There’s clearly some bad blood between these two teams, but the fact that the Rays and Yankees have never met in a playoff series makes this ALDS must-watch television. With that being said, it’s all love between Field2Court and Tbraysreviews, but don’t expect the same from these two clubs next week.
I don’t think it’s going to be a runaway series for the Rays even though they took 8 out of 10 games from their AL East foe during the regular season. Gerrit Cole is on the hill for Game 1 and I think Cole will return to his Astros playoff form which will make it difficult for the Rays’ offense. With that being said I’m predicting the Rays will win the series in 5 games as I haven’t been impressed by an underwhelming Tanaka and the rest of their pitching staff. Also, the Rays’ staff dominated a solid hitting Jays club in ALWC which has given me optimism for the upcoming playoff series. It should be an exciting span of ballgames with some potential drama infused.
While the Yankees were inconsistent the entire year, the majority of their struggles came against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Bronx Bombers won just two of the ten games played against Tampa this year. This is their worst record against the Rays in history, and it is not even close. With that said, the Yankees offense looked spectacular in the two-game series against the Cleveland Indians. They knocked seven runs off of Shane Bieber and scored ten runs to secure the sweep in Game 2. This series will depend almost entirely on whether the Yankees offense decides to show up. The Rays offense will certainly be there: it’s been dominant throughout the season and continued to be on display against Toronto.
This series will most certainly be competitive, tense, and exciting to watch for all baseball fans. While the Yankees offense could certainly continue to be contained by Snell, Glasnow, and even the Rays bullpen, I truly do believe in the ability to “flip the switch” in October. Game one will set the tone for the series and it is crucial for the Yankees to win with Gerrit Cole on the mound. JA Happ is the presumable game three starter, so a win in game one or two is essential. I predict the Yankees will win in five games while being carried by a revitalized offense and a strong bullpen.