Friday, May 7, 2021

After yesterday, it's hard to gin up "Yankee team of destiny" hopes, but at least we learned a lesson

We had 'em - I mean we had 'em! - just survive the eighth, tack on a run, unleash El Chapo, cue The Chairman, and wake up in the city that never sleeps, I mean, we fukking had 'em!  Three-game sweep, six-game win streak, three coming against the stumbling Nats, leapfrog Toronto by Sunday, king of the hill, top of the heeeep... WE GODDAMM HAD 'EM!

Yeah. We had them, until we didn't. 

Today, make no mistake: We don't have them. 

I'm not talking about Houston. Fuck the Astros. I'm talking about the juju gods. I'm talking about the mystical, fantastical, hallucinatory pervs who occupy our minds like bad song lyrics, lowlife deities with nothing better to do than fix sporting events and make honest Yankee fans miserable. 

Yesterday, we suffered the most deflating and paralyzing home run - by fukking Jose Altuve, of all people - since, well, the last home run by Altuve. 

Ashes to Ashes, Altuve to Altuve... 

In between, nearly 600,000 Americans have died, the democratic system was attacked, A-Rod and J-Lo united and dissolved, and there we were - back at square one, with that simpering little cheat high-fiving his teammates at home plate. 

Here we are, as if nothing has changed. 

Not only did we blow the game, we squandered:

1. Another terrific outing by Gerrit Cole. What must this guy do, pitch complete games?

2. A baserunning adventure for the ages by Gleyber Torres, who stole second, third and home on one play. I've seen a lot of things in my life, Suzyn, but never that...

3.  Injuries to Aaron Hicks and Gio Urshela. Naturally, it came after Hicks went three-for-three. 

4. A wild, jubilant, roaring, unified fan base. 

For a moment, let us ponder No. 4. 

Today, we sit at the most polarized political standoff since Appomattox. Not to minimize the deaths, but one of the worst parts of the pandemic was the shutdown of sports, which stole our spirit and our joy. For months now, the Yankiverse has been a volcano spewing anger and frustration. But this week, something happened. This week - against Houston, the proven cheaters - we had no cause to boo Yankee underachievers. We faced a common enemy - a real one, not just something conjured by those who push our buttons - and we came together, and by God, it was magnificent! For three games, we were uplifted, we were together, and it made me a believer and - dammit, WE FUKKING HAD THEM... until we didn't.

Now and then, life brings moments so deflating that you wonder why you bothered to care. The horseshit under the tree? It does not mean a pony in the yard. That good Samaritan on the road? He has ulterior motives. That prime time truth-teller? He's a TV phony. Live long enough, and someone will break your heart. The key is to get up in the morning, check the standings, and tell yourself, "It's Cory Kluber today, and he's back!"

We had them, and we lost 'em. For a moment, I was ready to believe. I was seeing destiny in the '21 Yankees. Now, I'll take a baby step backwards. I touched the electric fence and got a shock. But at least I didn't piss on it. It's a long way to September 30. But we learned yesterday that the juju gods are bastards, and they are not our friends. Boston remains in first. They've gotten cozy with the juju gods. At least, we know better. We learned a lesson. You don't have them... until you have them. 

84 comments:

Der Kaiser said...

I've been thinking today about the McBroom conundrum. He really does seem to be a surefire jinx. I'm sure we're suffering from selective memory, there may have been some occasion in the past where he was mentioned and the Yankees went on to complete the sweep. But the crushing disappointments, like blown saves, are the ones that stay emblazoned in our memories. I think we can all agree that this is not working. Even when he plays for another team, the very invocation of his image seems to enrage the powers that Juju.

I wouldn't like to see him dropped entirely. It's a great name, with solid, old-fashioned meme potential. He reminds me of any number of frustrating players, who show great natural ability and a Florialian ceiling, even a good attitude and work ethic - but somehow fail to translate these talents into good results. The Kyle Farnsworth of memes, as it were. At a certain point, we can't keep running him out there like Juju Joe Torres.

I think what he needs is a change of position. He really ought to be used in a different role: specifically, when another team threatens to sweep the Yankees. At that point, his image can be called upon to prevent a sweep and save a shred of Yankee dignity. A talisman to deflate and deflect overconfident opponents. I would at least like to see him given a couple of chances in these situations to see what he can do. It might take him a little while to adjust to his new position, but I'm sure this team will give him no shortage of opportunities.

Moving forward, we will of course need a new sweep mascot, assuming of course that the very mention of the Yankees possibly sweeping a (good) opponent is not the true source of the jinx. If the experienced Juju wizards determine that it is safe to proceed with a sweep mascot, does anyone have any suggestions for a McBroom replacement? The best I can find after very cursorily searching baseball-reference is Jerry Sweeps, with a recorded 56 at bats in the low levels of the 1973 Phillies farm and no known connection to the Yankees. Not exactly a Bondsian presence in our mojo roster.

Or there's Bob Brush, with 2 recorded at bats for the 1907 Boston Doves. The talent pool at this position is very shallow.

If we're willing to go multilingual, there's Jeremy Kehrt (from the German verb "kehren", to sweep). This sort of approach might help to disguise some of the inherent hubris of calling for a sweep, but the name isn't very evocative in English and I think the Juju gods can probably speak German and would see right through the ploy.

Rolando "Roomba" Roomes? I'm really stretching here. McBroom replacement suggestions, please!

el duque said...

This is the post of the day.

I think you cracked it wide open, Der. I HAVE been leaning on McBroom far too heavily, and in critical situations. I'm like Torre abusing Scott Proctor.

If we can turn it around, using McBroom in reverse, who knows?

TheWinWarblist said...

Every loss is a Big Yankee Loss

Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside said...

The problem with McBroom is that a McAnything is not the genuine article. McMansion? Not a real mansion. McDonalds? Not a real Donald, in fact a Kroc. Just give us a real broom and we’ll get the job done.

TheWinWarblist said...

I'll be drinking through tonight's debacle.

Pocono Steve said...

Forgive the off-topic post, but why is it that Frazier is under "pressure" from Andjuar's recent AAA performance and not Hicks? Is it that crazy to imagine moving Red Thunder to CF if it is indeed the plan to play Andujar in left?

https://www.nj.com/yankees/2021/05/how-yankees-miguel-andujar-could-be-putting-pressure-on-clint-frazier.html

JM said...

Steve, I think moving Frazier to center is impossible. He's a left fielder, to my mind.

el duque said...

Frazier has the speed and range to play CF, but I truly believe he would be a threat to Judge and whomever is in left. There would be an inevitable collision, and people would die.

Carl J. Weitz said...

Der Kaiser....How about Kenny Swab?

Kenny Swab
Positions: Catcher and Relief Pitcher

Bats: Right • Throws: Right

6-2, 215lb (188cm, 97kg)

Born: August 20, 1988 (Age: 32-260d) in Winston-Salem, NC us

Draft: Drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 48th round of the 2009 MLB June Amateur Draft from Young Harris College (Young Harris, GA), the Atlanta Braves in the 35th round of the 2010 MLB June Amateur Draft from University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA) and the Kansas City Royals in the 21st round of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft from University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA).

High School: East Forsyth HS (Kernersville, NC)

Schools: University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA), Young Harris College (Young Harris, GA)

Full Name: Kenneth Thomas Swab

Anonymous said...

That was a bad loss, a very bad loss. The fucking dwarf strikes again, on his very birthday no less. It was much, much worse than getting belted 10-0.

No one has mentioned it, but that was another one that our resident moron, Booney, let get away. With some help from our arson squad bullpen, which really put on a clinic of how to blow a winnable game. I had a bad premonition as soon as he brought in Chad Green. For some reason, I wouldn't have used Chad Green last night. I could feel it. He was going to blow it. Then, when Green was struggling, Booney just leaves Green in there until ... KA-BOOM. Since Green was struggling, why would you let him face the dwarf in that situation? I don't get it. It felt just like the playoff losses to the Tampons and the ASS-stros. Booney never learns.

And as well as Cole pitched, he really made two big mistakes. The first home run, you could excuse it. Everybody gives up home runs, especially if you're a strike throwing machine. But the second homer was a problem. He had to keep it in the ball park there. 3-1 lead is a lot different than a 3-2 lead.

The Hammer of God

ranger_lp said...

@Pocono...Everybody else has played out of position...why not Frazier and AnDUjar?

Local Bargain Jerk said...


I was at that game yesterday. If it weren't for the outcome, particularly Altuve's home run, it would have been one of the best days of my life: Perfect weather, good start by Cole, ASTONISHING BASERUNNING BY TORRES, nice to be at a game after a year of indoor living, being waved into one of the premium indoor YS clubs to buy our beer by the guard out front because "no one's in there and, hey, those servers need to earn money, too", etc.

We also went to "the bar" in the Bronx beforehand and were welcomed personally by the owner -- and his father -- as though we were conquering heroes returning from a long trip abroad.

It was a magic day, all except for the outcome.

Alphonso said...

Chad Green should have known Altuve would sit on his fastball.

Chad Green should have known Altuve was a cheat.

Chad Green should have put one into his teeth.

HoraceClarke66 said...

LOVE Florialian ceiling, Kaiser.

To me, the real fault yesterday was Green walking a .183 hitter to start the inning. No excuse for that, period. And then Justin Wilson started the ninth doing the same thing, with the same batter. Awful.

It comes down to the usual (mis)measure of strengths and weaknesses on a Brian Cashman. You CAN NOT play a major-league game with a 3-man bench (that is really a 2-man bench). And if you are going to try such a thing, you'd better have increased your strength greatly somewhere else. Your bullpen better be lights out.

But it wasn't. It never is under Brain. A weakness is never compensated for with a strength, just another weakness.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Another thing: leg cramps???

This is the epitome of the Yankees' bizarre notions of fitness. HTF does a major-league player get leg cramps running to first base? I thought for sure that Hicks must have pulled a hammy or some such.

But no. It was leg cramps. And not so bad that he couldn't stay in the game.

This is like having a 60-year-old in the game. "Well, you know, he wasn't hydrating sufficiently..."

If Hicks gets to second on that play, as he should have, it's potentially a whole different inning—and the ninth is potentially a whole different inning.

Leg cramps. I'm surprised he didn't say he had an ouchie.

Carl J. Weitz said...

Horace...perhaps dehydration. It's a common cause of cramps. But there's no cure for a rag arm and poor hitting skills.

ranger_lp said...

Roster moves...

AnDUjar comes up...Abreu goes down. Urshela probably not starting tonight.

ranger_lp said...

@Hoss...what the f is good about pitching metrics when first batters get walked?

ranger_lp said...

And why isn't Hicks drinking enough water? Is he too old? Does he have an enlarged prostate and would have to pee after every batter while in the field? We need a doctor to chime in...Winnie...?

Yankee Daddy Roger said...

Why is Frazier taken out for defense when he is due up the bottom of the inning? Petty thing, I suppose. If anyone should be taken out for defense, it's Hicks. Balls drop in front of him and even John and Suzyn are wondering about his "jumps". And when he finally gets several hits, he is too exhausted to play the next day. How is this guy considered a "plus" defender. At least Frazier lays out for a line drive to the outfield and catches it. When was the last time Hicks laid out for anything other than the MRI machine? I am so down on Hicks right now that I suspect him of tipping off pitches to the Astros.

Grumpy Old Granddaddy Yankee Roger

Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside said...

“ When was the last time Hicks laid out for anything other than the MRI machine?”

LOL

Joe Formerlyof Brooklyn said...


The obvious alternative, when we play Houston, is to let Altuve KEEP his freaking little chest buzzer -- but to give the activation button to Sanchez.

The guy (ICS) has got to be good for SOMETHING, don't he?

Also -- did Gleyber steal 2B yesterday? I thought he ran there on an up-the-middle infield single, THEN continued to round the other 2 bases. Am I now seeing things, too? (besides hearing things)....

Kevin said...

Dehydration? In THAT weather? I spent my misspent youth in Miami. My friends and I would play sand lot football or any sport for three to sometimes six hours, hammer and tongs. Nobody ever got heat stroke, cramps, or the heartbreak of athletes' foot. Ever. I was sixteen before anyone even thought to bring a water bottle. Something is very strange in sports with all this cramping. Perhaps it's too much creatinine, or could it be the needle and the damage done? Do you fellow old-timers remember many pros in ANY sport, or in neighborhood games having cramps as a problem? IMHO, something stinks.



Anonymous said...

@Kevin Yeah, very good point. I don't consider myself an old-timer just yet, but I do remember playing ball in the hottest heat of summer, late June to early July. This would be for half a day at a time, like 11:00 to 3 or 4 o'clock. Never did I get a cramp. Never saw anyone else get a cramp, either. Nobody even carried a water bottle in those days. What the hell, are we crossing a desert or something? After one particularly long afternoon, I was pretty exhausted when I came home and I weighed myself on a scale and saw that I'd sweated out more than ten lbs. But I probably could've played another hour or two without any water. If there was a water fountain in the park, that was always a big attraction. But most of the time, the places where we went, there were no fountains.

I do think that just about every professional athlete these days is taking some kind of PED. In the Olympics, they say you can tell which ones are not juicing. They're the ones who come in last. And the PEDs also probably cause a lot of injuries and health problems as well.

I remember hearing in the news about a young hockey player who died suddenly. Not from PEDs, but from his own blood. He had been saving up his own blood and then, before a game, he would inject his own blood into himself. This would presumably help with stamina, but I guess his heart couldn't handle the strain.

The Hammer of God

DickAllen1964 said...

The only complaints about cramps I can recall came from the female population of my youth.

DickAllen1964 said...

Somebody had to say it

DickAllen1964 said...

Now that I’ve given it some additional thought, I might be tempted to cast all sorts of unkind allusions about the state of Hicks testosterone levels.

DickAllen1964 said...

Or, as Bill Parcells once remarked about a soft player, “She’s coming along nicely.”

Carl J. Weitz said...

I wouldn't doubt it might be PED-related cramping. A telltale sign is chronic muscular/joint issues. (see Rodriguez, A and Stanton, G. and a ton of other MLB players). A common misconception is that dehydration only occurs in hot weather. This is not true. And I do remember getting cramps playing every sport as a kid. Not severe and not constant. Perhaps from dehydration but most likely overexertion and not stretching pre-activity. In later years I was particularly prone to cramps after a few hours of aggressive skiing.

As far as Hicks is concerned, I hope his cramps are permanent.

Kevin said...

I don't ever remember hearing about cramps in sports until the middle eighties/ nineties. And some highs school kids started dropping dead in games and practices. And I know for a fact that there was a lot of juicers at that point in amateur sports. Naaaah, can't be. Just a regression to the norm.

JM said...

We have Miggy in the lineup. Playing first.

Has he been getting any time there? Or is this another "anyone can play first?"

I guess he hasn't played third in too long. If he had, DJ could've been at first.

Jesus save us from Boone.

DickAllen1964 said...


AND HICKS BATTING FIFTH?!?!

WTF?!?!?

Kevin said...

Last night I went a little crazy on baseball-reference.com. I started looking at the season by season years of hitters and pitchers. Really strange how many pitchers had long careers throwing 250 plus innings, and how many hitters played in 150 plus games, for years. They didn't have the benefits of having a Verducci, new imaging machines, specialized surgeons, trainers, glute machines, massage and hot stone therapy, or hitting the gym 365. Now the "intelligentsia" in the coaching staffs fret that players need more pampering because they are TOO RESTED from only playing a half year in 2020!!!!!!!!! Yet the players and the play of baseball is supposedly better because we have more THEORIES and better means of collating data. They must have all graduated from the Robert McNamara School of Management.....

Rufus T. Firefly said...

LBJ,

Wish I was there with you.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

At the bar, I mean.

Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside said...

John is predicting baseball again. John, you can’t do that!!!

Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside said...

Shit, now they’re gonna play Sanchez for a month.

DickAllen1964 said...

This is just the home run Sanchez needs to get him going...

TheWinWarblist said...

Yeah. Going to the all you can eat buffet.

Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside said...

Dick, are baiting me? Or are you baiting everyone?

Rufus T. Firefly said...

I'm ok with the red headed step-child being our every day centerfielder after that catch.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

He's a master at that.

Sorry, too easy.

DickAllen1964 said...

Bear baiting, Rufus. Bear baiting.

DickAllen1964 said...

Sorry Beauregard

DickAllen1964 said...

Rufus, THAT was cheap.

But I enjoyed it.

TheWinWarblist said...

We like a little cheap around here. Just not in the Yankee ownership.

TheWinWarblist said...

Once again: I say we all get together on Sept 4th at The Stadium. Orioles. 1PM start.

TheWinWarblist said...

1PM baseball start. I'll start drinking with breakfast.

TheWinWarblist said...

Corbin should be a Yankee. Fuck Hal.

Anonymous said...

Couldn't agree more, Warblist.

Pocono Steve said...

Is this a two-run-maximum game, I wonder?

TheWinWarblist said...

Anon, I'm glad you agree with drinking at breakfast.

Pocono Steve said...

That was me, Warblist. I just didn't fill out the form right. Oh well. Bottoms up!

Rufus T. Firefly said...

I'm all for drinking at breakfast with this group of huckleberries. Twice a year max, per my liver consultant.

And Dick, I said it was too easy. And anyone here knows I'm cheap, except for tipping.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

I just thought of this one:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVUGCdTVpug

Thank you for making my Friday evening even more enjoyable.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Le Machine!

TheWinWarblist said...

Let's see if Boone puts in Wilson to see if he he can shake of last night. Or figure some things out. Or the sun is gonna come up tomorrow. Or whatever other imbecilities rattle about in Boone's limited crabbed head.

TheWinWarblist said...

Oh look. It's the new guy. Who sucks. Who has had a career bWAR of -0.1. That's -0.0167 WAR per year. But, hey, it's not like we gave up anything of value ... oh. Wait.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

If you WAR three times, it will beckon stat baby. Careful!

And as far as being careful, Sept. 4 is Labor Day weekend. Might be tough for me to navigate the holiday traffic and find a hotel room.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

..."say WAR three times"

Same thing after a martini or two.

And the new guy did ok, Despite a fucked up name.

TheWinWarblist said...

HOW ABOUT: Mariners on August 7th or Twins on August 21st.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Is that Turd Ferguson pitching for the Senators?

or do my glasses need cleaning?

TheWinWarblist said...

OR: Indians on Sept 18.

Ken of Brooklyn said...

Winnie, count me in for either Aug 7th or 21st, whatever the powers that be decide,,,

Ken of Brooklyn said...

And those same nose bleed seats would be preferred, it was wonderful having the place to ourselves!

TheWinWarblist said...

Who organized the 2019 outing? Because I shall nudge and agitate, but I'm no good at the actual organizing.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

I'm good with any date, but would prefer not Labor Day weekend.

Isolated seats is also preferred, since I don't want to be infected except by these knuckleheads. Well not by anyone. Plus I'm inoculated.

I'll go Labor Day if Fonzie shows up. I'll even buy him a $48 bourbon (plus tip, you need that 'great' service).

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Winnie, speaking out of turn, as usual:

LBJ and 13Bit did ALL of the heavy lifting. I'll repeat my offer of paying for seats for whomever does that this year. Plus first round (after I arrive, I don't get up early) at the designated watering hole gathering place.

Plus AnDUjar is disappointing me, as is the china doll.

Ken of Brooklyn said...

Winnie, Bitty was the mastermind who expertly orchestrated the 2019 outing,,,,

Ken of Brooklyn said...

YES, correction, LBJ and Bitty

Pocono Steve said...

Nice defense this inning.

TheWinWarblist said...

My dear sweet Bitty? You out there? LBJ? Hello??

Also, wow, the Yanks are sucking it this inning.

ranger_lp said...

Game…set…match

Rufus T. Firefly said...

another fucked up friday night watching the Booners.

TheWinWarblist said...

Wow. Just fucking wow. Bitty is right. Don't start thinking these Yankees don't suck.

ranger_lp said...

Johnny Lasagna had nothing tonight…

Ken of Brooklyn said...

I second that emotion Bitty, this team suuuuucks! Goodnight Irene,,,,

Rufus T. Firefly said...

It's the curse of McBroom.

We need to not bring him out until AFTER the fact. And then, not very often.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Wow! an out. How UNUSUAL!

Pocono Steve said...

I'm sure this clown car of .100 hitters has a rally in it somewhere, right?

ranger_lp said...

This is embarrassing…

Rufus T. Firefly said...

The good news is, due to my EtOH consumption, I won't remember too much of tonight's non-game.

Well, except Winnie is now the designated cat-herder for a summer outing. Or at least the carbuncle instigating it. Thanks either way.

in appreciation"

Fuck you Booner. Fuck you HAL, the IBM of owners.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Went to have dinner with friends, and missed that entire epic.

Nice dinner, nice friends. Awful game, from what it sounds like.

Five whole hits, two errors, wretched relief pitching. Again. Yeah, I agree: don't let them make you think they don't suck.

Leinstery said...

This team is so fucking bad. Even the games they win is due to the other team out stinking them.