The New York Yankees swept the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park over the weekend and took two out of three in Toronto against the Blue Jays this week, thanks to their 6-2 victory in the series finale on Thursday after dropping Wednesdayâ€™s contest.
The red-hot Yankees have won eight of their last nine games and are now 91-68, two games ahead of the Red Sox and the surprising Seattle Mariners (both 89-70). A 5-1 record in their road trip against two teams fighting for the playoffs is not too shabby.
â€œI wish it was 6-0,â€ Yankeesâ€™ slugger Aaron Judge said to MLB.com after hitting two home runs in Thursdayâ€™s win. â€œWe went out there, we played some tough opponents in some tough meaningful games. It wasnâ€™t a postseason game, but it definitely had the atmosphere and the feel.â€
Toronto (88-71) is now one game out of the second spot after dropping two out of three with the Yankees, and will play the Baltimore Orioles, who took two from the Red Sox and complicated their chances.
The Yankeesâ€™ magic number is now at two
The Yankees will return home to face the AL East champions, the Tampa Bay Rays, for three crucial games. The Bombers did their homework in Boston and Toronto, and that has everyone in the organization feeling good.
â€œThis was as tough a trip as youâ€™re going to face with everything on the line,â€ manager Aaron Boone said. â€œTo go 5-1 against two really good clubs, it finishes off a really nice trip. Weâ€™re just getting started. Weâ€™ve got more to do.â€
Judge echoed that sentiment.
â€œWeâ€™ve still got a lot of work to do,â€ he said. â€œThe jobâ€™s not finished. Weâ€™ve got to keep going. Even if we can clinch tomorrow, youâ€™ve still got two more at home [against the Rays], and we want that home-field advantage.â€
The Yankeesâ€™ magic number as of Friday morning is two. That means they can clinch tonight with a win and a Boston OR Seattle loss.