Sunday, April 11, 2021

As they watch a tired and listless Yankee lineup, John & Suzyn look ready to explode

Midway into yesterday's sad and exhausting loss, John Sterling suddenly latched upon a surgical path forward. 

The Yankees were down 4-0 in the fifth, with Jay Bruce leading off - prompting the Rays' dramatic over-shift, which happens whenever an old school, dead-end, pull hitter comes to bat.

The Master marveled at the open space on the left side of the infield, a veritable pasture, a meadow, a parking lot. Why, if Bruce - cagey veteran that he is - could simply lay one down, he could walk to first, he could literally walk to first. John also noted that, down by four, the Yankees certainly needed a base runner more than a homer. You could feel John's hopes rising - hoping against hope that Bruce could bunt his way to first.

Of course, he didn't. 

Bruce struck out, swinging on a 2-2 pitch. (Reality check: In his 13 year career, he has three sacrifice bunts.) DJ LeMahieu followed suit with a strikeout and, after Aaron Judge singled, Aaron Hicks fanned to christen the inning as a threesome of futility. John didn't mention bunting again. My guess: He won't use the word for a week.

Earlier, he had praised Brett Gardner's double to left, saying it was exactly what the Yankees needed - hitters adapting to the situation, taking a pitch to the opposite field. 

What a concept: Adapting.  

Today, the Death Barge will unveil its latest project, Roughned Odor, who has in his rather dreary career become a poster child for refusal to adapt. Odor is a classic HR/K/W batter - mostly Ks - who was recently jettisoned by Texas because that miserable franchise had simply seen enough of him. 

It's possible that the humiliation of being waived will change Odor, for a week or two, anyway. 

Sometimes, players yearn to prove their old employers wrong, for a week or two, anyway. And in this case, Odor would be basically replacing Bruce, a veteran outfielder who has been forced to play 1B, and who is hitting .111. (10 strikeouts in 27 at bats.)

Every damning assessment of the Yankees must start with this caveat: It's early in the season.

Too early to scream. Too early to throw things. Too early to call for heads to roll.

But it's not too early to wonder... WTF? 

How can a veteran team start a season looking so listless and lifeless? Is there a sparkplug on this roster? Because Mount Sterling is getting ready to blow. 

4 comments:

mik said...

Aaron Boone was asked point blank if Judge was hurt -- see his answer below and see if you can untwist this tasty pretzel...
“I mean, that’s a good question. I don’t know how to answer that, because if I answer yes or no, it’s gonna be conflated a lot of different ways,”

--How can we expect this team to win when their own manager doesn't know if a key player is hurt?

--Holy Cow-- We are in trouble!

Anonymous said...

"Germán optioned after Yankees' shutout loss"

Squash the Bosch!

Out with the Kraut!

HoraceClarke66 said...

Well, I suspect it's more that he's been forbidden to say so. You know, so we have some gigantic strategic edge, with the other team wondering if that guy who is constantly grimacing in pain and pulling up in the outfield really is hurt or not.

JM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.