Sep
12

Thoughts following the walk-off loss to the Sox

By

(Jared Wickerham/Getty)

The Yankees keep finding new and imaginative ways to lose these days. Even if they do manage to back into the playoffs, it’s impossible to have faith in them making any noise given how poorly they’ve played in almost every facet of the game in recent weeks. Seriously, what has stood out as a no-doubt positive in the last month? Derek Jeter? That’s pretty much it, nothing else jumps to mind. Things are going so bad right now that the team bus hit a fence and broke a window after the game last night.

1. What in the world could Casey McGehee have done to lose playing time to Steve Pearce? McGehee had gone 7-for-30 with two doubles, a homer — remember he had that other dinger taken away by Rajai Davis in Toronto — and three walks against lefties as a Yankee before they traded for Pearce, who has gone 3-for-15 with a homer and three walks against southpaws since being acquired. We’re splitting hairs here with the super small sample sizes, but McGehee’s track record in the big leagues is so much longer and so much more impressive that I’d much rather have him in the lineup (and batting sixth!) against lefties than Pearce. It’s probably too late now given his ultra-sporadic playing time, but I feel like this was a problem that didn’t need fixin’.

2. An unofficial stat from Moshe, who doesn’t blog anymore but remains near and dear to our hearts (through Twitter)…


As I said, that’s unofficial. He went back and counted it manually, so right or wrong he deserves props for the effort. Anyway, yeah that’s pretty crazy. The Yankees have played so any tight games this season and especially of late — at least more than we’re used to seeing — and things so rarely seem to go their way. Jerry Meals blows a call at first base, Davis climbs walls and robs homers in Toronto, Pedro Ciriaco slaps a single on a curveball three inches off the ground, so on and so forth. I’m not making excuses here, the Yankees create their own bad luck more often than not, but so many of these recent losses have been imminently winnable games. They just can’t seem to get over that hump.

3. This kinda sorta ties into the last point, but in three of the last four series the Yankees have lost games because David Robertson or Rafael Soriano blew them. Soriano gave up the homer to Colby Rasmus against the Blue Jays, then Robertson allowed the go-ahead single to Chris Gimenez in Tampa, the two homers in the series opener in Baltimore, and then the walk-off rally last night. That was his second inning of work and the first two hits were not hard-hit last night, so I don’t want to get on him too much for that. Still though, that’s three losses in the last four series directly attributed to the team’s two core, late-inning relievers. We created the Death By Bullpen tag back during the “cover your eyes, hide the children” bullpen days of early-2007, but it has certainly applied many times this season. Those losses with Soriano and Robertson (or Mariano Rivera) on the mound are always tough to swallow.

Categories : Musings
  • Better off Eddard

    The poor gameplans are on Girardi – Why insist on throwing Mark Reynolds fastball after fastball? Why throw Cyrano anything close to the plate? Why leave Robertson out there to dry in the 9th and not even have anyone else warming up?

    How is this lineup going to beat Dave Price on Friday? They won’t. This was our chance to put some distance between us on the others and they blew it. The only one who didn’t was Jeter who should get MVP just for attempting to carry this sorry bunch of clowns.

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      Cyrano?

      • Virginia Yankee

        Cyrano de Bergerac. You know, he played third base for the Red Sox last night. He’s a heck of a ball player despite that enormous nose.

    • MannyGeee

      ITs a little bigger than that. Sure, you want Girardi to be able to manage to a 1-run lead better than he did, but the better (and more troubling question) is why was there only a 1-run lead when John Lester walked 7 batters?

  • Hall and Nokes

    Seriously, did McGehee grow a hair under his lip or something? I still can’t get over the fact that last year’s lineup featured a Pirates AAAA player batting ahead of a supposed star, and it wasn’t even that big a deal anymore.

  • Frank

    What about Sabathia? He seems to be getting another pass for lackluster performances. This guy has been major disappointment this season, especially the second half. His last 4 starts were all must win games and he failed to deliver every time.

    • Kingslayer

      And let’s not forget that last year during second half he was just as inconsistent!

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Let’s shoot him, then.

        • Darren

          You don’t have to shoot him, just stop treating him with kid gloves and give hime his share of blame. Will all of you kool aid drinkers finally agree that he’s not an ace? At least not this year? or does his 5 or 6 start run still leave you with stars in your eyes?

          • Robinson Tilapia

            I don’t care what someone calls him. Call him an ace, not an ace, whatever. He’s underperformed this season, as have other players on the team. That’s what’s most important.

            If you want to hurl hate at our players for underperforming, go right ahead. That’s not my style. We all know what’s expected of CC, where he’s met it, and where he’s not met it.

            Point fingers, or don’t point fingers. The day where actual consensus as to “what’s wrong with the Yankees” on a blog comment section actually affects the team’s performance is the day any of this actually matters.

            • Jimmy McNulty

              i.e. LEAVE THE YANKEES ALONE!!!!!!!!!

          • Dean Winters

            just stop treating him with kid gloves and give hime his share of blame.

            —————–

            CC came out a few days ago and stated that he’s letting the team down. No one is treating him with kid gloves.

  • tipsie

    I’d like to know the last time this team went 4 weeks without winning consecutive games.

    It’s been reassuring over the past week that each time they’ve been tied (for first), they have come back with a win to regain a one game lead; but I’m beginning to wonder if actually falling into second place is what it will take to wake these guys up.

    To be honest, I didn’t think they were as good as they were playing during the 10 game winning streak in June; but I would never have guessed they could be THIS bad over an eight week period of time.

    I thought that when they “reclaimed” 23 games over .500 (Ichiro 2 HR game vs Boston, Sunday night August 19), the ship was righted for good. Holy cow was I wrong.

    • JLC 776

      Man, that was a great game… Everything felt so good then.

  • Gio

    I’m thinking there’s something wrong with Robertson. He’s been consistently missing his spots (by a lot) since he came off the DL.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Robertson always misses his spots, that’s why his walks are always so high. He’s just made some bad mistakes over the plate lately, specifically in Baltimore.

      • Tim K

        Walks seem to be down this year though – and not a one in his last 14 appearances. Sometimes being a little wild isn’t such a bad thing.

        • MannyGeee

          whos gonna take the walk when they can just wait for the mistake pitch and tattoo it?

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      I can’t imagine that they’d have him out there for 2 innings if there was anything wrong with him.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I blame Eddard for Casey McGeeeheee losing playing time. If he hadn’t bungled Pearce’s name, he wouldn’t have gotten as much free publicity.

    Surprised Robertson was left out for a second inning, but whatever. Robertson throws the pitches, not Girardi.

    We can blame the typical culprits that get blamed, but the infield defense was atrocious last night. You can’t be allowing guys on base on the type of cheap shit that was being hit. Get your act together or start trying on suits for analyst jobs in October. This isn’t the time for this shit.

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      I’d like to get an analyst job in October.

    • Better off Eddard

      Casey McGhee is not the savior here. If I was a Yankee opponent I’d be lining up my LHP. It takes away the bats of Ibanez, Chavez and Ichiro and inserts Andruw Jones, Jayson Nix and Steve Pearce.

      Thankfully, we’re facing RHPs the next two games so we have a chance if Phelpsy and Hughesy can pitch well against an AAA lineup. And why were we letting Pedroia and Ellbury beat us? Another game planning failure from Girardi!

      • Robinson Tilapia

        HOW DARE GIRARDI ALLOW TWO ALL-STAR PLAYERS TO DO WELL?!?!

    • gc

      This whole collapse is squarely on Eddard’s shoulders. Someone with a lot more time than me should go back and look at his posts over the last couple of months to see all the proclamations he made with 100% certainty after each game and how nearly every one of them blew up in his face. He should be permanently banned from this site. He is a JINX on the Yankees universe! A blight, I tell you! Ever since he insisted the division was over months ago, the team has gone downhill. IT’S ALL EDDARD’S FAULT. Begone, Devil!!! You bring destruction to the lives of others! Chaos to a world of order! For the sake of the team and Yankee fans everywhere, move to Siberia and never get an internet connection again. The path of destruction you leave in your wake of ignorant incomprehensibly short-sighted babble has done enough damage already! Think of the CHILDREN!!! It is time to exorcise the demon of Eddard once and for all and restore order to the Yankees universe! The power of Christ compels you!! The power of Christ compels you!! EDDARD MUST GO!!!!!

  • Pat D

    I know why Pearce has played and McGehee has not.

    Duh Innings is somehow influencing Girardi and has probably even convinced him that Pearce is better than Teixeira, too.

    :)

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Why isn’t Carlos McGehee playing? We went and traded for Carl McGehee at the deadline for what? We want to see more Carmen McGehee!

      • Pat D

        Is that Francesa or a typical Francesa caller? Or…gulp…both?

  • Kramerica Industries

    The Tigers are the only other contending team in the AL that I know of that had a stretch where they couldn’t string any wins together, at all, for a solid four-five weeks.

    That was back in May and June.

    Yankees are doing this in August and September. And it is killing their season.

  • Wrecky

    This team has no fight. They are finished. It is now the middle of September so I can officially say it, this team stinks and actually overachieved in June and July. I’m just going to watch the games knowing this team is going nowhere. I wish they were just out of it completely to save us from the last second crushing heartbreak they will inevitably deliver the last week of this season and the ensuing Jayson Stark and ESPN revelry about it…

    • Robinson Tilapia

      You’re entitled to feel however you’d like but, honestly, why even watch if you think there’s no fight there?

      • Wrecky

        I will continue to watch because I am a Yankee fan. That being said, each game has become a heart-wrenching disappointment. I used to watch games to see how the Yanks were going to pull one out, but now I watch wondering how they will blow it. I’m usually not a pessimist, but it is very late in the season and the last two months of play have taken all the optimism out of me. I’m just glad the Red Sox really suck…

  • chilango

    Robbie is not the same pitcher he was last year. Granted, his performance last season would be hard to repeat, he was that good. But, this year he has given up 45 hits (5 HR) in 50.2 innings of work, whereas last year in 66.2 innings he gave up 40 hits (1HR). He gave up 8 earned runs all of last year and 16 so far this year. For some reason, he stoppoed throwing the curve in favor of trying to perfect the cutter, which is kind of stupid since his FB has a ntural cut. Hope he has figured out that there is onñy one Mo.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      You’re right in that it’s hard to repeat what he did last year. It’s still not hard to feel a bit dissapointed with him.

      We’ve been so spoiled by Mo’s consistency that we forget that even the best relievers are pretty inconsistent.

  • Kingslayer

    “The evidence has been piling up for nearly two months, to the point that it is now becoming overwhelming, if not quite beyond a reasonable doubt: The New York Yankees simply may not be good enough to win the AL East this year.” – Wallace Matthews

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I mean, that’s whipping our your dick at the sight of a parade, in some ways. It’s also not that outlandish a thing to say. They may not be healthy enough, and the reinforcements presents may not be good enough to hold up. That’s pretty frigging real at this point.

    • Athenian

      That might be the most exact statement of this team to date. And yet, the fans are reminded nightly – as the article states – to the point of the players embarrassing themselve with the nonsensical “we just got to keep fighting”.

      Seriously, guys, this is fighting? There many things wrong and the uncomfortable part is that you can see the Yankees over reacting during the off season and repeating the same misguided decisions that have put them into this position – namely over paying for declining years is ridiculously large contracts.

      Not one sane person would approve of paying the money that is being paid for the lack of performance to Granderson, Tex, ARod, Swisher, and even Sabathia. The result is an even more below average bench which highlights it talents in the bunting skills of Nix. Bunting skills are the highlight!

    • chilango

      The Yankees got by for awhile with a buttload of homers, surprisingly good performances by platoon guys, three solid starters and an overperforming pen. Then came the injuries, the vanishing middle relief, the Robbie/Soriano hiccups (when a setup guy is 1-7 something is not right), and a continuing tremendous RISPFAIL, which is to be expected when you have guys like Jones, Ibañez, Granderson, Tex and Swisher around. Unfortunately,it’s going to be hard to rebuild with AROD and Tex hanging around until 2017. So we may be seeing this type of crappy play for the forseeable future.

  • Jose M. Vazquez

    Has there ever been a Yankee team as frustrating as this one? I mean , in the 70s nothing was expected. In the 80s as well as the early 90s the same could be said. I was not present for the fadeout of the mid sixties. The last WS I saw was the 61. When I returned in the 70s the team was shambles. But this team, so much was expected that perhaps we were wrong in asking too much of it. In the early season I thought that this may be the last hurrah for this team for a while , and it looks like this will turn out to be correct. And like old soldiers they will fade away.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      “Has there ever been a Yankee team as frustrating as this one?”

      I’m frustrated, but I don’t think I’m markedly more frustrated with this team than I was with some of the teams in the past decade.

      In retrospect, this team is going to have plenty of outs and scapegoats that will make things seem not as bad, if things dont’ wind up going their way. You can start with #42 not being there.

      Even as a youngster, the 80′s were damn frustrating. I was smart enough to know the franchise couldn’t put a pitching staff together to save their life.

    • Jose M. Vazquez

      I was also a very young fan for the late forties teams but never had to worry because the mostly won all the time. The same goes for the fifties.

    • MannyGeee

      The teams from 2005 – 2008 were painstakingly frustrating… I was actually thinking about this during my commute this morning, this team reminds me ALOT of those teams (on the offensive side of the ball, at least). They dont seem to be able to string good ABs together like the teams of the past few seasons have. You almost expect the team to foulnder when there are 2 on and 0 outs. and that sucks.

  • Bruce

    At least Joba seems to be getting his act together.

    • Better off Eddard

      Joba was returning from TJS and just needed time to get back into form but with the over reactionary nature of this forum, he was getting killed just a couple outings into his return. Rest assured, he is back and I believe he should be made the new 8th inning guy as Robertson has lost us 3 games on this road trip.

      • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

        “…and I believe he should be made the new 8th inning guy as Robertson has lost us 3 games on this road trip.”

        Absoluely not. Did you see the 8th inning last night? Or the first two hits he gave up?

        • Robinson Tilapia

          Godfuckingdammit, Clay, he said REST ASSURED Joba is back. That should be it. Game. Set. Match.

          I’d dispatch Secret Service to watch over Joba the next few days.

          • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

            Hahaha. I apologize. I missed that rest assured part. Ef the 8th. Ef #untuck. Give em the closer gig.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

          And it wasn’t even the eighth inning!

      • gc

        Eddard accusing RAB of being over-reactionary. Fucking priceless!

        • JohnnyC

          Reactionary doesn’t mean what you people think it does. It’s specifically a term referencing political extremism, usually ultra-conservatism. A more appropriate word would be reactive, as in “occurring as a result of stress or emotional upset.” Forgive me for interrupting but I find the careless and confused use of he word reactionary endlessly annoying.

      • MannyGeee

        “…but with the over reactionary nature of this forum…”

        ” I believe he should be made the new 8th inning guy as Robertson has lost us 3 games on this road trip”

        Excuse me… Pot, have you met my friend Kettle?

    • Jose M. Vazquez

      I see Joba as the future closer.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    I’m probably as angry as anybody out there about the recent results but I think we haven’t lost anything so far. Sure, the Yankees didn’t perform well but they still could’ve won a good number of games they lost. Sometimes luck just isn’t on your side, sometimes you just don’t get that 2 out RISP-hit that would’ve won the game. And sometimes this happens for quite a while and you lose a bunch of games. It happens.

    Get into the postseason somehow and maybe things turn around and we have a chance to win it all. Stranger things have happened and strange things happen every day in baseball. I still believe in this team!

    • Randy

      You beat me to the punch. I think if they can get into the posteseason they have as good of a chance as anybody else. There are plenty of examples where teams didn’t play well in the final couple of months, backed into the playoffs and then made a deep run. It is frustrating and excruciating to witness, but they are still in a position to make the playoffs despite all the bad things that have happened. I believe they will still make it.

      • Bartolo’s Colon

        i agree about the postseason, i just don’t think they will get there. this is NOT a good team. They were a good team until the all star break. some thing happened after that, a team that plays under 500 for over 2 months is not good. but, if they do somehow get in the playoffs all bets are off.

        to make matters worse, the phillies are totally going to the postseason.

  • Robert

    Cashman miscalculated with this team,Help is 2 years away with position players in Minors.I just can not be feed a steady diet of Russell Martin batting 5th.
    Play Melky Mesa for a change call up Corbin Joeseph and Z. Almonte and give me a reason to watch….
    If the Red Saux are gonna beat our Yankees with there farm system than we should also!!!

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Yeah! Let’s beat the Yankees ourselves!

  • VCR1111

    Pedro Ciriaco is a career .486 hitter against the Yanks. With all the numbers, and stats, and videos we as fans stuff into our already over used brains, there are just some things that are unexplainable. To make matters worse, this Ciriaco clown was in a slump before his batting practice aka games against the Yankees. Last night was just another game that you go to sleep telling yourself, “That was the worse game of the year”. Unfortunately for the Yankees, that phrase has been said an awful lot lately.

  • LarryM., Fl.

    The Yankees are a broken team. The injuries to key personnel have taken there toll from the team. It has left the team in a weaken state so much so the AAA Red Sox’s who look horrible actually have the ability to win in the clutch.

    There I said the word “clutch.” This team even if it survives Sept. and Oct. will not be in any way ready physically and emotionally for the playoffs. I actually watched the game and observed a team and manager making mistake after mistake. Girardi has lost all ability to make moves.

    Why would you start Ibanez over Dickerson. Why would you play Jones over anyone. The bullpen is in shambles because of the rotation. The batting order has no logical order or ability to comeback multiple times from a pitching staff which gives up all leads when ever possible.

    The Yanks are just broken. I will continue to watch and hope for the best. Maybe we can win two in a row and take the series. SAD. We do not deserve to be in the playoffs.

    • Kosmo

      he sat Ichiro early in the game,a .294 career hitter vs. Lester. I think Girardi is managing a little scared right now and in fairness to him doesn´t exactly how to utilize this bumbling cast a characters.

  • Kosmo

    NY is still tied for 1st. 21 games to go. Anything can happen from now until the end of the season.
    I always loved Yogi´s “it ain´t over until its over“ quote.

    Yes they are infuriating to watch at times but they are still not any worse than any other AL team this year.
    Who wins the AL East could come down to the final days of the season. Be prepared for a bumpy ride.

    • Kosmo

      I should have said than any other contending team. Tut mir leid !

      • JohnnyC

        “Entschuldigung” is used to apologize; “excuse me” in English.
        “Tut mir leid” is used to commiserate in situations where the misfortune of the other person is not your fault, as in “I’m sorry to hear that.”

        • Darren

          Kosmo, in German, you got “pwned-ursheisen”

        • Kosmo

          Stier mist !

  • Athenian

    Yes there have been injuries but even when they were healthy, there was no real difference in their performance; well they were closer to a .500 team than below .500.

    Back in April, May and even into June there were games with many errors, base running mistakes, fielding, and the death by RISP. Yet nothing changed over the course of the season, not the approach at the plate, not in shuffling the line up, not even in the approach to winning games. It always came back to a hit, a bloop, and a blast and was coated with more cliches than stupidity that flows from Donald Trump.

    The best thing that can happen to this team is to miss the playoffs AND STICK to reducing payroll. They need to invest into creating a team of balance not just at the MLB level but in the farm system; oh and letting players like Granderson, Swisher, and even Cano walk if their salary demands are unacceptable.

    It is completely frustrating to see a $200 million dollar flop perform every night – like GM trying to convince people that they have solid credible cars. Sad.

    • Kramerica Industries

      They were 57-34 at one point. I hate using injuries as an excuse, because they aren’t. You have to play through them. But when they were healthy, they were discernibly better than a .500 team.

    • Darren

      “Don’t be stupid, you moron. ”

      The best thing for them would be to MAKE the playoffs and WIN the World Series, not to miss the playoffs. Just because they are a very flawed team does not mean you blow it up with no real Plan B in sight. You hope that they can get a little momentum and have an exciting run through the playoffs.

    • dp

      I agree blow up this team. Cano has no value going forward. The Yankees traded away his potential running mates Austin Jackson and Jesus Montero. Reallocate the money saved to veteran pitching and go young on the position player side.

      • DC

        Yeah, “blow up the team”….that ALWAYS works.

  • not that mike

    I hate to be cliche…but big players need to step up and carry the team.

    Cano- in order to justify his reputation and a potential contract- needs to carry this team for a week. The clean-up hitter on the Yankees cannot have 80ish RBI’s and bat .180 with RISP.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    Yeah, so this is why all that feel good stuff was bogus after Sunday’s win. As currently constructed they’re not that good of a team. They’re relying on pieces of shit like Ivan Nova, Phil Hughes, David Phelps, Casey McGhee, Eric Chavez, Jayson Nix, Andruw Jones, Raul Ibanez, and Ichiro Suzuki. Waaaaay too many scrubs to rely on. Not to mention that players like A-Rod, Teixeira, and Granderson are basically scrubs too. There’s five good players on the roster, maybe six with Soriano, That leaves 19 players that are absolutely garbage now.

    • DC

      It doesn’t matter who is on the team or how they play. You would still find something to complain about. You’re like Stuart with better grammar.

  • JLC 776

    This will be unpopular, but I’m kind of sick of the fan base right now. The defeatist attitudes have become fatiguing.

    Let’s spin this shit differently: this team has been an underdog group all year long. Freak injuries have forced replacement and role players to the forefront going all the way back to Spring Training. Yet they still found a way to rise above it by playing like the best TEAM in baseball for an extended period of time. Not a single player was having a career year, but the sum of the parts gave the disparate an eventual double digit lead – all while the injuries kept mounting.

    But playing at that level is rarely sustainable, especially for the gritty group of has-beens that were playing on a daily basis. Doses of bad luck, bad timing, and just general baseball being baseball have now put us in an official chase for October.

    Is it frustrating? Hell, yes! But should we be defeated already, discussing firing everyone in the organization, and generally acting like spoiled shits? Go ahead if you want, but if that’s your attitude, then bugger off. Get to the stadium if you can, scream your head off the way we did in 2001, and carry this team forward. Who knows what happens if the right guys get hot at the right time.

    If you think the team is already done, then go watch football.

  • joe

    I’m kind of tired of hearing injury excuses, because just look at the 2006 team. They had BOTH Matsui and Sheffield out basically the same time for the same amount of time. Both were out from April to September. But they didn’t make excuses then did they? In fact they still were able to score a ton of runs for the season even having missed both of those players. Just like the 2006 team, this team is 2 deep in the rotation yet still the 2006 team didn’t make excuses for not playing well during the period Shelf and Matsui were out longer than even A Rod and Tex combined.

    • dp

      Who cares about 06 anymore. This Yankees team has been old an boring all year. This team should fail as they are poorly constructed and horribly managed by Girardi.

      They have a losing record against winning AL teams. Take out inter league play and they would be in third place right now.

      • joe

        Well I’m with you on that this team should fail as they are poorly constructed. I just pointed out 2006 because I’m tired of people using injuries as explanation when past Yankees teams produced even missing major guys for an extended period of time. I feel your frustration. But honestly I have have been ticked off ever since January when they traded Montero. He may not be doing anything overly great at the plate this season, but I guarantee within 2 years he’ll be hitting over 300. And when that happens (just like I expected with Jackson and Cabrera despite both being terrible and everyone writing them off), the hurt of losing 3-2 games a lot with the inability to get a single with a runner on 2nd will be felt.

        • DC

          Have you ever met stuart? He’s bitter too.

  • RossA

    When Mo went down, I remember writing to friends and saying the Yankees would finish 3rd or 4th. Then they went on that tear in the late spring and early summer months.

    They aren’t hitting. It’s virtually a team-wide slump. Jeter has good numbers, and I am amazed at his season, but even him, it’s alot of bloops and infield hits and so forth. They don’t scare any pitchers….they seem scared of every pitcher.

    If they make the playoffs, I think they’ll get eaten and disposed of quickly.

  • Squints

    Why is Eduardo Nunez on this team if his manager wont let him hit?