Thursday, April 25, 2019

And another one's gone, and another one's gone, another one bites the dust...

Officially, the Yankees last night said that Clint Frazier, the Death Star's hottest hitter, should miss the next 10 to 14 days. Said team spokesman Saaron Huckabee Boone: 

"Fraz very much feels like he can play or is close to playing, but the MRI revealed enough in there — I don’t have the exact what it is — but revealed enough of some partial tear and it’s gonna cost him the ten days."

Realistically, not even Kellyanne Conway would claim that "Fraz" will be back in 10 days. It's just fun to say such things. If we parse Boone's exact words, the terrifying algorithms emerge.

"... very much feels like he can play or is close to playing..." 

Translation: Fraz is frustrated, as he should be. The poor guy missed last year. He is starting to look like a box score hallucination, a ghostly presence, similar to Brigadoon Refsnyder, who haunted our souls for four years, before being finally exorcised for Ryan McBroom, an equally haunted name. (Note: We could see Ref next week; he's playing for the Arizona D-bags.)

"... the MRI revealed enough in there..."

Translation: It doesn't matter how Fraz feels; the truth is in that infernal scanner, and how it the 8-11 glossies will be read by the lab technicians.

"... enough of some partial tear..."

Translation: Whoops. That's "tear"- which rhymes with "dare," not "beer." He'll be wearing a boot for a month.

"... the ten days..."

Translation: May, maybe June, maybe the All Star break.

I hate to sound so rancid. But whenever a Yankee falls, the Death Star's first impulse is to vastly underestimate his recovery time. This pushes the player out on a ledge, with fans questioning his commitment. Last week, it was telling that Aaron Judge refused to even speculate on how long he will be out; the team embarrassed him last September by soft-soaping his broken wrist, leaving the media to constantly wonder where he was. In fact, nothing was amiss: The guy had a broken wrist, and he had to wait until it healed. 

Fraz has a tear in his ankle. It shows up in the MRI. He won't play until another MRI shows it's gone. It won't matter how badly he wants to be out there. And Giancarlo Stanton yesterday got a cortisone shot in his shoulder - WTF? when did he hurt his shoulder? Two weeks ago, it was a muscle strain. When did it become the shoulder? Or was it always the shoulder, and the Yankees simply didn't tell us? WTF?

The Yankees won last night - six in a row - through spirited play by a bunch of no-names, who aren't important enough to be injured. Gary Sanchez struck out four times, and if you closed your eyes and installed the regular lineup - from Hicks to Didi - you'd have a hard time imagining them coming back from a 5-0 deficit, as this team of overachievers did. 

For now, our West Coast swing offers nothing but tomato cans. No Dodgers, no Astros, not even the Padres (14-11). And when we return home, we'll face the fading Twins (leading the AL Central, but 5-5 in their last ten games) and Mariners (who have lost 7 of 10.) Six in a row. Amazing.

All we need to know is that the Yankees stand just one loss behind Tampa and five losses above the ghost ship that is Boston. (And Nathan Eovaldi is supposed to be out six weeks, following elbow surgery. If it were the Yankees, we'd be thinking eight to ten.) 

Six in a row. And Gardy batting third. WTF?


JM said...

Welcome to the Papier Mache Yankees. Guy swings at a pitch...boom, out for a month. Another guy swings at a pitch....bang, out for longer because he injures his shoulder somehow when he's recovering. Third guy steps on a, his ankle is ripped to shreds.

I don't get this. When did everyday baseball activities destroy players like this? It's crazy. Tommy John surgery, sure, that takes a long time. Running into a wall with your head, that's gonna take a while to get over. But swinging a bat? Getting back to a base?

This all started, for me, when Wang--a professional athlete, mind you--wrecked his career running the bases. Not sliding. Not diving. He was just running the bases like kids do millions of times growing up, but his porcelain bones could not take the strange activity of running down a chalk line.

I know it started before that, and there have always been freakish injuries from seemingly inconsequential activity, but Jesus H. Montero. Were the old timers right? That weight lifting was bad for ball players? Are the new-fangled bases to blame--nailed down tight with no give, like they used to have?

Something is seriously wrong here. This is just nuts.

TheWinWarblist said...

The bases are at least partially to blame. But doesn't anyone wrap their joints before every game or work on flexibility with the strength training?

TheWinWarblist said...

Duque, we need some Spanish rewards. I'll take jamón ibérico if you're unwilling to give us beautiful people.

HoraceClarke66 said...

The bases are one problem. The replays are another.

I tell you, it's like Twister out there, with these guys trying to actively push people off the bag with the tag, hoping for the video replay out.

Let the bags move, end the replays.

HoraceClarke66 said...

And a sprain is one thing, a tear is another. Dammit to hell, this is another 2 months on the DL, at least.

For all his moaning and groaning, Tyler Too is turning into the luckiest son-of-a-bitch on the planet this season.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Oh, and Stanton's "residual" shoulder injury?

This is something we've seen before: Coops failing to do his due diligence. Guys come to the Yanks with injuries that are not picked up, and that do them in.

Personally, I wouldn't mind if Stanton did an Ellsbury. But the idea that his signing will be used to sign no one else, ever, irks me.

Joe Formerlyof Brooklyn said...

Please remember (1996) the very mortal words of Mariano Duncan:

"We play today, we win today, thass it!"

JM said...

I wouldn't mind Stanton doing an Ellsbury, either. Never liked the trade, and can't believe how well Jeter played the front office when he unloaded Stanton.

And Joe, let's not forget the immortal words of Luis Tiant in a hot dog commercial:

"It's great to be with a weiner!"

Local Bargain Jerk said...

One starts to wonder if some "supplement" is being used by this group of players that either 1) causes their muscles to become more powerful than their sinew's corresponding ability to hold things together or 2) simply breaks down their sinew.

It's a small sample size but, when half of your 25-man roster is on the IL with various strains and tears, it's alarming ... and possibly more than bad luck.

Alphonso said...

The team is better now than on opening day.

Anonymous said...

Maybin??? Where's Harper?

Anonymous said...


That's my thinking. It's happening all over the league. They're taking something and it leaves them susceptible to tears.

Doug K.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone seen a specific diagnosis consequent to Frazier's MRI--I mean something more specific than Boone's mumbling after last night's game? Is it a muscle sprain or tear? A torn ligament? I can't find anything.

I have a big old man-crush on Clint--he seems like a fine human being and a superb ballplayer, a rising star for a team in desperate need of fresh young talent. This temporary stumble, coming after he finally seized his chance, seems the cruelest blow of the team's ever-lengthening casualty list.

But here's a glimpse of redemption: who ever thought that a team fielded under Cashman's overcautious, plodding regime would merit the adjectives "scrappy" and "exciting"? The eagerness and athleticism of this "B" team make for a far more entertaining brand of baseball than the all-or-nothing, strikeout-or-homerun-trot marathons of Cashman's wet dreams. I mean--winning a game with two outs in the ninth on a single, stolen base, and single? And at the center of that vortex was none other than the team's forgotten man, Tyler Wade, a dynamic young talent perennially shunted aside by Cashman's insecure preference for thirty-something nonathletic infield mediocrities who were good three to five years ago but carry the ass-covering reassurance of a "name"--LeMahieu being the latest incarnation. But with Frazier out, Wade finally gets his chance for the everyday reps denied him until now, and a chance to show what he can do, at long last, with his speed and dynamism on defense. Last night was just the beginning. If it required a decimation of the roster, a baseball Omaha Beach, to finally give this kid his shot, then so be it. There is a dark karmic perversity at work here--I say enjoy it while it lasts, before we must endure the boredom of Sanchez and Stanton flailing their clubs in an endless recurrence of the same. These rag-tag kids, who really like each other and root for each other and bust it from the gut rather than strut from on high, are a pure joy. Savor it before the high-priced egos march back into view.

Anonymous said...






JM said...

Sanchez seems to be injury prone. Stanton is. Hicks is. Judge is. Bird... well, obviously.

The idea of seeing significantly more of our suddenly exciting team is not out of the question.

HoraceClarke66 said...

LBJ, this has been a characteristic of the entire PED era, no? Guys play like gods, then suddenly get weird, mysterious injuries. Tex's "wrist sheath," Giambi's brain...whatever it was.

I do think it varies case by case. The Judge strikes me as just a very big guy who throws his body around a lot; he would be almost bound to get hurt in any case. Stanton's injury seems to be pre-existing, so who knows?

Clint and El Matador went down with BPI—"Basepath replay injuries." Honestly, the way these guys now apply the tag and keep it on would've led to a dozen fistfights back in the day. Maybe it will take someone popping someone to end this nonsense.

But very likely, PEDs are involved in any case.

HoraceClarke66 said...

I agree, ALL-CAPS. i do like the hustling desperation of these kids.

And yes, it's nice to see Tyler Too get a shot, Anon. But I've rarely seen a major-leaguer misjudge TWO routine flyballs the way he did in left last night. And he can't hit his weight.

We do need to get at least some of the regulars back, or it will catch up to us.

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