Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Save your ticker tape! Hero Yanks climb into third, now only eight behind in AL East

For starters, I would LOVE to believe in the '21 Yankees. 

Close your eyes, and last night's come-from-behind win coincides with the reopening of New York, the spiritual end to the pandemic, midsummer night dreams and days that are still growing longer. 

Across New York State - and even over Buffalo, a Yankee town! - fireworks in the skies last night signified a resurgence of hope. Yes, HOPE!

I'd love to believe the above bullshit, I really would. Close your eyes, and there's Clint Frazier, delivering a huge hit... and Jordan Montgomery, escaping jam after jam... and El Chapo, back and dominant. 

If the Yankee season can be saved, it needed to begin last night. 

Could it be a turning point? Might we someday look back and forget the misery that came with Covid, and tell our grandchildren how on the very night that the pandemic ended, the Yankees' malaise disappeared, as well? 

Look, I hate to be a downer. We all knew this team would get hot. And if we can - say - pull an old-fashioned Ryan McBroom this week in the gateway to East Aurora, it sure would restore hope. In the meantime, some thoughts... 

1. It sure doesn't doesn't look good when Giancarlo Stanton stands at home plate, posing like Zoolander, voguing for the cell phones with his home run smirk... to watch the ball die at the wall. That's what happened last night. Stanton fooled the announcers, who figured it was gone - (shout our name!) - but not the right fielder, who tracked it into his glove. 

This was an embarrassment. Had it hit the wall, Stanton might have been thrown out at second - that is, if he didn't settle for a single. This is a guy who is supposed to lead this team. Horrible moment. Terrible role model. I hope Stanton understands how last night's win bailed him out from an avalanche of criticism.  

2. Deivi Garcia - once hailed as our long-awaited Yankee Pedro - got walloped last night in Triple A. Before reading further, sit down: Deivi started the game, lasted one-third of an inning, walked four and gave up five runs. In six starts at Scranton, his ERA is well over 6.00. Yeesh. 

Back in spring training, he and Clarke Schmidt (now throwing off a mound) were supposed to be our insurance policies, if Cory Kluber and Jameson Tailon failed. Well, it's mid-June, and everybody is either gone or flat-out putrid - including Setback Sevy, who will miss another month, but who's counting? For the record, our current rotation in Scranton is Nick Nelson, Nick Green, Brody Koerner, Brian Keller and Deivi. Yikes.

Right now, all pitching stories seem to hinge on the stickum being used to doctor baseballs. Here's a question for the Peanut Gallery: Was the Yankees pitching facility in Tampa - dubbed the "Gas Station" - increasing spin rates by using pine pitch? Was Garcia last night clueless... or glue-less? (Also, let's not give up on him; the guy is 22.) 

3. Clint Frazier last night came through with a huge hit - bravo! - but but BUT... it was another ball lashed to left, something he hits commonly... at strategically placed fielders. He reminds me of 2019 Mike Ford, who smacked everything into the teeth of lefty overshifts. I would love to see Frazier use the entire field, along with his speed. (Hint: Bunt, Clint, bunt.) 

After the game, Jack Curry somnambulantly lapsed into his "Will this be the At-Bat Clint Frazier needs..." speech, which he has given countless times. But until Frazier starts hitting to the opposite field, it's hard to believe. He's now had 159 at bats. He's hitting .182.

4. Last night, the Rays lost Tyler Glasnow, who was heading toward a Cy Young season. He has a partial torn elbow ligament - the kind that true hero Masahiro Tanaka pitched through - and will miss a considerable period. You never root for injuries - the juju gods always take note - and the Rays are so young and resilient, they probably have a replacement.

Still, this is the Yankee moment, if such a thing is going to happen in 2021.

5. Congrats to "Hard Hittin'" Chris Gittens, who delivered his first MLB hit - a homer. If he kept going hitless, I was going to start calling him "Newborn Kittens" Chris Gittens. 

Trouble is, Luke Voit is on rehab, and soon, Gittens surely will be returned to Scranton. I have a sneaky feeling that we'll never see him again, at least in pinstripes. Thus, how about naming him after the controversial space rock that recently flew in and out of our solar system - and which may have been an alien scout. 

Chris "Oumuamua" Gittens. I like it, and wish him well on his interstellar travels.


JM said...

I decided not to watch, but ended up tracking the game intermittently online. Sanchez is hitting. Boone's pinch hit and pinch run replacements came through. Gittens...well, you know. The relievers weren't bad.

Only seven games down in the all-important loss column. I'm afraid to hope.

Anonymous said...

Please awaken from your impressionistic slumber and do some research, duque. Frazier this year has pulled the ball only 35 percent of the time; the rest are straightaway or opposite field. Next time he hits a homerun you'll no doubt fault him for not bunting.

idiot savant said...

see? see! I'm a genius!

Anonymous said...

Idiot will suffice in your case.

Anonymous said...

Stanton reminds me of Betta fish. they get all puffed up and fight their own reflection in a mirror.
I just can't help disliking a 30-ish Prima Donna that can't play the field and seems impervious to the term "hustle."
I think he frets between innings if he sweats in his uniform or gets stains from sliding.
It's not his fault that he makes more money than the Fed can print, but I can't warm up to him. Such a diva when he does anything that Bobby Murcer or Roy White or the Mick would do and act like he had done it before.

The Nostalgic Archangel

Alphonso said...

#2 - Just for the record, I gave up on Deivi when he was 21...maybe 20. As soon as someone compared him to Pedro Maritinez. Give him as a long as a leash as you wish.....he'll suck when 25, 28 or 38.

#3 - Good point about Clint. And 9 times out of 10, that is a double play ball rather than a double. Also, don't you think it curious that the Yankees chose to use Judge as their emergency centerfielder, even though Clint played more than 300 games there in the minor leagues?

"Turning Point"...could be a good book title.

HoraceClarke66 said...

I suspect that, with the clampdown on Spider Pig, this team is simply turning into what it was built as: hard hitting, with no pitching. Or fundamentals, depth, or spirit. Not to mention a real minor-league system.

DickAllen said...

It would not surprise me one bit to see Clint traded before the deadline.

Anonymous said...

Re. Deivi Garcia When he pitched that game a little while back, I was amazed at how much he has retrogressed. (Didn't he throw harder than 92mph when we first saw him? I thought he used to throw 94 or 95.) Well, in this game that I'm talking about, his fastball was very ordinary, his curve was just a big balloon with no bite at the end, and he looked like he had lost all of his confidence. He couldn't locate with either the fastball or the curve. His best pitch was an 83mph changeup. I think we've ruined another one. This guy won't amount to anything until he goes to another organization. There is no way, no way in hell, that he's going to become "Little Pedro" for the Yankees.

The Hammer of God

Kevin said...

As a measure of the talent on the team, in the outfield we have a 37 year old fourth outfielder who is gamely playing center everyday. Then we have the fragile redhead who fell to pieces when his bravado merely made people smile. The old-timer has better slash lines across the board, including a WAR of .1 versus a NEGATIVE 1 (-1). Amazingly the lower WAR number was accrued with twenty more ABs! And considering that the ancient centerfielder has to run on EVERY ball hit to the outfield. THE NUMBERS ARE IN FELLAS, WE ARE STUCK WITH snowflakes like Gingerbread Boy. Maybe his game is tailored more for teams like Pittsburgh. Aiiieeeeee we are cursed!

Kevin said...

The Orange One has an OPS+76 but some carry a torch for him. I HOPE THAT I AM WRONG, but he turns 27 in September. It's a telling indictment of this team that he isn't in AAA for more salting. Perversely we can't even afford to trade him, we couldn't even get a Wandy for him. In my opinion we got fools' gold since 18-19 when too many scrubs played over their heads. It burns a few teams every year. Now it's a collective "us".

Anonymous said...

Would someone be kind enough to provide and English translation of Kevin's posts?

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