Friday, June 26, 2015

Staggering toward July, and chasing another Wild Card, the Yankees face their annual Cashman culling of the herd

It's easy to over-exaggerate the importance of a Yankee defeat, especially when your psychic existence orbits around the health of - say - Carl Pavano's buttocks. And last night's shutout was as predictable as a sugar hangover on November 1. Watching the Evils coast through the 7th and 8th innings - flailing at first pitches like they had one of A-Rod's private girlie shows to catch - you knew the night was lost long before Central Standard Time reached beddy-bye.

So here we sit, one-and-a-half games behind tepid Tampa in the AL East (or as The Master would stress, "... only ONE in the loss column, Suzyn!") If the season ended today, we'd face our traditional playoff whipping mules - the Twins - for the Nine-Inning Bud Selig Memorial Wild Card Cup. Think: Tanaka vs. Hughes, in the Land of Lakes. The winner - us, of course - would head to Kansas City or - (gasp!) - Houston, to face Dallas Keuchel and A-Rod's after-game furry delights.

But... the season doesn't end today. It hasn't even begun. Soon, the Yankees will launch the annual Cashman Midseason Makeover, a series of bloated contract acquisitions that has become as much of the Yankee experience as the selling of $39.99 ceremonial keepsake dirt. Soon, we will the launch the annual culling of the herd - when the franchise cuts bait on an Alfonso or a Roberts, while sending a "prospect" - always one the team craftily realizes has no future - for next year's Alfonso or Brian.

Some blogs scan MLB rosters for future Yankees. That's absurd. Last year, nobody foresaw Martin Prado, Branden McCarthy and Chris Capuano. Some immaculate births just happen. Nevertheless, we can study the Yankee roster to discern who is likely to go.

So... who is a goner?

1. Stephen Drew, if anyone will take him. The occasional two-HR game cannot justify an average below .200. I don't know who the Yankees get to play 2B. But the fan base is clamoring for a change. We went from "Robbie Cano Doncha Know!" to "Stephen Drew, everybody, boo!" Somewhere out there, we can do better.

2. A prospect. I'm thinking Gary Sanchez, the Triple A catcher who will play in this year's Futures Game. In recent years, the Yankees have been trading their former Futures Games kids (De Paula, O'Brien), and Sanchez has been hanging around so long, he should be on a Trenton zoning board. He could bag us a decent mediocre veteran. So, why not?

3. Heathcott/Flores/Williams - one of the three Riders of the Rail. Of course, before anyone goes, Jacoby Ellsbury has to heal, and it's fair to start wondering how bad his knee really is. Also, Heathcott and Williams have to heal. (Is there something toxic in CF that I don't know about?)

4. Someone from the vast soldiers of the Night's Watch that the Yankees have poured onto the bullpen during the month of June. Last I looked, we'd gone through 23 pitchers this month. I can't begin to fathom which ones are running out of options. But some will surely be either traded or eaten by a dragon.

5. Hal's money. He apparently doesn't like to spend it during in the winter. (I'm thinking he gets so infused with Christmas generosity, that he lavishes it on expensive pens and bottles of perfume for loved ones.) But Hal has no problem opening his purse at the end of the fiscal school year. He would make a fine Board of Education president, if any district is looking - (thinking of you, White Plains, hint hint.)

So how are Pavano's buttocks, anyway?

1 comment:

jdrny said...

Drew is batting.168 over his last 750+ ABs. Who would want him unless he stops trying to hook the ball to the right side???
He needs a strong batting coach !!!!