Carlos Betran was the hero of Games 1 and 2 of this weekend’s big series at Toronto and the goat of Game 3. (Well, not the goat exactly. There were many reasons the Yankees lost, but his misplay of the ball in right field certainly was entertaining.) His homers were thrilling and important and just what the team needed to climb back on top of the division in what promises to be a seesaw battle the rest of the way, not only with the Jays but throw in the Rays and O’s too, plus the Red Sox, who seem to be playing with understandable passion after the news that John Farrell has cancer.
Severino, while win-less since being called up to pitch in the majors, has proven he belongs. The kid’s good. And Tanaka was spectacular on Saturday, giving the bullpen a much-needed break by pitching his first complete game of the season. How his fragile arm will hold up after that outing is anyone’s guess. Evo, too, has been dependable, more each time he takes the mound.
I honestly don’t know where the Yankees will land by the end of September. Maybe they’ll peter out. Maybe they’ll go on a tear. Maybe, as I wrote above, they’ll continue to seesaw with the other teams. I really hope they hang in, because it makes this year’s pennant race truly exciting.
I’ll be there to cheer them on against the Twins tomorrow night. I’ll be wearing my purple Yankees cap to celebrate the great work of the Alzheimer’s Association and to honor my dear friend Peter Grad, who died suddenly two weeks ago. Peter and his wife Laurie co-chaired their annual “A Night at Sardi’s” benefit in LA for many years and raised millions for Alzheimer’s research and treatment. If anyone would like to make a donation in Peter’s name, go here.