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The Yankees just continue to win, only losing consecutive games one time in the entire month of June and only three times since April 12. They have their ace on the mound with a significant pitching edge, but the Guardians come in with momentum, having taken three of four against the Twins including in walkoff fashion on Thursday. But New York is just too good in general, and after off days!
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Garcia’s 2022 record: (24-15)
Many people thought the White Sox would take the AL Central crown. Others believed it was the Twins turn. A few thought the Tigers had enough young talent coming up to make a push at the division crown.
Few picked the Guardians and even fewer believed in them when they were 19-24 near the end of May. Well after a 20-10 stretch over the past 30 days, Cleveland is now five games over .500 and just one game back of the Twins after taking three of four from them in a series this week.
Cleveland is of course powered by Jose Ramirez, who’s hitting .296 with 16 home runs, 63 RBIs and has a .977 OPS. But Andres Gimenez, the hero from Thursday’s win over Minnesota has been the real story.
The 23-year-old is having a career year, hitting .308 with nine home runs, 37 RBIs and an .858 OPS.
For New York, just about everybody is going right. Aaron Judge is still playing like the MVP of the American League leading the team in average (.290), home runs (29), RBIs (59), hits (82), OBP (.365) and OPS (1.001).
But New York has been so dominant because of its depth with DJ LeMahieu (2.5), Gleyber Torres (2.4), Jose Trevino (2.2), Josh Donaldson (1.7), Anthony Rizzo (1.4) and Giancarlo Stanton (1.3) combining for 11.4 wins above replacement by themselves (it’s 15.2 when you count Judge).
There are few times when Gerrit Cole is on the mound and he doesn’t have a significant pitching advantage over his opponent, but Friday’s matchup at least on paper looks quite lopsided.
Cole is putting together another stellar year, with a 6-2 record, 2.99 ERA, 1.01 WHIP and 111 strikeouts in 87.1 innings. The veteran righty has thrown at least six innings in 11 of his past 12 outings, 10 of which have been quality starts.
He already dominated Cleveland once this year, throwing 6.2 shutout innings, allowing just four hits, one walk and nine strikeouts in a 10-2 win back in April.
He’s countered by Aaron Civale, who frankly, has struggled this season. Civale enters play with a 2-4 record, with a 7.20 ERA and 1.60 WHIP. In nine starts, Civale has thrown just one quality start and has only pitched beyond the fifth inning twice. Now, he has to face baseball’s best offense.
For New York, we’re going to single out Isiah Kiner-Falefa as our x-factor. The man just finds a way to get on base when he’s on the road, hitting .284 (29-of-102) with a .353 OBP outside of Yankee Stadium.
That said, 25 of those hits have been singles with four doubles, so don’t expect a lot of power.
For Cleveland, few have been as good at home as Steven Kwan. Kwan leads the team with a .387 OBP in games at Progressive Field and is hitting .290 (27-for-93) in 28 home games this season.
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|Yankees vs Guardians Information|
|Teams||New York Yankees at Cleveland Guardians|
|Location||Progressive Field, Cleveland, Ohio|
|Time||Friday, July 1, 7:10 p.m. EST|
|How to watch||YES Network, Bally Sports Great Lakes|
Tony writes about baseball for WSN.com after recently graduating with his Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Prior to that, Tony was a local sports reporter for MLive Media Group, based out of Jackson, Michigan where he covered everything from high school to professional sports. He graduated from Michigan State in 2015 with a degree in journalism. During his time there he covered the Michigan State football and men’s basketball teams from 2013-15 and hosted a sports radio show on WDBM 89FM.More info on Tony Garcia
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