Like the ALDS, the Yankees trail 2-0 heading home for Game 3 on Monday against the Houston Astros in the ALCS, and starting pitcher CC Sabathia is confident he and the team can dig out of that deficit.
"It's a good team we're playing, but I feel like we've been right there in both games," Sabathia said on Sunday. "It can be 2-0 and then 2-1. We're right there. So a couple things go our way, we could easily be up 2-0."
Sabathia said the Yankees are not panicking despite losing the first two games of the ALCS. They were in the same position in the last round against the Cleveland Indians, when they rebounded to win Games 3, 4 and 5 and advance.
"This team, the mood never changes," Sabathia said. "We're always just playing baseball, going out one day at time, trying to win the baseball game. After the game yesterday wasn't any different than it always is, it's just how we've been. I look for us to come out tomorrow and play well."
Manager Joe Girardi has been on several Yankees teams that won a series despite trailing 2-0. Among them, he was on the 1996 World Series team that came back from an 0-2 deficit to beat the Atlanta Braves in six games.
"I think when you look at that team," Girardi said, "there were a lot of young players that played important roles, mostly Mariano (Rivera) and Derek (Jeter). ... There were veteran players that played very well. ... The message then was go win one, one game, and see where we're at, and that's the same message."
Sabathia struck out nine batters and allowed two runs and five hits in 4 1/3 innings when he last pitched in Game 5 of the ALDS on Wednesday. In the regular season, Sabathia went 4-0 with a 2.90 ERA in his last seven starts.
"He's been that guy that we've kind of relied on," Girardi said. "And you know that the situation hasn't been too big for him. But, again, I look at what the other two guys have done, and they pitched really well, too. To me, CC giving us a good five or six innings, and us scoring a few more runs."