Wednesday, July 22, 2009

2009 and Feeling Fine

Five games after the All Star Break, and five more wins.

All of the games have been close, and three of them pure pitchers' duels (while the other other two had competent pitching, as well).

One entire time through the rotation post-All Star break and every pitcher, and the bullpen is pulling their weight.

The three game sweep in Anaheim?

It appears even more an aberration, and not the rule.

The Yankees have won 18 of their last 22 games. They've won blowouts, pitcher's duels, shootouts and because of Luis Castillo.

The team has an offense that ranks at or near the league lead in almost every category, and a pitching staff, rotation and relief, whose combined ERA is 3.84 since Alfredo Aceves was recalled to the major league team on May 5 (not including tonight's game).

As one might expect, when good things happen to a team, the standings tend to change, and the Yankees are again in sole possession of first place--the first time since 2006 they have been so this late in the season.

What's more, though, is that this team is fun to cheer.

It's not just the walk offs and the pies (though those do help), but the fact that with the apparent exception of Angels Stadium in Anaheim, the Yankees, you can be pretty sure, will play a decent game. They'll win most of the time, but it seems that even when they don't, they keep you glued in your seat until the final out of the ninth inning.

The team's not just fun on the field, but this season they're also great off of it, with events such as Hope Week and making a conscious effort to actively participate in community outreach, not as individuals, but as a team.

It's been a long time coming since the Yankees have spurred such great feelings.

This is a team that could go places, but I'm pretty sure, if you're reading this post, that you didn't hear it here first. You already knew.