Monday, October 31, 2016
Posted by el duque at 7:00 AM
But today, let's ponder a what-if:
What if... we ditched A-Rod and Tex, and promoted Gary Sanchez, in early June, instead of early August? What if... the youth movement turned just four L's into W's? What if... we didn't sell off our three best players? What if... Joe Girardi used his dominant bullpen in the post-season as Joe Madden and Terry Francona have done?
Think about that Wild Card game: Tanaka pitches the first three innings. Betances takes the fourth and fifth. Andrew Miller does the sixth and seventh. El Chapo takes it from there. Does the other team score a run?
And three days later, in the ALCS, Tanaka starts again - limited to three or four innings.
Occasionally, Severino gives us an inning. When possible, we rest the big guns and use fodder (Michael Pineda). CC would be held to three, told to empty the tank. We wouldn't have Adam Warren, though we could have still traded for Tyler Clippard. Cessa and Green would go short stints. But in any close game... Betances, Miller and Chapman - shutting down potential rallies, and going more than just one inning.
Damn. The 2016 Yankees were built to win a playoff. We had a shutdown bullpen for the ages, which could smother a team from the fourth inning onward. And we blew it. We fukking blew it.
Management was so adamant about getting its money's worth out of old players that it failed to see what fans understood in late May. (Secondary note: Boston took another tactic - banishing Rusney Castillo, the Panda, Joe Kelly, et al - regardless of what they were being paid.)
Listen: I'm still glad we did the August sell-off. The team was dead.
I'm just wondering what, if anything, has changed at the top?
Today's link sausage:
A speculative what-if trade piece on trading for Jurickson Profar. Next year's Aaron Hicks?
Joel Sherman recounts past Indian trades that reversed the Andrew Miller deal. The usual conventional wisdom.
Hot scoop: Yanks might use Adam Warren as... a starter! (Or they might not, blah blah blah)
And finally... They clutched their pearls and said Local Bargain Jerk's brilliant plan to Moon Big Papi was unclassy. What would they think of this? (The NFL is always there for us, no?)