Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The terror, Mr. Boone, the terror: What's our playoff lineup if everyone is healthy?

Today, let's play what should be a fun-time parlor game: 

Let's do the playoff roster without one gonadal hiccup, at full peacock, with nobody playing hooky to binge-watch GLOW. Yeah, it's a six-grader's fantasy land, but if it happens, we could find ourselves staring into Freddie Nietzsche's abyss.

What if, come Oct. 2, the Yankees are healed? (Note: I'm not including Mig Andujar, Greg Bird and Jackbody Ellsheimer, none of whom may ever return as Yankees.) Our lineup could be Johnstown at flood crest. Listen: This is no joke. Six weeks from now, we could be bursting from our Wonderbras, and it might not be pretty.  

Let's start with an easy slot: Catcher. No problem. Gary Sanchez and Austin Romine (who should start, if Gary is slumping, but we know that won't happen.) Best catching duo in baseball and, with Higgy, the game's best 3-deep.

In the infield, everything gets dicey.

1B: Luke Voit, Encarnacion, or DJ LeMahieu? 

If Luke is back, he deserves a shot. But a healthy Encarnacion would be a force. And let's face it: The choice has to be DJ, right?

2B: Gleyber or LeMahieu? Depends on who plays first. Both belong in the lineup.

SS: Didi or Gleyber? I believe Didi has the better glove, but - again - this depends on 1B and maybe if we're facing a RH starter. And would we add Tyler Wade as pinch runner?

3B: Urshela.  

Now, the outfield.

RF: Judge. 

CF: Tauchman, Gardy, or Hicks? This is a killer. Gardy is the people's choice. If Tauchman is still hot, how do you bench him? If healed, Hicks would get my nod. He's the best fielder out there.

LF: Maybin, Stanton, Tauchman, Gardy? Yeesh. If healed, Stanton has the highest ceiling. I believe he will return in September. They'll give him plenty of ABs. This is his chance to salvage the year: Return and hit in the playoffs.  

DH: Stanton or Encarnacion, or Voit? Wait a minute... Clint Frazier? Another tossup. But something tells me Stanton and Encarnacion - if they hit in late September - will have the inside track.

Okay, here's my lineup:
LeMahieu 1B
Judge RF
Urshela 3B
Encarnacion DH
Stanton LF

Sanchez C
Torres 2B
Gregorius SS
Hicks CF 

Am I a sucker to play Stanton? And this lineup sits Maybin, Tauchman, Gardy and Voit? Damn, that's just not right.

Now, gulp, the pitching staff. Starters:

Severino, German, Paxton, Tanaka, Happ, Sabathia. 

If Sevy does return, wow... Happ and CC would get booted. Would the Yankees do that to Sabathia? 

Bullpen: El Chapo, Britton, Mean Chad Green, Kahnle, Betances, Ottavino, Holder, Loiasiga, Hale, Cortes. 

This isn't such a problem. A full bullpen - with, say, Betances and Hale - would be a wondrous thing. The concern, of course, is that we see the Bad Betances, who walks lead-off batters and then cannot hold them on base. It's really hard to imagine Betances reaching mid-season form in only six weeks, but once again, it's the case of a guy looking to salvage an entire lost year. You never know.

But here's the reality: Without a tweaked gonad here or there, we've got too many bodies trying to squeeze through the same door. After all the heroics this year, I would hate to see a playoff roster without Voit, Tauchman or Maybin. Damn, that's so wrong. Then again, how could you drop a healthy Stanton or Encarnacion? Wow. This could get weird. 


JM said...

If Stanton shows that he still can't lay off lousy pitches and strikes out 50% or more of the time, sit him.

Tauchman has earned his shot. Maybin, too. Gardy, also.

Hicks? Yes, good fielder, but would we need a .220 bat during the playoffs? Tough one.

DJ, Torres, Didi and Gio are all in. Eddie if he's healthy but not if he's lost the hitting streak he was on. Voit, sure, but can he come back strong?

I'd go with Frazier. He's a guy like Tauchman and DJ. You find a spot for him. But of course, I'm dreaming.

I want an ocean
And some sunscreen lotion
Take me to the beach
With a thousand pretty girls in reach

Parson Tom said...

Yes! I'll take Tauchman and Maybin and Gardy any day over Stanton and Hicks. Too many strikeouts.

JM, don't forget your radio. Baseball in the afternoon is perfect for the beach.

JM said...

Sadly, Tom, I'm in Germany with dinner guests arriving almost exactly at game time.

The Yankees have called up the Pharoah!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...








Local Bargain Jerk said...

Are we writing off any possible return of Jordan Montgomery? I haven't heard anything. Does anyone know the latest poop on Jordan M.?

Anonymous said...

If everyone is healthy...

2B Gleybar
SS Didi
3B Urshala
C Sanchez
RF Judge
CF Hicks
LF Tauchman

DH If the opponent starts LHP Frazier or Voit if Frazier STILL not on team.

vs. RHP Gardner (Stanton never gets off the bench - Not this year. Unless he
came back with abilities that I have yet to see. We're scoring enough runs
without him. Plus, I've seen Gardner be clutch, ditto Voit, ditto Frazier,
ditto Maybin. Not getting a lot of clutch from Stanton.

Doug K.

Anonymous said...

Here is today's tough question...

It appears that shades of 1984 we will have two Yankees vying for the batting title.
That year it was easy to pick, Mattingly over Winfield.

This year it's DJ vs Urshala.

Personally, I'm going to root for DJ (My first "favorite" Yankee since Matsui.) But I hope they push each other right up until the last day and somewhere around .350

Doug K.

HoraceClarke66 said...

ALL-CAPS, I want The General in that spot, but I see your point.

With Stanton and even Hicks, we are fast getting to a point—thank goodness!—where they can be SAT WITHOUT INSULT.

"Aw, gee, what a shame, they were SO close to coming back. Ah, well."

I have every confidence that Stanton will trip getting out of the whirlpool bath and cost himself another 3 weeks.

Oh, and The General should be on first, anchoring the infield. Didi and The Gleyber up the middle are excellent. Hicks is, at least, a terrific fielder, and he does have a clutch gene.

HoraceClarke66 said...

My nightmare: a Stanton-Sanchez-EE 3-4-5. If that ends up being the case, we might as well watch stone-skipping on ESPN.

HoraceClarke66 said...

And Thairo is back!!! Ya-hoo, ya-hey!

I'm calling up my guy right now, and having him haul a couple hundred pharaoh headdresses from the warehouse. Soon, they'll be playing "Walk Like an Egyptian" and "King Tut" between innings!

JM said...

I think someone pointed out that Gio will never have enough ABs to qualify for the batting title. So it's DJ.

Not 100% sure that's the case, but if an IIH commenter said so, it's good enough for me.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Actually, that's WRONG! I know, right, hard to believe, considering the source.

But Gio currently has 356 plate appearances. 502 are required to qualify for the batting title.

That means he needs 146 more over the Yanks' last 41 games, or just under 3.6 a game. Very doable, I would think, though they may want to rest him more down the stretch.

TheWinWarblist said...

Next year we have to go as Thuuu-uh-uh-uh-uh John Sterling Appreciation Society!

Fuck all of George's and Joan's heirs not named Jennifer.

ranger_lp said...

@LBJ...Monty is still in the mix...

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