Tuesday, March 24, 2015

If Chris Young homers in a forest, do the trees cheer?

For the record: I hope Chris Young salvages his career.

Dear God, it'd be nice to have someone in the lineup with an actual pulse - one guy worth holding water to watch, instead of rushing to the kitchen for a mound of glistening comfort food. Right now, there is A-Rod - sort of - and maybe Brett Gardner. Now that Jose Pirela is out, and since Rob Refsnyder never even got a chance, the Yankees are a stack of Strat-o-Matic cards with withering numbers. Unless the dice are incredibly lucky, we could be a team in free-fall.

But let's get back to Mighty Chris Young, who is currently competing with Stephen Drew for the position of 2015 Yankee Malignancy Poster Boy. Until yesterday, Young was most famous this spring for striking out against the pitching machine in a simulated game. Yesterday, he hit two home runs, two!, prompting - well - the dreamers to dream, I guess. Or something like that.

Trouble is, we've seen this movie before. Young is 31. Last year, with the Mets, he hit .205. That's no misprint. Two-oh-five... and without power. He hit 8 HR. He drove in 28 runs. It was the kind of performance that annually makes the Mets the Mets. In early August, they tossed him out like a bag of bad clams. For three weeks, he festered on the scrap heap. In early September, Brian Cashman - the American Picker - signed Young. Over the last month, Young hit a Ruthian .282 with three HRs, and the Yankee YES men became apoplectic about Cashman's genius. Yes, it's a story worthy of a Yankeeography.

Unfortunately, if you look deeper, it turns into an episode of Serial.

In his first four Yankee games as a starter, Young did all his damage. He went 8 for 16 with 3 HRs. But take away those four games, and what do you get?

He hit .219.  Two frickin' nineteen.

(For the record: Young homered off Tampa's Jake Ordozzi and Jake McGee, and Baltimore's Brad Brach.) 

So why do we have Chris Young? Simple: He's cheap.

With the Mets, he made $7.5 million. This year, he signed for $2.5 million. Hal "I'm Not Cheap" Steinbrenner brought him aboard because - well - he's cheap! He fits I'm Not Cheap's business plan. Buy low, release in June.

Two home runs? Great. Just great. But if you'll excuse me, I'm going to the kitchen. Yell when A-Rod comes up. Or maybe, don't. If I want to watch the Mets, aren't they on a different channel?


KD said...

Talk about hubris. Being RELEASED by the Mets ought to disqualify one from becoming a Yankee. No exceptions!

MJ said...

You got me with the "bag of bad clams"/"American Picker" combination. I laughed out loud, and it made a bunch of other people in the library stare at me for a second. If they'd shushed me I'd have taken the hit for you, though; that was the funniest stuff I've seen all day. Well worth a shush.