If this year’s Yankees have shown us anything, it’s that things, just when they seem to be at the worst, can do a dramatic 180, and all of a sudden the present, if not the future, appears bright. (Of course, the converse is just as true.) It’s one of the nice things about this game, and those who would jettison Joe Torre—an ever more frequent suggestion in the tabs and elsewhere—for his occassional strategic gaffe and dubiious bullpen usage should keep that in mind, for there is no better skipper to navigate such shifting waters—and make no mistake, they can be dangerous—as he. Just last week, the Yanks had dropped 2 of 3 to the lowly Rays (who’ve been somewhat less than lowly since the break), and both the division and the wild card seemed almost impossibly distant. But look where we are now: They’ve taken two straight from Chicago, they seem to have “a sense of urgency,” whatever that means, they’ve closed to within 3 of the Sox and are tied in the loss column with the A’s. What’s more, as Cliff Corcoran has pointed out over on Bronx Banter, they’ve gotten over the nasty hump in the schedule, and now it is their competitors—the BoSox, the Angels, the A’s—who have it rough. So for all of its hiccups, this team still has its fate in its own hands. But that’s going to mean beating the Rays and Royals, not to mention the Red Sox, down the stretch. Let’s go!