Friday, July 23, 2021

The season didn't end last night, but the Yankees' quest for the AL East did

We're not cows, right? If the Jumbotron says, "MOO," we don't "moo." We're thinking fans.

And we have personal limits of self-abuse, right? We do not subject ourselves to methods of enhanced self-interrogation, such as waterboarding or reading the Daily Mail. We are Yankee fans - not a doomsday cult. 

I want that understood. We are not Met fans, Jet fans, Knick fans... once upon a time, we rooted for the marquee team in all of baseball. Under the rules of the Geneva Convention, we do not allow self-torture. 

That said, we are dying here. Hand in the blender. Can somebody turn it off? Eleven days after the worst loss of the season - a horror show ninth against Houston - we topped it last night. You can say the common denominator is Chad Green, but he's not alone. To paraphrase Hillary, it takes a franchise to raise a debacle. It's the trimmings - the botched grounders, the lunging swings, the pitches to the backstop - that turn victories into PTSD flashbacks. Chad Green isn't a closer, that's all. The real question: Why was he out there? 

Nope. I'm not staggering down that path...  No self-torture! That's my motto. They cannot hurt us anymore, because we are already dead. 

So, it's a last-birth-in-the-wild-card season, now. It always was. We just didn't know it. I personally shall spend the next eight days wondering if we're not better off losing. The great fear now is that Cooperstown Cashman, in a desperate quest to keep his job, will make some generationally horrible trades, like the ones that got us here. 

Today, the Yankiverse pulses with rumors that Cashman will drain the farms for a Trevor Story or a Jose Ramirez. Whatever he does, the YES men - that is, the Yankee- owned media - will quickly applaud it as the work of genius, and the team will chase that last birth, the carrot on the stick for middling mediocrity - for teams who don't know enough to tank. 

Last night, the Rays traded for Nelson Cruz. Soon, Boston will activate Chris Sale. The Yankees? We look forward to the return of Nestor Cortez. 

I can't take much more of this. Right now, let's just hope Cashman sticks to the one thing he has historically mastered: Scouring the scrap heaps for talent. Let's direct all our juju towards jamming up his phone, so he cannot make another midsummer, decade-killing blockbuster.  

"Moo?" Fuck that. I say, "Boo." 


Anonymous said...

In the holiday season, Cashman rappels down a building---his only good move.

Celerino Sanchez said...

Whew, I thought these new kids were going to save Cashman's job, but Daniel Boone, Mo Green & the Amazing Kriske came through. I didn't notice in Kriske's bio that his favorite pitchers were Steve Blass, Steve Trout & Rick Ankiel but I guess that was an oversight. It's good to have 2 RP making a combined $30m not pitch in a pivotal game, but then again they suck too!

HoraceClarke66 said...

Ankiel! That's who I was trying to think of yesterday when I wrote about Eisenreich! Thanks, Celerino.

Yeah, quite the team this—and quite the organization. I don't think there's a spleen amongst them.

Love the debacle line, Duque...but yes, that was the official end of your 2021 season.

Anonymous said...

In all this malaise, I don't know if anyone mention this fact.

In what was the most important-if not pivotable- series in 2021, our 28 year-old All-Star catcher did not play. Load management? I guess so.
That led me to think, or at least harken back to another time;
Thurman Munson 28 years old;(1975)- 157 games, 661 PA, 190 hits, 24 2B 3 3B(!), 102 rbi,52K, 45 BB, .318,.795 OPS only 12 HR. [Death Valley pretty much still existed]
Thurman would have tried to hurt any manager that keep him out of a Red Sucks game.
That is why we can truly say A) the current Yankees suck and , B) they don't make Yankees like they used to.

I remain eternally sad at the demise of one of my favorite pastimes.

The Depressed Archangel

Platoni said...

I have tried making baseball and rooting for the Yankees my pastimes basically since I got off the boat (the plane, but...same thing)
I rooted for the Yankees on my first time to the park, in Baltimore, with the local yokels staring daggers.
I signed up my kids to peewee leagues before I learned that a grounder was not just an electrical term.
I ignored the steroid epidemic because watching McGwire and Sosa were launching rockets into space. (BTW, have you noticed how the latter looks like a slightly less-bleached version of Michael Jackson?)

But this shit, which I keep staying awake past 1AM Euro time to be maddened by, is just ruining it for me.

The only bright light is this site, its bitterness is SweetNLo to me.

JM said...

Even without Sanchez, we had them. We had them. That's what hurts. If we were losing 10-0, ok, fine. We lose. But last night. Again.

Green is overused recently, and it shows. Kriske is, as usual, a waste of a roster space. Why the fuck is he even on the major league team?

The truth is, if we had Lasagna or Nestor available, we probably win that game. It wasn't like our big closer failed, as happened a few weeks ago. It wasn't that Britton looks like he needs a stint at Scranton to see if he can work out his rust and whatever other problems he has. We lost because, poor fielding aside, we didn't have any arms to call in to stop the ninth inning bleeding. Or keep it from happening. Same with the tenth.

We've seen that we can live without our best player, Judge. We've seen that Wade may not be the best choice as a fill-in third baseman. We've seen that Green shouldn't be used as a closer, and can't pitch so often without losing his Greenness. We've seen that Stanton is the most overpaid $1.5 million player in baseball. We've seen that the shift is nothing but a bad idea at this point.

And, yes, we've seen that Boone is not much of a field manager. Yet, he persists.

We had them. We can take them. It would be nail-biting, but we could do it.

But not without Lasagna and Nestor. Not if Chapman can't pitch almost every day, like a great closer would. There's too much babying on this team, and as a result, Cole is called upon yet again to be Superman tonight. How he handles the pressure of being surrounded by incompetence, I'll never know.

ZacharyA said...

Chad Green leads all AL relievers in innings pitched, and most of those innings have been high leverage/high pressure. Maybe we need to ease off him just a bit?

I was looking at his early-season workload historically...

Green Total Innings from Opening Day to Fourth of July

2017: 29.0 IP
2018: 41.1 IP
2019: 30.1 IP
2020: 00.0 IP
2021: 43.1 IP

Perhaps not coincidentally, the last time Green was handed such a heavy early workload (2018), he also had a disastrous July (6.75 ERA post-Fourth).

Not sure why Boone didn't just leave Cessa out there. He looked sharp and only threw five pitches in the 8th.

Anonymous said...

JM, I really don't disagree with you at all, but still….
I'm old enough to vividly remember Thurman fighting Red Sucks, and this team has no Thurmans; we have"load management" and just ponder that you ( and I for that matter)are pining for Nestor. Truly, let that marinate.
I do with all sincerity love Nestor. He does all he can and just keeps pitching- not throwing-. I'll take a few more of him please.
I have reserved a place in heaven for him, providing that he does not have some vile mortal sins in his closet.

The Archangel

ZacharyA said...

The Yankees are 50-45 (.526) this year and 86-76 (.531) in their last 162 regular-season games.

$200M doesn't get you what it used to.

13bit said...

One small step for Hal, one giant leap for the Yankiverse.

The closer we get to supreme suckitude, the better off we'll be. We need our bottoming out to be public, dramatic, humiliating and glaringly obvious. It's the only way. We must keep digging.

And as for 210 million smackeroos - you know what? For what Hal is worth and what the team brings in, that NOTHING. CHUMP FUCKING CHANGE. IT'S DISGUSTING THAT THEY KEEP TRYING TO PERPETRATE THE BIG LIE THAT THEY ARE SO GENEROUS AND WILL DO ANYTHING TO WIN. As a percentage of profits, that's dog shit for Hal.

Duque had it ABSOLUTELY CORRECT years ago when he labelled him "Food Stamps Hal." It's a big smoke and mirrors kabuki charade of shit. The emperor's new clothes. You want to win? Spend a little more. Other teams do it, DADDY DID IT, HAL. DADDY DID IT. And therein lies the problem...

Hal needs a good baseball-minded GM and he needs a fucking shrink. OR, he needs to sell the team, but he won't do that. HAL HATES BASEBALL, but he'll hold his nose all the way to the bank and we will be curse with mediocrity for decades.

13bit said...

sorry for the typos, but I am too tired to delete and edit and repost. you get the gist of it.

my fingers are weary from these yankees.

time to head to Bruckner Boulevard.

Anonymous said...

I think the key takeaway from Duque's pitch perfect piece was summed up extremely well by Celerino when he wrote, "Whew!"

As in, they almost had us believing, the front office could make some moves, etc. Almost.

Fortunately last night's debacle showed, once again, that this is a team that needs to be dismantled. (As if we had a Mantle in the first place).

We are freed from the burden of unmet expectations. Huzzah!

Doug K.

ranger_lp said...

Latest roster move...

New York Yankees optioned RHP Brooks Kriske to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.

The mere fact that he wasn't DFA'd is galatically stupefying.

JM said...

He should just be released. Remove the temptation to think he can pitch in the majors.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Great stats, Zach, thanks! Very telling.

And Archie, you're right on about Thurman. From 1972-78, he caught at least 121 games a year, and played in at least 140, and won the 1976 AL MVP.

But wait, it gets better!

From 1950-57, Yogi Berra played in at least 134 games a year, and caught at least 121. From 1950-55, Berra caught—CAUGHT—140, 141, 145, 148, and 149 games in various seasons...and won 3 MVP awards.

There was famously some doubleheader in 1949, when an exhausted, injured Joe DiMaggio had to be carried from the field at the end of the day, after playing both games. He glared at the young Yogi, who had sat out the nightcap, and growled, "I can play both these games and you can't?"

Yogi never sat in a big game again in his life.

Elston Howard, when he finally wrested the catching position out of Yogi's paws, played in 136, 135, and 150 games, 1962-64, and caught 146 in 1946. He won the MVP in 1963.

Jorge Posada played in at least 137 games, 2000-2007, and caught at least 131 each year, including 142 in 2000. In that time he won 5 Silver Slugger awards, and finished as high as 3rd and 6th in the MVP voting.

Sancho can't suck it up, play a couple extra games now, then take a little more time on the bench against the Baltimores and KCs of the world?

Mind you, it's probably not his decision. The masterminds of the front office are making sure it's all by the manual.

Carl J. Weitz said...

Horace ..I knew you didn't mean Eisenreich. He might have barked and twitched but he had a good arm.
The Yankees had a decent pitcher they acquired about 30 plus years ago that had no wildness previously but pulled a Brooks Brisket after being traded . He admitted pitching in NYC caused extreme anxiety. I think it might have been Steve Stone or a contemporary.

Anonymous said...

Steve Trout, Carl. Felt bad for him.