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Perspectives Heading Into the ALDS…

by Paul Semendinger, October 5, 2020

This series against the Tampa Bay Rays promises to be a lot of fun. I am very excited to see how this all plays out – and I am more confident than I should be about the Yankees and their chances in this series.

The Tampa Bay franchise, since its inception, has always seemed to play hard and well against the Yankees. The games against Tampa Bay have never been easy. I don’t expect any of that to change in this series.

Like the old Red Sox series’ in past seasons, I think the animosity between these teams is real. The players do not seem to like each other. That usually helps to bring an extra level of intensity to the games and should add some more fun to the contests. I think the Yankees are very determined to not let this Rays team defeat them.

I am thrilled that the Yankees do not have to play in that horrible ballpark in Tampa. Many of the Yankees’ most frustrating losses have come in that indoor disaster area. Playing far away from Tampa’s ballpark should help the Yankees, hopefully a lot.

Everyone knows this, but it Gerrit Cole can dominate tonight, and pitch well again in a possible Game 5, the Yankees should be poised to win the series. The Yankees have wanted and needed the big arm for a long time. They have it now. I expect Gerrit Cole to help lead the Yankees to victory in this series.

The Rays do not have much of an offense. The Yankees clearly have the better team offensively. If the Yankees’ batters excise patience and smarts and don’t chase pitches out of the strike zone, they could have a huge series.

Am I crazy in thinking Gary Sanchez is going to have a few big hits again this series?

With Miguel Andujar being left off the roster, it sends a very clear message that he’ll be wearing a different team’s colors in 2021.

I’m trying to think of which players will surprise us all by having a HUGE series. The funny thing is, the answer is nobody. No player would surprise by playing great and having a big series. The Yankees are so talented that if any of the players steps up big, it will not be a surprise. After the series with Cleveland, I kind of expect them all to come up big.

If it gets to a Game 4, I would start Deivi Garcia over Jordan Montgomery. I think Garcia has better stuff and that makes all the difference.

As a Yankees fan, it is frustrating, very frustrating, and unfair, very unfair, that the Yankees are the 8:00 p.m. game all week. It is challenging to watch games late into the night and lose valuable sleep night after night. Major League Baseball should have scheduled a few of the games in the afternoon. In addition, those other teams who have all the afternoon games also deserve some prime time baseball.

Let’s Go Yankees!

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