The Yankees return to the Bronx after a successful nine-game road trip. They may not like the result of their short two-game stint in Arizona that led to two straight losses, but they ultimately come back to Yankee Stadium winning six of their nine games.
But the real challenge awaits the pinstripes back home.
It was an easy schedule throughout April, as the Yankees played teams like the Orioles, Tigers, and White Sox who are not expected to compete for a playoff spot in September. But New York will now have to face three formidable teams over their next 10 games.
First, it will be the Twins coming to town for a three-game weekend series. Minnesota has been somewhat of a surprise, as they lead the AL Central at 19-10 overall. They have won seven of their last 10 games, which includes beating the Astros three of the last four games to end their homestand.
After that series, it will be the Mariners coming to New York for a four-game set. Out in the tough AL West, the Marines have seen early success with a 18-15 record, which is only a half-game behind the Astros in the division.
And a division foe in the Rays will finish up the homestand with a three-game series. Tampa Bay has been one of the biggest surprises in the league, as they lead the AL East by 2.5 games over New York. And they just so happen to be 11-4 on the road this season.
The Yankees have managed to stay more than afloat with these injuries continuing to plague some key cogs like Aaron Hicks, Aaron Judge, and Giancarlo Stanton. But it will be a true test for their roster depth to see if they can take down some of the league's better squads. It's also worth nothing that all three of these teams have yet to face the Bombers so far this season.
Reinforcements may be on the way, though. Clint Frazier is allowed off the IL on tomorrow, and he felt good on his ankle after doing some work before the game on Wednesday. Also, Miguel Andujar could return this weekend after playing in a couple rehab games down in Tampa.
Either way, the Yankees will need to be clicking on all cylinders as this trying homestand will show what they are truly made of. James Paxton, who seems to have found his way on the bump, will get the ball first against the Twins on Friday night.