Monday, August 14, 2017

Which is worse? Having Chapman for five, or knowing Boston will have Devers for 20?

Give Joe Girardi credit. Last night, Jiltin' Joe did the impossible: He achieved a new gold standard for excruciating, pineapple-up-the-butt, worst-loss-of-the-season defeats. 

I mean, the man is an artist. I thought Stephen King could plot a horror story. He's nothing, compared to Girardi. For a while, I believed Tom Coughlin - ex-coach of the NFL Jersey Giants - was the all-time master of last-minute, out-of-body, waterboard-worthy defeats, the human P.T.S.D. nightmare that would haunt me to the deathbed. Not anymore. It's Girardi, the new King of Root Canals. Somewhere out there lurk rich, troubled Yankee fans who will someday pay great money to have Girardi dress up in black leather and poke lit cigarettes up their gum wads. But for me, his greatest weapon of pain will not be fire and ice, or the rack or the rat cage mask. It will be his acolyte, the greatest horror that Shark Week ever produced - the unspeakably toxic Aroldis Chapman.

Let us stop for a moment and let those horribly odious five syllables sink in to your cortex: 

Uh. Rall. Diss. Chap. Min. 

It's a horror movie incantation. It is literally summoning the demon, calling for Mephistopheles himself to appear in a cloud of rosin. It is by far the most terrifying moment in any Yankee game (though the words "Now batting: Aaron Judge," with runners on base, is rising in agony.) Even if El Chapo succeeds - even if we win - we will be subjected to a wide-awake colonoscopy, the game saved by some incredible defensive gem. And we have him for five years - the longest and most expensive ($69 million) contract ever given to a reliever... and this by a front office that was publicly disavowing long and expensive contracts. For five years, we will watch this tattooed buffoon - sweat cascading in buckets - until someone swallows the money and trades him for a can of dog food, allowing Foodstamps Hal, our billionaire owner, to justify cutting payroll. 

Uh. Rall. Diss. Chap. Min.

I mean, it was incredible. When the Yankees took the lead in the eighth, with Dellin Betances in complete command, the first wild thought glanced off my brain: Surely, Girardi wouldn't just go back to the book and subject this game - this series - this season - to another El Chapo ninth? The definition of madness is to perform the same task over and over, long after it's clearly not working. Would Girardi actually bring in Chapman, as if nothing has happened, as if the Yankees have a closer?

Because we don't. The Yankees have 20 blown saves in 44 save opportunities. That's a conversion rate of 54.55 percent, the second worst in all of baseball. Only Texas, which has been destroyed by its bullpen this year, is worse. And yet to hear to the YES team talk, our bullpen is stocked with Olympian gods, the greatest of which is - gulp - the closer from Hell. The stat for a LOSS cannot fully describe the depth of Chapman's malignancy. He doesn't blow saves. He blows entire weeks. He's 29, going on 35, and he's already a dying arm bordering on head case.

Which brings me to a second ugly revelation from last night's torture chamber: Boston's willingness to play a 20-year-old 3B, while we put our stock in another generation of "cagey" vets. The other day, a friend asked why we often see other teams with 20-year-olds, but our rookies arrive closer to age 24? I mean, the modern sports world is brimming with kids. The NBA routinely drafts college freshmen - the one and dones - at 19. They had to ban NBA teams from drafting kids out of high school, because it was becoming so successful, it threatened their free college farm system. But when it comes to promoting youth, the Yankees always have an excuse not to.

This year's excuse is borderline brilliant: The Yankee front office - geniuses, all - had built such an incredible farm system, so brimming with prospects that the franchise had no choice but to trade a few, or we would lose them next winter in the Rule 5 draft. Therefore, barely three weeks after giving up on Chris Carter, who was hitting .201, we upgraded with Todd Frazier, who was hitting .207. And Miguel Andujar - age 22 - remained in Scranton, hitting .320.

You can say that our "baseball experts" know more than I do - and you're certainly right. But if these guys are so smart, why do we keep doing the same thing, over and over? Boston - with more to lose than us - brought up a youngster, Rafael Devers, while we traded four of our Top 10 prospects to make a wild card run that - given our current trajectory - might not last to Labor Day.

Give Joe credit. Just when you think it can't get worse, that the Yankees cannot torture you more over a nine-inning span... the incantation takes form, and you see Old & Sweaty warming in the pen. Howl, howl, howl. UNCLE! I say UNCLE!


KD said...

I don't blame Chapman because I'm sure he doesn't want to suck. I blame Joey Binders. He has better arms and two other closers. he could demote 38 Special to mop-up duty until he finds his mojo. he could promote Robertson to closer. He's just too ridged to do so. What we're seeing now is just crazy shit, driven perhaps by a pimply faced sabermatrician who believes The Mick was over-rated.

I predict that this week sometime, they will "find" a swollen/tweeked/torn/strained what-not in .357's body somewhere. that will explain everything! He's join Tanaka on the DL and we'll be done with Quicks Draw for the summer. we can only hope.

KD said...

Let's not forget that the one season Betances served as closer, he put in a Mo-like performance. But I'd still go with Robertson.

Urban Farmer formerly known as Dutchfan said...

It isn't all just Joe. All over baseball they use pitchers for 1 inning. Specialists for the 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th. Last night (about 4am out here) it hardly amazed me to hear that Chapman was coming in after Betances threw a few balls to get through the 8th. They all do it.
It is horrible.

Anonymous said...






Anonymous said...





13bit said...

I'm making a big batch of pineapple soup.

Anonymous said...

Last night, when I saw El Chapo warming - - and sweating - - out in the bull-pen, and the 8th ended without bringing in the runner on third, I told my wife, "Damn, I don't like this - - El Chapo's coming in and we ONLY HAVE A ONE-RUN LEAD!! (Cue duque's horror-music). I told her I had a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach - - which quickly morphed into a pain in an area which doesn't comfortably accomodate a pineapple.

Joey ("HE IS MY CLOSER") Blue-Binders strikes again!! He loses another one for us - - one of the most painful ones yet this season.

Hal - - for Chrissakes: grow a pair, and FIRE this brilliant humanitarian - - who is a one-man rehab clinic for hurting psyches of BB vets.

NWU: It doesn't reflect well on you that this man graduated with a degree in engineering - - engineering WHAT?? Certainly not BB strategy.

Yes, Fonz - - oops, Swannie - - I DID know those things you pointed out last night - - but it still stinks to keep repeating the most painful, over & over and over. LB (No J)

JM said...

Nothing left to say. Nothing left to see. Chapman blows the save, then blows the game. Judge strikes out in the 10th (has he EVER hit anything in a clutch, late-inning situation?).

Monty did fine. The one bright spot.

Most fun moment of the game: Aaron Boone was enthusiastically talking about Todd Frazier's clutch hitting, how he lives for these clutch situations and "don't mind the low batting average, he lives for these situations." As he's talking, a super appears on the screen showing Frazier is 1 for 9 with the bases loaded. I had to laugh. At least Todd hit a scorcher of a sac fly to center and put us ahead.

Another waste, since Bullethead Joe was bringing in Chapman. We knew. We all knew.

We watched most of Saturday's game with my cousin and her husband, both strong Red Sox fans who hate the damned Yankees, but we get along. They were bemoaning the same exact things about the Sox that we continually bemoan about the Yanks. My cousin calls the Sox the "Squanderers" because they blow so many leads and cough up the big opposition hit. I said we also have earned the Squanderer title.

Last night, we earned it again.

Joe of AZ said...

Is there a managerial DL we can put ol Binders this guy sucks....#FIREJOEYBINDERS!!!

HoraceClarke66 said...

ALL-CAPS has it exactly right. I call it "the Rotten-AppleTheory." You put in enough guys, sooner or later you reach the rotten apple for the night.

Don't know if Betances is the answer for closer: lifetime he has 28 saves—and 15 blown saves. Not very good.

But I do wish Cashman had traded Chapman back in the first half, when he still looked halfway decent, and we could have got a lot for him.

Chapman, Pineda, CC, Holliday—even Gardner and Castro: I thought all should have been dealt away at the time, if Cashman was really going to commit to rebuilding. They would have brought a boatload of new prospects, some of whom we maybe could have turned over for Sonny Gray, if he is really so invaluable. We could've had our cake and eaten it, too.

Ellsbury and Headley would've been harder to get rid of, but maybe biting the bullet on their salaries would not have been so hard for Food Stamps, when you figure in all the money saved by dealing away the names above.

el duque said...

John, you're absolutely right about that incredible moment when Boone was extolling the virtues of the Toddfather. It was kismet.

ranger_lp said...

Cashman is not least in Boston, ownership is willing to admit a mistake and correct it ASAP. Not here...never here.

Joe of AZ said...

Ranking contender managers: Joe Girardi
Girardi can manage relievers, and now he has a super bullpen to work with. The skipper and his staff deserve some credit for player development and beating timetables.

Excerpt from ESPN


Ill Rank Girardi 33rd out of 32 Managers

Anonymous said...

Worth pointing out again: AAA defending champipn Scranton RailRiders are 30+ games over .500. Running away with division, best record in International League. Class of the level. Again.

Alphonso said...

NO one will admit, on air, what we know to be true.

1. That Cashman cannot stick to a plan that works. That he will sacrifice the future for a near meaningless present. This is what all senior executives do.

2. That Girardi is so old school he still walks around with an eraser on his head.

3. That we, like the country, are simply screwed.

4. That the high-end prospect giveaway, just before the trade deadline, was a disaster. It was like trying to appease the North Koreans with free DVD's from Disney.

Anonymous said...

Cashman as back to back International League GM of the year...write that post, fellas. It will sting.

Old Man Yankee said...

It is not just that he gave up the homer to Devers. It is that Joe left him in for the tenth. And I don't get the Patrick Ewing flop sweat. Didn't the dude grow up in Cuba?
Isn't he used to the heat?
I guess the rest of the American League is used to his heat.

Anonymous said...

People keep bemoaning the feeble Yankee offense. Well what the bloody hell to they expect when Girardi/Cashman keep freighting the lineup with dead weights like Headley, T. Frazier, and Ellsbury? Gee--I wonder why they can't score runs when ONE THIRD of the lineup is guaranteed to SUCK, EVERY NIGHT! And after Garrett Cooper comes on like Lou Gehrig, he still starts Headley at first against a lefty? What the fuck does this jerk have against young players? And he pulls Monty again after only about 75 pitches and five innings?

Cashman and Girardi--dumb and dumber.

Local Bargain Jerk said...

I know how to solve this:

1) Rent some garage space reasonably close to Yankee Stadium. This link should do the trick.

2) Either encourage Aroldis C. to bring his own or visit another nearby location and purchase a "garage decorating kit" for our boy.

3) When the pressure of a big inning gets to be too much for him, take him at top speed in one of those bullpen golf carts so he can "blow off a little steam".

4) When he's finished redecorating the interior of the rented garage, the golf cart can whisk him back to the Stadium where he could retire actual batters and save actual games.

What could go wrong?

Leinstery said...

How many scoreless innings is Montero and his 6.06 era gonna throw tonight? 7? 8? My guess is 6 before a couple of Mets errors allow the Yankees to scratch a run across

Leinstery said...

OF COURSE the grandydick hit a homerun against the Yankees. EVER SINGLE GAME he hits one against them. And Luis Cessa, give up on him already. He's good enough to be a mop up guy, but that's about it

Leinstery said...

Ah textbook Yankees offense. Bases loaded against one of the worst pitchers in baseball, manage to get only one run in on a sac fly. FUCK this team

Parson Tom said...

I need a new hobby.

Bases loaded with one out, our 5 and 6 hitters coming up, and all we can manage is a sac fly that should have been a double play except Cespesdes didn't make a good throw and Hicks made a good slide.

Sanchez and Judge are going to get their pictures in the dictionary next to the term Flash in the Pan.

Rufus T. Firefly said...


I can see many failure modes in your plan. Primary is the possibility of personal injury (call Morgan and Morgan if you're in St. Botolph's town) especially given A-Chap's historical accuracy.

Let's just get him a appt. with Dr. Phil.

Anyone know if Dr. Phil is a Yankee fan?

Joe of AZ said...

I had to do a double take ...thought the yanks were facing Kershaw....than I saw the 6 ERA...SMH THIS TEAM IS GOIN To Craps!!! #FireADMIN

Parson Tom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Parson Tom said...

Obviously my previous comment inspired Judge and Sanchez to show they still have a pulse. You're welcome.

Leinstery said...

Well Tom it's now your duty to keep them going like a slave driver

JJ in MA said...

I find it hard to be encouraged even by a come-from-behind Yankee win.

It's that trade. Todd fucking Frazier. D-Rob's one thing, but to give up prospects just so YES can trot out that picture of Little League Toddy standing next to Derek Jeter every god damn game -- like that somehow allowed him to absorb Captainly superpowers -- has completely sapped my interest in this season.

Hal doesn't give a crap about winning or baseball in general and will never fire Cashman. Cashman runs the team so Hal can go play with his horses and make deals with lousy soccer teams calling themselves "football clubs."

Likewise, Girardi's job as safe as long as he shuts up and does what Cashman tells him. Girardi will execute the plan he has written down before the game in his binder and play to metrics in the face of the actual innings as they unfold, win or lose. We all know this.

I really think I might be done watching until the kids come up on Sept. 1.

Miguel Andujar. Chance Adams. These are the players I want to see. Sonny Gray and Jaime Garcia? Who cares? That's the Yankee future I'm supposed to be excited about?

Terrible trades gutted the heart from this season and showed the narrative for what it is: A marketing ploy.

With Judge's bat going dead post-HR derby and apparently no one willing to help him with his mechanics, I just don't see a reason to waste my time.

Am I wrong?

Local Bargain Jerk said...

Am I wrong?

On the contrary, JJ in MA, I'm voting yours as Post of the Week. Well said. Agree 100%.

Ken of brooklyn said...

Am I wrong?

No JJ in MA, I second LBJ's assessment adding my vote as post of the week. Agree 10000000000%

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