For the first time since 2012, the Yankees are AL East champions.
The Yankees defeated the Angels 9-1 on Thursday night, led by seven outstanding innings from Masahiro Tanaka and an early three-run shot from DJ LeMahieu, one of four Yankees home runs.
The 2019 season marks the 19th time in team history that the Yankees have taken the AL East crown in 49 seasons, nine ahead of the Red Sox, who have won the division 10 times.
The Bombers have been in the driver's seat of the division all season long, despite a plethora of injuries to key contributors that could have sunk the team. With star players like Giancarlo Stanton, Luis Severino, Dellin Betances, Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Didi Gregorius, Luke Voit, and Aaron Hicks all missing significant time at various points across the season, the Yankees still found away to become one of the best teams.
Gio Urshela blossomed into a .323 hitter, and his versatility on defense helped the Yankees tremendously. Gleyber Torres elevated his game to put him among the best young players in baseball, and his 38 home runs are extremely impressive for a middle infielder. LeMahieu, thought of as a role player at the beginning of the season, has put up MVP-type numbers, including his three-run home run on Thursday.
The Yankees' division-clinching win was also their 100th of the season, marking the 21st time in franchise history (and the sixth time since 2000) that the Yankees have won 100 games in a season, with the most recent occurrence being last season when they won exactly 100 games.
Aaron Boone also became the first manager in MLB history to win 100 games in each of his first two seasons.
The Yankees and Astros now both have 100 wins on the season. The Yankees would need to finish with one more win than the Astros to secure home-field advantage in the playoffs, as the Astros took the regular season series 4-3 from the Yankees.