Gritty Yankees Still Very Much In Wild-Card Race

Girardi's Team In Must-Win Mode For Rest Of The Way

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Every game is now a must-win for the New York Yankees.

The team knows it. Their fans know it. Manager Joe Girardi knows it.

“You’d have to have your head in the sand not to know, or you just showed up here and you were on a deserted island,” Girardi said Wednesday. “One or the other. If you’re not aware of that, then I don’t know where you’ve been.”

The Yankees have only 10 games left to make up 2.5 games in the wild-card race. They gained ground with a huge come-from-behind win in Toronto on Wednesday, snapping a four-game losing streak.

“We hadn’t shaken hands for a while, so it was kind of nice,” Girardi said.


The Tampa Bay Rays are setting the pace in the wild-card standings while the reeling Texas Rangers are clinging to the American League’s last playoff spot. Texas lost to Tampa Bay 4-3 in 12 innings Wednesday.

The Yankees aren’t the only team in the hunt. In fact, New York is tied with Kansas City, and both Cleveland and Baltimore are closer to that second spot.

Forget about scoreboard watching — for now. All the Bombers can do is focus on the task at hand.

“All these games are huge,” said pitcher David Huff, who got the win Wednesday in relief of starter Phil Hughes. “We need to continue it, we need to keep getting after it and keep winning. There are no more little bumps in the road, it’s get it done or go home.”

The Yankees have mostly winnable games remaining — oh, and a pivotal series against the Rays.

Hiroki Kuroda will get the start in the Yankees’ series finale against the Blue Jays Thursday night. Then New York will start a six-game homestand against the San Francisco Giants and Rays before hitting the road to finish out the season at the lowly Houston Astros.

“This team never quits,” Girardi said. “We have a pretty mature group. They know what they have to do.”

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