This just ain't right.
Accordingly, there will be a winner and there will be a loser.
But this weekend in New York may be different in that the two 90-win teams are merely gearing up for the playoffs. The Yankees have already clinched a playoff spot, while the Sox are virtually assured of making the postseason as the Wild Card entry.
In fact, oddly enough, the Yankees could end up clinching the division title while the Sox clinch a Wild Card berth all in the same weekend!
Can you say win-win?
Currently, the Bronx Bombers hold a 5 1/2 game lead in the East with nine games left to play. If they win just two of the three games against their arch-rivals, they will have a 6 1/2 game lead with six games to go.
Because the Sox have one more game left to play than the Yankees do, technically it would be possible for the teams to tie, even if they lose two of three. But it would take the Sox winning all of their remaining games and the Yankees losing each of their games.
In other words, ain't gonna happen folks.
Therefore, it will likely take a sweep for Boston to have any chance of winning the division, and even then it would be doubtful.
Meanwhile, there's the Wild Card, which has been what the Sox have been focusing on for awhile now anyway.
Boston leads Texas by eight games and need a combination of three wins and Rangers losses to secure a spot.
Heck, even if the Sox get swept, they could clinch a berth by virtue of the Rangers losing all three against the Rays.
In other words, these are simply two teams tuning up for bigger fish to fry. Not that the series isn't important - for confidence, pride, as well as to quench the competitive thirst - but it lacks the usual punch of a Yanks-Sox series.
The Red Sox won their first eight games against the Yankees this year but have lost six of their last seven in the rivalry. So, confidence may be a factor.
Tonight's starter for the Sox, Jon Lester, will likely be on the mound in game one of the ALDS, at least according to Peter Gammons. The Yankees have never beaten him.
Meanwhile, Yankees starter Joba Chamberlain is battling for a rotation spot in the postseason.
Only the Sox have a better home record this year than the Yankees. But the Sox are a .500 team on the road and they are certainly on the road now.
Win-win is not something you normally think of when assessing a Yanks-Sox matchup, but then again, this is not a normal series, come to think of it.