The Race Continues
The American League East is a happening place, and the place to be on Wednesday night would be Fenway Park.
The Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles conclude a three-game series there that has seen plenty of home runs. Boston beat the Orioles 12-2 on Monday night but absorbed a 6-3 loss on Tuesday night. The Orioles scored five runs in the second inning on a pair of homers – J.J. Hardy’s three-run shot and Nolan Reimold’s two-run HR.
The Red Sox lead the AL East by two games over the O’s and Toronto Blue Jays, who are tied for the top wild-card berth. Lurking two games behind them, however, are the New York Yankees, 3-0 winners Tuesday night over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Back-to-back homers by Jacoby Ellsbury and Didi Gregorius in the seventh inning carried New York.
The Yankees are the hottest of that AL East quartet with eight wins in their last 10 games. And if they are going to make up more ground, they will get a sterling opportunity. After one more game with the Dodgers, the Yankees head for Fenway and a four-game series with the Red Sox (Thursday-Sunday).
The AL East is really the only place to look for any kind of race to the top and with so many playoff possibilities. The San Francisco Giants might be able to catch the Dodgers in the National League West, but they’re 3 ½ games back and in decent shape to earn a wild card.
The AL East, with its rivalries and head-to-head battles, offers the most drama.
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman