The Major League Baseball season is back. After plenty of free agency moves, rumours and managerial changes, baseball’s top division is well and truly underway. The race for the 2018 World Series title has started and here we have two very different sides. The Blue Jays, a team blessed with potential, and the Yankees, a team with postseason ambitions. But this weekend, they will both go toe to toe not once, not twice but THREE times – check out our thoughts on the action below.
Yankees Primed For World Series Glory?
At the start of the season, New York were right in the mix to win the World Series. Looking back at the odds, most bookmakers had the Yankees as third favourites to win baseball’s ultimate prize in 2018 – and plenty of punters will still fancy New York to do just that. After 17 matches, the Yankees are third in the American League East but fans will be expecting a much improved effort as the season goes on.
With five defeats and five wins in their previous 10 games, consistency has haunted the Yankees so far this campaign. Aaron Boone’s side have the potential to go deep into the playoffs this year and it would be foolish to write them off on their early season form. The Yankees are one of baseball’s most successful franchises and another World Series title beckons if everything goes to plan in the coming months.
KEY MAN: CC Sabathia. The Yankees star has been a revelation when healthy but injuries have haunted his recent career. On Thursday evening, he put New York back in the win column; helping his team to a 4-3 victory over the Blue Jays. Sabathia went four and a half innings without giving up an earned run and his record now stands at 9-0 with an ERA of 1.88 in 13 regular season starts in matches following a defeat.
Toronto Defying The Odds So Far In 2018
The Blue Jays are second in the division, a few wins above their close rivals. Toronto fans were left distraught after a very disappointing 2017 campaign and changes were expected in the offseason. But that was then and this is now. There is a very different mood at Rogers Centre right now and Blue Jays fans will be hoping for more of the same after their superb start to the campaign.
It really is do or die time for John Gibbons now. Fail this year and he may lose his head coach role at Toronto. These next six matches (three against the Yankees and three against the Boston Red Sox) will tell us a lot about Toronto’s progress; are the Blue Jays the real deal or will they struggle against Major League Baseball’s biggest teams? Only time will tell but fans are rightly excited at what the future holds for this organisation.
KEY MAN: Justin Smoak. We spoke a lot about Justin Smoak last year and we are probably going to be talking about him even more in 2018. With Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki on the disabled list, Smoak has been handed the burden of expectation with the bat – and he has delivered. Currently sitting pretty with a 10 RBI, he is Toronto’s main man at this moment in time and supporters will be hoping for a big weekend from Smoak.
New York’s 4-3 victory earlier this week raised a few eyebrows and it wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see the Yankees follow that up with another win. These divisional fixtures are vital and New York have the experience to prevail. Toronto are getting there and we could see an inspired effort but this may be a stretch too far.
YANKEES 4-2 BLUE JAYS (Game 2)