The Yankees have had two games postponed consecutively due to inclement weather, and that mightâ€™ve been the best-case scenario for them as they try to avoid dropping further in the AL East standings. A few days off to rest up and heal is a positive thing, but it seems as if the Yankees wonâ€™t be given another day of leisure as they prepare to take on the Mets in a Subway Series at 1:05 PM on Saturday.
However, the Tampa Bay Rays were blown out by the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday, but the Red Sox extended their lead in the AL East, securing victory over the Oakland Athletics. The Yankees currently sit 9.5 games back, a seemingly hopeless spot. However, the Rays are in the top spot in the Wild Card, and the Yankees have a chance of catching them at just five games back. They desperately need to string together a few wins ASAP, otherwise, they could see their postseason hopes slip away prematurely.
There have been a few negative factors impacting the Yankees’ sought-after success recently, and one of them is closer Aroldis Chapman. Chapman has struggled mightily the past few weeks, coincidentally ever since the MLB cracked down on sticky substances.
In fact, over the last five appearances, Chapman has allowed eight hits and seven earned runs, striking out just five batters. He has seen his ERA balloon to 3.77 after having a strong start to the 2021 season.
When a player struggles to this degree, the manager should consider taking a different path toward closing out games, but Boone remains committed to Chapman, which could end up being a negative move.
â€œIf we have a chance to close out a game, I expect (Chapman) to be out there,â€ Boone said. â€œI do think thereâ€™s been a couple outings in the last several where heâ€™s still been a little out of line delivery wise and that led to a couple balls and trying to find it out there in the fire.â€