Aug
18

The Stretch Drive edition of ‘Evaluation the Schedule’

By

The Yankees have 38 games to play and a five-game gap separating them from an October berth. If the Yankees are going to make the postseason, they’re going to have it earn it. Over their last 38 games, the Bombers play the Orioles six times, the Tigers once and the Mariners three times. Their other 28 games are all against teams with winning records (Toronto, Boston, Tampa Bay, Los Angeles, Chicago) , and 19 of those are against teams currently holding playoff spots. Just 16 of these final 38 games are at home, and the Yanks start September with a road trip to, in this order, Detroit, Tampa, Seattle and Anaheim. That brutal trip will make or break the season.

Categories : Analysis, Asides

26 Comments»

  1. Cam says:

    Hey, Brian at Depressed Fan has been ripping on Girardi pretty hard the last couple of weeks. Just wondering if you guys were going to be doing your own analysis of the General in the upcoming weeks (I’m positive you will), and also if you’ve read anything Brian’s said. He brings up some good points, but I still beleive that Girardi was the best option.

    • steve (different one) says:

      sorry, i don’t put a lot of stock in the “revolving lineup has killed the yankees” theory.

      the fact of the matter is that the yankees have a lot of brittle, older players. these guys can’t play the field every day. it’s amazing how this was a GIVEN last year with Matsui, Damon and Giambi, but now that they have better numbers, all of those health issues have been forgotten by the fans.

      now, that doesn’t mean Girardi hasn’t run out a few head scratchers. he has. just like Torre did. the Sexson nonsense was particularly bad, and Cashman was forced to intervene.

      but i don’t buy in the nonsense that simply not having the same lineup everyday is a big reason for the team’s struggles.

      i think our memories are faulty about how much previous Yankee teams did the same thing. you can look it up on BB-Ref. those teams changed their lineups 3-5 times/week also.

      criticize Girardi for the legitimate things. don’t just swallow every red herring that Abraham feeds you on his personal crusade against Girardi.

      • Haggs says:

        Girardi’s lineup management has been brutal.

        He wasn’t resting guys, he was SITTING guys based on which hand the opposing pitcher threw the ball with. That said, it’s not his fault that a bunch of the hitters are having subpar years, esp with men on base.

        I’m very interested to see what he does with Matsui. If Hideki looks healthy, Gardner should sit. But something tells me he won’t. Hideki will play at the expense of Damon or Nady, and there will be unrest at RAB and elswhere on the interweb.

        • Pinko says:

          Nady will be the right-handed platoon at first base. Matsui can only DH.

          • Haggs says:

            Hmmm….

            First of all, while Nady has played first before, I don’t know where you’re getting that from. If this was the Yanks plan I suspect we would have heard about it by now.

            Second of all, any benefit gained by adding Matsui to the lineup is removed by subtracting Nady or Giambi from it.

            Gardner played well this weekend, but Johnny D. in CF is the way to go if Matsui looks good. The Yanks would then have a lineup with Cano in the 8th spot.

            Damon has 40 games of CF in him.

            • steve (different one) says:

              He wasn’t resting guys, he was SITTING guys based on which hand the opposing pitcher threw the ball with.

              and how do we know he wasn’t just using those days as the day to rest those guys?

              i completely concede that it got out of hand, but if you have a guy like Giambi that DEFINITELY needs about 1 day off per week, why not match it up on the day there is a lefty on the hill?

              that was my point.

              these guys CAN’T play everyday.

              the only time i objected to the sitting of Giambi or Damon was really in the last week or two, with Sexson (and obviously Christian).

              but people (Abraham, etc.) have been complaining since April.

              that was my point.

              • Haggs says:

                He did it with Matsui early in the year (I think he sat him two days in a row), and he’s done it with Giambi (he also got two days in a row recently) and to a lesser extent Damon all year long. And since Randy Johnson is longer 30 years old and pitching for the Mariners, there never was a vaild reason for it. All of the Yankee left handed batters hit left handed pitching well.

                And the point has been made many times, but Girardi could have used the “DH” spot to rest players. He had a nice formula going through the Texas series, where Betemit was used to give each guy in the infield a day at DH. That I liked. But after Texas he went right back to his crappy lineups.

                Girardi and Eiland have done a nice job with the pitching staff, esp the bullpen, but Joe G. has botched what should be the easier task, which is managing the everyday lineup.

  2. radnom says:

    There are 6 games left against Boston and we are 5 games back.

    This team has let me down too many times to really get my hopes up quite yet, but this shit is far from over people.

  3. Rob says:

    The current playoffs streak began when the 95 team finished with a 27-7 run.

  4. Old Ranger says:

    Hate it when you point out the difficulty of our schedule! Oh well, we will know very soon if we are worth the play-offs or not.
    With all that has gone on this year, it would be nice to make the POs, but with this team, it may be…out in the 1st round again. Don’t get me wrong, they have the talent to make a run at the WS ring but, they find ways to lose. 27/09?

  5. JRVJ says:

    IMO, the Yanks are out unless they go on (at least) a 10 game winning streak (if we start counting as of today, they’d need at least a 12 game winning streak, to include the current 2 game winning streak) AND/OR there is a MASSIVE collapse by at least TWO of their rivals for the WC, one in the Central and one in the East.

    • Old Ranger says:

      We know the other teams won’t just roll over for us, so we’ll have to go out and whip them like a red headed step child. 27-7 run in ’95, make it 33-5 in ’08 and that might be enough to make the POs’. I like that! 27/09?

    • steve (different one) says:

      the Yankees were 4 games out on September 10th, 2005. they are 5 games out on August 18th in 2008.

      will they make it? probably not. the schedule isn’t really in their favor.

      but they don’t HAVE to go on a 10 game win streak. they just need to shave off a game a week and play well head to head with Boston.

      • Old Ranger says:

        Granted!
        I would still like to demolish the opposition though. In fact, I’d love it…just to see what the pundents would write about. They would go out of their minds. 27/09?

  6. Randy says:

    they have a shot. boston has pitched terribly over the last week and a half. if the offense can start to get rolling then i think they can do it. all those teams have flaws and i think it helps that we get to play some of these teams head to head. you obviously have a chance to gain more ground that way.

  7. Randy says:

    plus, we have seen many times how quickly things can change late in the season. all we have to do is look at those bums from queens to remember that.

  8. pete says:

    no matter what happens, we’d need at least joba back if we wanted to go anywhere in the playoffs, and we’ll need to find ways to win until we get some good pitching back (that, of course, is dangerously assuming that pavano and/or hughes could qualify as “good pitching”)

    • radnom says:

      Pavano, Hughes and Joba.

      Thats a lot of pitching to add for the stretch run. Lets hope its not too late.

      • Randy says:

        it definitely is. but i think the issue is the offense. hopefully, matsui can come back and help out with RISP. if we hit, we have a great chance.

        • radnom says:

          Agreed. This lineup should not be 200 runs behind last year.

          • steve (different one) says:

            if Matsui comes back and leads the Yankees to the playoffs, would he win the MVP?

            isn’t that why Morneau won? b/c the Twins struggled for a few months until he got hot. thus making him the most “valuable”.

            pretty silly, huh?

            • radnom says:

              He was the only one who had comparable stats to Jeter that year I felt. I honestly wasn’t too upset he won it. They were pretty close, and yeah I think you can give it to a guy for carrying a team down the stretch run, as long as overall he had a top year as well.

              That being said, some of my Twins friend fans claimed Mauer was the MVP of the team that year and was much more important to them down the stretch. I don’t really pay that close attention to them so I dunno, but I think that was a pretty general feeling among their fan base.

  9. mustang says:

    “September with a road trip to, in this order, Detroit, Tampa, Seattle and Anaheim. That brutal trip will make or break the season.”

    Agree. By that time they should have everyone back and be at full strength. They probably would need to go 6-4 minimum depending on how far back they are. It’s not impossible, but a very tall order.
    I just get this feeling that they are going to do something amazing, but I really have no facts to back it up. I just can’t see the old lady closing down with a meaningless game in September, but maybe it’s just me hoping.

  10. Rayblay says:

    Who came up with the idea to have them fly from Tampa to Seattle? That’s borderline inhumane ;)

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