Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Quality At-Bats

Yet another amazing tidbit from the Paper of Record—which was a veritable fountain of banality today—came from Billywitz informing us:

"Neil Walker, who can be counted on for quality at-bats, could find his way into the lineup at third base for Miguel Andujar, which would also give Sabathia—who yielded more ground balls than any other Yankees pitcher—a more reliable defender."

Wait.  Full stop.  "Counted on for quality at-bats"?

Neil Walker this season managed to hit all of .219, with a .664 OPS, meaning that he could usually be counted on for an at-bat of absolutely no quality whatsoever.

What Billwitz, who struggles with the English language, really meant to write was that Neil Walker is a veteran ballplayer, and sportswriters, GMs, and managers alike can agree it is better to lose safely with such a vet than risk anything at all on an infinitely better rookie.

Walker, as it turned out, did not have a single assist tonight.  At the plate, he did manage a single, and bases-loaded HBP that drove it a run—hardly a Ruthian effort.

The absurdity of the Yankees' season came full circle in the seventh inning when Walker was sent up to hit yet again, even with NYY trailing by three runs and desperately needing some offense.  He struck out, but in a quality fashion, you understand.

Walker had been obtained in the first place, of course, because Cashman simply didn't trust one of his own, prized rookies.  But even when said rookie, El Matador Andujar, hit brilliantly all season, breaking Joe DiMaggio's record as Yankee rookie for doubles, Coops still wasn't buying it.

At the first sign of trouble, to the bench Andujar went.  Which only made sense, because as we all know, whenever DiMaggio got in the least little slump, he was immediately yanked from the lineup for Myril Hoag or Dusty Cooke.

Right to the very end, Andujar, the team's most consistent hitter all season long, sat on the polymer pine while the Yankees came up one run short.  Nice as Walker's critical HBP was, could it have been possible that Andujar would have crunched a game-winning, oh, I dunno...DOUBLE???

But hey, no surprise here.  Year after year, Brian Cashman insists that he knows best just what spare parts to pick up for the Yankees...and year after year, his teams fall short in the postseason because they are one reliever, one utility infielder, or one veteran starter short.

Last year it was picking up Sonny Gray over Jason Verlander.  This year, it was picking up Lance Lynn over Nathan Eovaldi and Neil Walker over Steve Pearce.

Pearce, if you'll recall, was released by Coops way back in 2012, just hours after making a game-saving play in the field.  He has tormented us ever since.  And here he was, wrapping up our season by making a game-saving play in the infield.

The mystic circles go round and round for Brian Cashman, yet somehow enlightenment never dawns.

1 comment:

TheWinWarblist said...

What I wish to know is whether or not Young Nathan has proven to Cashy that he is a valuable pitcher? Valuable enough to sign him this offseason? Or will Nathan be forever exiled to torture the Yankees every post-season for eternity?

Fuck Cashman.