New York Yankees
The 2010 MLB betting campaign could be coming to a close for the New York Yankees on Friday night, as they are forced into a second straight do or die game against the Texas Rangers in Game 6 of the ALCS.
In Game 5, LHP CC Sabathia finally took over, and the men in pinstripes finally looked like the men in pinstripes should. New York pounded out three homers, including the third of the series for 2B Robinson Cano, to nail down a 7-2 victory to bring this series back to the Lone Star State after a fairly terrible 1-2 three game home stand when the marbles were really on the table. Now, Texas has to just win one out of two on its home turf, where it is just 1-3 in the postseason to date, in order to advance to the World Series for the first time in team history.
It's going to be up to RHP Phil Hughes to extend this series to a fifth and decisive game. Hughes had never lost to the Rangers before in his career before he was rocked in Game 2; heck, he had never given up a run either. However, in just four innings of work, Hughes allowed ten hits, three walks, and seven runs, and was extremely lucky not to get bounced around for more than he did. It was clearly the worst outing on his career as a postseason start, especially after pitching seven innings of shutout ball against the Minnesota Twins in Game 3 of the ALDS to close that series out. The problem that this righty is going to have is that he is going to surpass the 200 inning mark in the very near future, as he already has 187.1 innings of work in this year. For a man that hadn't pitched that many in his entire career to date, manager Joe Girardi has to be incredibly careful.
On the contrary to Hughes, RHP Colby Lewis had never beaten the Yankees before last week's Game 2. However, partially thanks to Hughes' failures, and partially to his own good fortune, that streak is now over with. Lewis tossed 5.2 respectable frames, allowing just two runs. He scattered six hits and three walks and did a nice job getting out of some jams against one of the best lineups in baseball. Lewis has the same sort of problem that Hughes has in terms of his innings count. This is a man that had pitched just over 200 innings in his entire Major League career coming into this year, and now he is at 211.2 including the postseason.
This game is quite the tossup and we know it. We tend to believe that the Yankees can get this job done and force a Game 7. If you look at the history of the Rangers, you'll know that this isn't the game that matters. LHP Cliff Lee is waiting there in the wings for Game 7, and he'll be used to get the job done on Saturday night when all of the chips are really on the table, just as was the case against the Tampa Bay Rays in the ALDS.
ALCS Picks: New York Yankees -110