With just a week left in the regular season, the AL Wild Card has yet to be decided. The New York Yankees have clinched the AL East, but they still have to fight for the best record against the Astros.
If they Yankees were to get the best American League record, they would be facing off against the winner of the Wild Card Game. Entering today (9/22), the Athletics have a two game lead over the Rays, who have a game lead over Cleveland. This puts the A’s and Rays in the Wild Card game with the A’s hosting.
But between all three teams, the Yankees should really want to face the Rays.
Five Home Games
As many people know, the Rays have trouble filling up their stadium and Yankees fans travel well. That combination means that games at Tropicana Field would feel like home games for the Yankees.
That stadium is a dump, but it is big knowing that Yankee fans would pack the stadium. Most years in the playoffs, the home team wins almost every game so it would be a way for the Yankees to go against the trend.
Through 17 games, the Yankee have owned the Rays this year with a 12-5 record. The two teams finish their season series with a two game set in Tampa in just a few days.
In comparison, the Yankees are a combined 5-8 against the Indians and the Athletics.
The Yankees would love to face the Rays in the first round of the playoffs, but can only do so if the Rays win the Wild Card game and the Yankees get the best record in the AL.