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MLB Playoff Race: Why Yankees Shouldn't Be Concerned About Making Postseason

ST. PETERSBURG - SEPTEMBER 03:  Manager Joe Girardi #28 and General Manager Brian Cashman of the New York Yankees watch their team during batting practice just before the start of the game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on September 3, 2012 in St. Petersburg, Florida.  (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
J. Meric/Getty Images
Benjamin J. BlockCorrespondent IIDecember 6, 2014

Things are not going in the right direction for the Bombers, but there shouldn't be any concern about making the playoffs.

The fat lady hasn't even started to warm up her vocal chords.

New York didn't help their own cause Tuesday night, as they lost their third straight game, to the division rival Tampa Bay Rays no less.

Tuesday's loss was especially hard to swallow because the Baltimore Orioles won in Toronto, and now New York and Baltimore are tied for first place in the AL East.

While it's unfamiliar ground for the Yankees to be in a pennant race in September, they have every opportunity to still make the playoffs. 

Although it's hard to be optimistic, here are some reasons that should alleviate some concern for Yankee fans.

 

Remaining games left on the schedule

The silver lining, which many fans choose not to see right now, is that there are still 27 games to play in the regular season.

Even better news than that, of those 27 games, 21 of them are against AL East opponents.

 

 

As easily as the Yankees lost their division lead, they can just as easily regain it, as the majority of games remaining are against the Red Sox, Blue Jays, Orioles and Rays.

The Yankees control their own destiny, and any team fighting to make the playoffs would want that leverage.

 

The benefit of having 'The Captain'

The Yankees have one thing that no other team in the American League East has, and that is Derek Jeter.

The late George Steinbrenner named Jeter the captain because he's a born leader and a consummate professional. 

According to this New York Times article by David Waldstein, Jeter shows why he's the captain as he reassures the fans that there should be no concern with the Yankees making the playoffs.

“We play everybody. How many games do we have left? 27? If we win all of them, we’re good, right? So if we play well, we don’t have to worry about anyone else.”

 

The advantages of a veteran clubhouse

The Yankees are composed of guys who have been to the playoffs before, and they are not going to lose composure where other teams would.

Despite the fact that Baltimore is tied for first place, the Orioles are relatively young and most of them haven't been in the position of fighting for a playoff spot before.

The Rays could be dangerous since they have won a pennant race before and have made three playoff appearances, but they still have to face the Yankees four more times down the stretch.  

The only people not concerned about the Yankees' playoff chances are the guys who matter, and those are the players and coaches in the Yankee organization. If they believe, the fans should too.

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