By: Billy Lewis
The New York Yankees are set to end the regular season with a weekend series in Texas. The Yankees have the AL East wrapped up so the only thing to play for, would be home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. They enter the final series of the regular season at 102-57. The Astros are 104-55, so in order for the Yankees to have home-field advantage in the American League playoffs, the Yankees would need to sweep the Rangers and the Astros would need to be swept by the Angels.
The only National League team that could hold home-field over the Yankees would be the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers enter the final weekend at 103-56. If the Yankees and Dodgers end the regular season with the same record, the Yankees would get home-field because they beat the Dodgers in the season series.
Setting Up the Pitching
The Yankees will send their three postseason starters to the hill in Texas. Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka will follow James Paxton over the weekend. Severino will be making his third start of the season and has looked dominant so far as he has 13 strikeouts in nine innings.
Rotation mainstays C.C. Sabathia and J.A. Happ will both be options out of the bullpen in the playoffs. To get ready for their roles both Sabathia and Happ made appearances out of the pen in Tampa Bay. Sabathia is expected to get another, spur of the moment, look out of the pen in the Texas series.
The Bronx Bombers are continuing to get more healthy leading into October. Edwin Encarnacion and Gary Sanchez should both return from their injuries in Texas.
With the ALDS beginning next week, it is easy for fans to look past this final series. While it might not mean much on the field, it can be vital for the players to get their final tuneup before playoff baseball begins.