveland, but they already had a giant lead over them heading into the series.
If you’re looking for the most dominant run in team history, it’s hard to top one from 1939. From August 13th to August 28th, the Yankees went 15-1. It included seven games of 10 or more runs (three of 16+), four double-digit run wins, and was kicked off by a 21-0 win against the Philadelphia Athletics. This run includes three doubleheaders, of which they won five games.
They averaged 9.69 runs over those 16 games, and allowed an average of just 2.5. Even their one loss was just by one run, and came after a bottom of the ninth rally where they scored two runs and brought the winning run to the plate. If you add in the three games prior to August 13th, it includes another loss, but then two more wins, including an 18-4 victory.
The next notable thing we’ll look up is ground gained. On May 9, 1926, the Yankees lost a game to the Tigers and were 0.5 games back of first in the AL. They proceeded to win the next 16 games, and ended the run 8.5 games up. An off day and a loss immediately knocked that back down to six games, but the Yankees never trailed in the pennant race again. They made up nine games in about 16 days.
During this current run, the Yankees went from 6.5 down to just one back heading into Monday. What the Yankees have done to cut into the race after the Red Sox’ hot start is impressive, but it’s not quite historic.
The one area where an argument can be made for this being the best run is in the subjective area of pure fun and excitement. In this 16-game stretch, the Yankees have had three walk-off wins, and two other road wins where they scored go ahead runs in the top-half of the final inning. They’ve won two games by more than 10 runs, and won three of four in the home stadium of the team that’s knocked them out of their last two playoff appearances. Oh, and an extremely hyped rookie — Gleyber Torres, in case you’ve been in a coma — has come up, made his debut, played well, and even hit a walk-off home run.
Maybe this recent run hasn’t been the best of all time, but it’s hard to find any in team history that have been more fun.
All historical data is courtesy of Baseball Reference.