Monday, October 5, 2015
Posted by el duque at 7:39 AM
Let the books show that the 2015 Evil Empire produced 87 victories, three more than 2014 and jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeussssssssst enough to qualify for the 5th Annual Bud Selig Memorial One-Game Wild Card Turkey Shoot.
Once the Yankees clinched this remarkable achievement, our canny team of vets promptly clocked out and went into Jesse Barfield mode, which is also known as Casual Dress October. Nobody wasted a hit. Nobody wasted a quality start. They played miserably, horribly, embarrassingly, Barfieldingly - they peed themselves in public - only to be saved by sympathetic strangers - in this case, the normally hate-filled Arizona Diamondbacks.
In this way, the '15 Yanks mirrored their owner - (or more appropriately, his son) - Hal "I'm Not Cheap" Steinbrenner, who prides himself on finishing second in free agent auctions. Last winter, I'm Not Cheap finished a close runner-up in the race for Yoan Moncada, the Redsocks likely successor to Dustin Pedroia, and he nearly signed several others, too. We're lucky. What a waste those players would have been. The fact is, we didn't need more than 87 wins - and as the YES men constantly remind us, nobody expected the Yankees to make it this far! It's been a great year, we over-achieved, and even if this team doesn't make it past the Selig Piss-Off, we won jeeeeeeeeeusssssssssssssst enough to make the 2015 Wild Card.
Once upon a time, there was a philosophy that the Yankees would challenge every year, that they were not the Padres or Brewers or Royals, who build powerhouse teams simply by finishing last for a half-decade. The idea was that the Yankees sit on the biggest market in pro sports, and each year, they would plow the proceeds back into the team. Thus, even if they won a pennant, they would sign a Mike Mussina or a Jason Giambi, or whatever Asian star appeared on the horizon. Rooting for the Yankees was different from supporting any other team. Other fans hated you. They would pick arguments. When you lost, they came after you. Nobody ever expressed pity for you. It was a source of personal pride, and you had to carry it, and it was likely nothing else in sports. You were a goddamm Yankee fan.
Of course, as we know, the MLB rules changed and luxury taxes became oppressive - blah-blah-blah - but somehow I'm Not Cheap became so infatuated by cutting costs that he even stopped chasing the free agents who don't affect the payroll caps. A generation of Cuban and Japanese stars came to America, and with the exception of Tanaka - a case where I'm Not Cheap was practically shamed into forking over the money (and he's been worth every penny, by the way) - the whole plan has been Barfieldian - to spend as little as possible and win jeeeeeeeeeeeeeussssssssst enough for that final open slot.
And they did it. They achieved their objective! Hoo. Ray.
Yep, the YES brigade is absolutely right. For the Yankees, it's been a wildly successful year. They made the one-game playoff - literally coasting into it. We won jeeeeeeeeeeeeeussssst enough to be here, and now - well, who knows? We are 1-5, without driving in a meaningful run in the last week, but at least we didn't waste anything. That's frugality, folks! We're just like the owner: Jeeeeeeeuussssssssssssssst enough. In fact, close your eyes and look out in right, that's not Carlos Beltran out there. Isn't that Jesse Barfield? Hey, let's put on some Huey Lewis. I need a new drug.