Thoughts on both teams before tonight’s game against Tampa Bay:

Before I get into my little hopes and dreams section, I just want to say that I find it truly pathetic that this team has somehow managed to play worse than last year’s. They were in better shape this time last year and they didn’t have Jeter, Teixeira, Ellsbury, Beltran or McCann as “upgrades” at their current positions. Just an abysmal first half. They’re one game over .500 and only 2.5 games back of Toronto for the division lead. Disgusting.

I’m just gonna come out and say it: this wouldn’t be happening if A-Rod was out there everyday, allowed to play. Now that I got that out of the way…

Yankees

Thing I’m Expecting: Low scoring offense. Maybe they’ll bump Brian Roberts up in the order for hitting that game tying HR in the 9th last night. I know I picked him to suck again – well, he made me eat it, alright. I bet we’ll all be rewarded with another month of his futile bat thanks to that (ultimately) meaningless dinger. Sorry, Rob Refsnyder, but you’re no veteran!

Thing I Hope to See: A win. That’s all. It’s too much to ask for anyway. I don’t care if they piece together 4 sac flies and win 4-3. Maybe they can get some length out of Kuroda considering the Yankees used 6 pitchers in 12 innings last night, but y’know, we’re probably not going to get any of this.

Player I Want To Watch: I’m looking forward to seeing Alfonso Soriano bailing and wailing in all his ABs against David Price. I expect nothing but horrific output, and that’s what I want now because maybe it’ll convince the front office to dump him once and for all. This team has turned me masochistic.

Rays

Thing I’m Expecting Tonight: David Price has a career ERA of 3.84 against the Yankees in 145.1 IP. He’s had a sensational season so far and seems to have a chip on his shoulder due to all the trade rumors swirling around him. As the deadline approaches, I expect him to go all out to dominate the Yankees, which shouldn’t be difficult as they’re mostly pitiful at driving in runs.

Thing I Hope To See: I’d like to see Kuroda dominate Tampa Bay’s short, weak lineup. But anything positive seems to be out of the question right now as far as the Yankees are concerned. I hope to see them turn it around, but I also hope the entire of city of Boston mysteriously disappears like people on that new HBO show “The Leftovers.”

Player I’m Afraid Of: Matt Joyce. I don’t know why I neglected him when I wrote this yesterday. He was 5-6 on Sunday (against Baltimore) with 2 HR, 1 2B, and 4 RBI. Joyce smashed a bomb off David Phelps in the top of the 1st last night to build upon that, but went hitless for the rest of the night. I worry about his powerful lefty swing in Yankee Stadium, opposing Kuroda who can tend to leave his sinker up at times.