Thursday, June 11, 2015
Posted by el duque at 6:33 AM
O, they were joyous. They were gleeful. Clearly, they were doing acid. Brendan Ryan tripled, and suddenly the first-place Yankees led by two, and with the lock-down bullpen - Brian Cashman's Christmas gift to us - the night shaped up as a gala party across the Yankiverse.
Well, as we now know, it was a crapola night in the Yankiverse. Jacob Lindgren blew the lead, Capuano finished the job, Jose Pirela was exiled to the Land of Coal, and Andrew Miller - our MVP thus far - is gone for two weeks, maybe more. (With the Yankees, nobody is ever out for just two weeks.)
Remember all those recent games when the bullpen couldn't hold a huge lead, so Joe ended up bringing in Miller? Turns out there's a price to be paid, after all. And unless somebody else learns to pitch the eighth, our new stopper, Dellin Betances, will be next to go.
I don't want to wave a white flag here, but yesterday serves as a grim reminder of how fast things can turn bad, and how bad things can turn... fast. We're still in first. Boston still faces the End of Times for Papi, Mike Napoli, a certain flyin' Hawaiian and the cast of "Golden Girls" - the elderly scions that other franchises would feel morally obligated to keep. (Boston's track record for honoring its stars of yesteryear suggests none of the above should get comfortable.) We still have Betances to abuse, and - yep - Nova is coming back - though it's been so long that I can't remember if that is something to want.
But yesterday's most depressing omen was Lindgren's inability to hold the lead. Thus far, he's been the Yankee definition of a successful top draft pick. We chose him in Round 2 last year, and he bolted through the system. He was a "safe" pick, a low-ceiling guy likely to contribute at least something. And that was the Yankee mentality in this week's draft: Grab older college guys, even if they project as No. 3 starters or utility infielders - because they'll still be better than Andrew Brackman. But we botched a 2-run lead, and suddenly, all the starters in the heavens can't pitch the eighth.
More injuries are ahead. And soon, Cashman will perform plastic surgery on this team. We won't have too many pitchers for long. Man the barricades. Hold the wall. Winter is coming, Robb Stark. It's going to get cold around here.