Tuesday, June 1, 2021

From HoraceClarke66: Koyaanisqatsi


(Seen in a backyard in Cold Spring, New York, this afternoon.) 

 I think at this point—and we’re only at the start of June!—we really have said everything that needs to be said about why your New York Yankees stink, and why they won’t get better anytime soon.

 Hey, I don’t disagree with any of it.

 —Our hitting stinks. No question. Today marks 9 games in 12 that our boys have failed to score as many as 3 runs in a game, the first time that’s happened since the exciting days of 1971.

 —Our fielding stinks. Yep.

 —Our pitching is starting to stink, as Brain’s makeshift staff starts to fall apart. Sadly, it seems to be so.

 —This team has little fire or spirit, and seems distracted and uninvolved.

 —Our manager stinks. Our general manager stinks. Our owner seems most concerned about founding an international soccer empire. All too true.

 —Stanton stinks. Judge stinks. LeMahieu stinks. Sanchez stinks to high heaven. Torres is a riddle. Frazier is an enigma. Andujar is a mystery. Right on all counts.

—The trouble is our player development. The trouble is that no one takes a chance on our young kids. The trouble is that we don’t have enough young kids. The trouble is that everyone gets hurt and no one gets better.

 —The trouble is that Brain Cashman relies too much on the analytics. That’s true.

 —The trouble is that Brain Cashman doesn’t understand analytics. Hey, both things can be true!

 But there is, I think, much more going on.

 Back in 1982, there was a documentary called Koyaanisqatsi—subsequently hailed as “the first in the qatsi trilogy!” 

 I never saw it, I think mostly because it was advertised as a wordless, 86-minute, “tone poem,” complete with a musical score by Philip Glass—all words that make me want to run in the other direction. Some friends described it as “a good pot movie,” but I didn’t have any good pot, so I gave it a miss.

 But I digress.

 Point is, koyaanisqatsi reportedly means “life out of balance” in Hopi.  (I can’t say for sure, not speaking any Hopi, and don’t ask me about my Navajo, either.)

 But I always liked that phrase:  Life out of balance.

 I think that’s what’s happened to all of baseball, in a nutshell.  There has to be some good explanation for why so many Yankees are playing so badly. But it’s not just us. All around the major leagues, on every team, so many players are hurt, and so many are playing so far below their past performances.

 I could quote you statistics until the cows come home, but all you have to do is look at any Yankees game—or any major-league game. It just stinks.

 Sure, if Brian Cashman were a brighter human being, we could be much more like the Tampa Bay Rays. This is a good thing?

 I don’t want to watch a Yankees team that plays like the Rays. I don’t want to watch this sort of computerized, lifeless, de-heroicized baseball.

 I’m not sure how it happened. Was it the juice? Was it all the time in the weight rooms?

 I dunno. But somehow, all of a sudden, all the hitters could hit the ball out 400-feet, one-handed. Then all of a sudden, all the pitchers could throw 100-mph, all the time. Then all of a sudden, everyone was on the disabled list.

 Which came first? Who knows? Who cares?

 But this can’t go on. Batters can’t go on swinging like this without constantly injuring themselves. Pitchers can’t go on throwing like this for more than 5-6 innings—and without constantly injuring themselves.

 Our favorite sport is out of balance. And unless its entire culture changes, it’s not going to get any better—not even the Yankees.

 Koyaanisqatsi. Those Hopi knew what they were talking about. 


ranger_lp said...

Rumor has it that Chris Gittens will be promoted soon...

Anonymous said...

Yeah, out of balance, absolutely. An all right hand hitting team. An all slugging team. A team that is top heavy with huge behemoths. Giant pitchers, giant hitters. All of them injury magnets. A team that has gotten old in a tremendous hurry. A team that refuses to take a chance on or promote any of its young players, until they're old and no good.

And the surprising thing is that a lot of other teams are doing the same kinds of things with all right handed lineups, all sluggers, all giant behemoths. But hell, nobody can do it better than us. We're going to win the race to the bottom this year. And we'll draft another behemoth, made out of paper mache and toothpicks.

The Hammer of God

Scottish Yankee fan said...

They should play this over the tannoy every time a Yankee comes up t bat with the bases loaded and no outs.

It is what I hear playing in my head anyway as they hit into the inevitable double play or worse


Rufus T. Firefly said...

Don't know if this is an omen, but driving through the mountains today, the car in front of me had NH vanity plates.

NY 27

I think the Juju gods were telling me something. Like -- get used to it. For a while.

Joe of AZ said...

Can we finally added the obvious over the last decade the Yankees just don't have a good development system.... And Boone can't manage worth for shit...he managed to destroy this "young" team for the last 3 yrs

CG11 said...

Aaron Judge is hitting .300/.395/.556 (.951 OPS/166 wRC+) on the season.

He is hitting .389/.500/.611 (1.111 OPS/209 wRC+) with runners in scoring position.

I get that he's pressing right now, but please leave him out of your diatribes. Don't compare him to the rest of these bums.

ranger_lp said...

Here's a stat I just heard...

Yanks have a minus WAR at first base...

Yanks have a minus WAR at Left Field...

Yanks have a minus WAR at Center Field...

Even if you don't believe in the WAR stat...it looks awful...

Mustang said...

Perfect, Scottish Yankee Fan.

Kevin said...

Great movie, btw. Straight up, or on the stoned.

TheWinWarblist said...

Ranger, you don't have to hate on the WAR stat (b or f as you prefer) to know that Yankees have sucked at all those positions. You are seeing it in real time. The Master and Suzyn are beside themselves at the awful hitting. Dreadful, dreadful. A Yankee team that can't hit, can't even make contact. The Sky will burn; the Sea will run red with Red Sox.

Anonymous said...

What is so unbelievable about the WAR stat is that one guy who sucks might have a .20 WAR and the best player in baseball might have a 6.5 WAR. So you're telling me that the best player in baseball only wins 6.3 games more than the guy with the .20? If you watch the games, there is a much, much greater difference than that. In fact, it is night and day b/w a guy who sucks and someone regarded as the best player.

In the same way, they're telling us that our piss poor play at 1B has only lost 1 more game than the "average" 1B? That's crazy. If our 1B had just produced a little bit, like an "average" 1B, we'd easily have won 4-5 more games by this point. Same with CF and LF. It's easily the difference b/w third place and probably the best record in baseball to this point.

It seems to me that the WAR stat, at best, only confirms what you already know. That our LF, CF, and 1B have been veritable black holes in our lineup. So what use is a stat that, at best, only confirms what you already know and, at worst, totally distorts reality?

The Hammer of God

EDB said...

Why can't this go on? Genius Cashman and his crew listen to some nebbish sitting by his computer. Instead of telling the players to make contact. To quote The Genius. "I will take a three run homer anytime." Let's add zero base running intellect, poor fielding and A TOTAL LACK OF CLUTCH!

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