Eight wins. Just eight wins stand in the way of the Yankees and their 27th World Series title.
The Bombers won 103 games in the regular season, so eight may not seem like its much. However, the last eight wins will be the hardest eight wins of the season. It will mean the Yankees would have beaten a very good Angels team four times, and either the Dodgers or Phillies another four.
On a side note, speaking of the number eight, if you’re Dick Van Patten, “Eight is Enough.” There I go dating myself again. Eight is also the number Grover used to paint on the blue bald guy’s head on Sesame Street. Why couldn’t the SATs been more about primetime television from the 80’s, and not Geometry and Algebra? A2 + B2 = Chris is going to a college after he gets good grades at a community college because his SATs were awful.
Me and my tangents.
Anyway, a couple interesting facts for you about the Yankees and this series. This regular season, the Bombers were 15-0 when the score was tied at the end of the seventh inning. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, that’s the second longest streak in Major League history. Only the 1906 Giants had more wins in a row. They had 16 when the game was tied after the seventh. Why is this important you ask? I think this series will come down to the bullpens. The starting pitching is lights out on both sides, and the Yankees have the edge in the pen. They have the best pen left in the playoffs, hands down. So if the game is close or tied late, Shearn: Chapter 1, Verse 1 of the 2009 ALCS Bible says, “It’s advantage Yankees, boys and girls.”
Another cool stat to keep all of my Twitter followers from committing Chip Caray in the first inning after a lead-off double: The Yankees were a combined 21-14 against the teams in the AL that made the playoffs — 9-9 against the Red Sox (after starting 0-8, by the way), 5-5 against the Angels and 7-0 against the Twins.
If you are an avid reader of, “Off the Wall” or you listen to the “Off the Wall: The Podcast,” you know what I think about things “on paper.” If it’s on paper, it means it’s in the past. You can break down stats all you want. It’s a new season, it’s a new day, and at the end of this series, there will be new heroes to revere.