It has not been a fun second half for the New York Yankees this season.
The team is 19-26 since the All-Star break, and at one point, New York lost 14 games over a 17-game span.
Less than a week ago, the team’s slide seemed like it was never going to end, but over the past few days, the Yankees have been playing much better baseball.
In fact, they’re on a four-game winning streak as they enter play on Thursday.
Have they finally turned a corner on their slump?
This past Sunday, the Yankees were in danger of being swept by the Tampa Bay Rays.
A sweep would have done some serious damage to New York’s lead atop the AL East, but fortunately for the Yankees, they were able to earn a 2-1 win in the series finale.
That win likely offered the Yankees a small sigh of relief, and they’ve been starting to win some games since then.
After that 2-1 win over Tampa Bay, New York traveled home to host the Minnesota Twins for several games, and so far, the Yankees have taken three straight from the Twins, giving them four wins in a row overall.
A doubleheader sweep for the Yankees and they've won 4 in a row! pic.twitter.com/kr4fsbm1jP
— Yankees Videos (@snyyankees) September 8, 2022
It has been a very productive few days for the Yankees, and it certainly seems like the team is turning a corner.
However, there is one reason Yankees fans shouldn’t get their hopes up just yet.
This Has Happened Before
During an earlier stage of this brutal stretch for the Yankees, the team strung together five wins in a row.
That streak came directly after New York had gone 3-14 over that aforementioned 17-game stretch.
Needless to say, the five-game winning streak that followed that 3-14 stretch couldn’t have come at a better time, and it seemed like the Yankees were on the verge of leaving their struggles in the rearview.
Unfortunately, that didn’t end up happening.
The Yankees followed up their five-game winning streak by losing six of their next seven games.
So, while New York is certainly enjoying its current four-game winning streak, the team can’t let its guard down just yet.
History shows that the Yankees could begin struggling again if they aren’t careful.
The Road Ahead
The Yankees will battle the Twins one more time on Thursday before New York welcomes the Rays to town for an extremely important series.
As play begins on Thursday, five games separate the Yankees and Rays for the top spot in the AL East.
That’s still a pretty decent margin, but it has shrunk a lot in recent weeks, and it could get even smaller depending on how the upcoming Yankees-Rays series unfolds.
The @RaysBaseball head to New York to start a 3-game series against the Yankees. #MLB | #RaysUp pic.twitter.com/mZ4ROZcw4d
— Bally Sports Sun: Rays (@BallyRays) September 8, 2022
It’ll be a three-game set, and New York would surely love nothing more than to take at least two out of three and extend the gap at the top of the division.
The Rays, on the other hand, are looking to close the gap, and they’re likely motivated to do some damage since this series is their last chance to face the Yankees head-to-head in the regular season.NEXT: Aaron Judge Has Found A Perfect Spot In The Order