Monday, October 3, 2016
The Yankees knew their chances of making the postseason were over before this last series began.
Still, there was some finality in seeing the Orioles clinch a spot in the wild-card game — the one the Yankees had craved — when they fell to Baltimore in a season-ending 5-2 loss Sunday in The Bronx.
“You work so hard to get into the playoffs and make a run at a championship,” Joe Girardi said. “When you don’t, it’s a hard pill to swallow.”
It now has been nearly four years since they won a postseason game, with just a wild-card loss to the Astros last season to put on their postseason résumé since being swept in the 2012 ALCS by the Tigers.
Before Girardi managed the last game of the Yankees’ season with just one year remaining on his contract, he was asked about his job security heading into 2017.
“I never worry about it,” Girardi said. “I don’t worry about it.”
Another season like this one might change that.
They finished the year 84-78, the fourth straight season in which they have won 87 games or fewer. In the previous 17, they never won fewer than 87. The 84 victories matched the lowest win total for a full season since 1992.
Despite the final record and the way the season ended, I am more hopeful about this team’s future than I was over the last couple of years. The starting pitching is likely going to be a problem that needs addressing, and Brian Cashman’s track record in trading for starting pitching scares me, but other than that I’m excited about the potential lineup we may see out there by the end of 2017.
I don’t expect the team to be a strong contender next year, but I think we’ll see some potential progress towards a 2018 team that can be a good one.
This offseason’s free agent class stinks, aside from a few relievers I guess. I’d prefer the Yankees avoid it if possible, although I’d be ok with signing Aroldis Chapman since he wouldn’t cost them a draft pick.
Sunday, October 2, 2016
This game is pretty much meaningless, but it’d be nice to end the season with a win.
Friday, September 30, 2016
1. Adam Jones (R) CF (.269/.314/.440, 1.1 bWAR)
2. Hyun Soo Kim (L) LF (.307/.385/.429, 0.8 bWAR)
3. Manny Machado (R) 3B (.296/.346/.535, 6.7 bWAR)
4. Mark Trumbo (R) DH (.252/.313/.528, 1.4 bWAR)
5. Matt Wieters (S) C (.243/.302/.399, 1.5 bWAR)
6. Chris Davis (L) 1B (.219/.330/.460, 3.0 bWAR)
7. J.J. Hardy (R) SS (.273/.313/.415, 2.3 bWAR)
8. Jonathan Schoop (R) 2B (.263/.294/.445, 1.7 bWAR)
9. Michael Bourn (L) RF (.260/.306/.370, 0.0 bWAR)
Lineup Total: (.263/.321/.456, 18.5 bWAR
1. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF (.262/.321/.374, 2.6 bWAR)
2. Chase Headley (S) 3B (.249/.326/.379, 2.3 bWAR)
3. Gary Sanchez (R) C (.303/.378/.672, 2.8 bWAR)
4. Brian McCann (L) DH (.238/.333/.405, 0.8 bWAR)
5. Mark Teixeira (S) 1B (.205/.295/.365, -0.5 bWAR)
6. Didi Gregorius (L) SS (.275/.304/.448, 2.2 bWAR)
7. Aaron Hicks (S) RF (.218/.277/.338, -0.2 bWAR)
8. Mason Williams (L) LF (.348/.375/.391, 0.1 bWAR)
9. Ronald Torreyes (R) 2B (.257/.301/.382, 0.3 bWAR)
Lineup Total: (.250/.316/.407, 10.4 bWAR
On the evening that the Yankees’ playoff hopes met their end, CC Sabathia completed his season on a strong note, striking out eight over 7 1/3 efficient frames in a 5-1 victory to complete a three-game sweep of the Red Sox on Thursday night at Yankee Stadium.
Starlin Castro, Jacoby Ellsbury and Aaron Hicks had run-scoring doubles for the Yankees (83-76), who were mathematically eliminated from the race for the second American League Wild Card by the Orioles’ 4-0 win over the Blue Jays in Toronto.
Eliminated after Game #158 was a lot longer than I expected it to occur back in late July. Heck, a lot longer than I expected it to occur back before this Red Sox series began.
So good for them. And good for CC to end the year on a good note. Let’s see if they can’t at least take the Orioles out of the playoffs with them! It’s amazing that despite beating up on each other, the AL East still has a good chance at sending three teams to the playoffs. Unbalanced schedules can be tough sometimes.
Thursday, September 29, 2016
1. Aaron Hill (R) 3B (.266/.336/.384, 1.4 bWAR)
2. Andrew Benintendi (L) LF (.309/.371/.500, 0.6 bWAR)
3. Xander Bogaerts (R) SS (.295/.356/.442, 3.3 bWAR)
4. David Ortiz (L) DH (.316/.401/.622, 4.9 bWAR)
5. Chris Young (R) RF (.270/.350/.500, 0.8 bWAR)
6. Jackie Bradley (L) CF (.272/.354/.496, 5.6 bWAR)
7. Ryan Hanigan (R) C (.167/.227/.235, -0.8 bWAR)
8. Travis Shaw (L) 1B (.244/.308/.424, 2.4 bWAR)
9. Deven Marrero (R) 2B (.100/.250/.100, 0.0 bWAR)
Lineup Total: (.276/.349/.471, 18.2 bWAR)
1. Brett Gardner (L) LF (.263/.353/.364, 3.3 bWAR)
2. Jacoby Ellsbury (L) CF (.260/.317/.370, 2.4 bWAR)
3. Gary Sanchez (R) DH (.311/.387/.689, 2.9 bWAR)
4. Starlin Castro (R) 2B (.271/.301/.434, 1.2 bWAR)
5. Didi Gregorius (L) SS (.277/.306/.451, 2.2 bWAR)
6. Chase Headley (S) 3B (.250/.324/.380, 2.2 bWAR)
7. Brian McCann (L) C (.237/.332/.405, 0.7 bWAR)
8. Aaron Hicks (S) RF (.214/.274/.332, -0.3 bWAR)
9. Tyler Austin (R) 1B (.230/.278/.432, -0.2 bWAR)
Lineup Total: (.259/.321/.411, 14.4 bWAR)
I’m hoping CC can get his ERA under 4 in what is likely going to be his last start of the season. But I wouldn’t bet on it happening.
A quick survey of the Yankees’ clubhouse — a small sample, admittedly — revealed that no one was familiar with the perhaps apocryphal tale from Russian history of Rasputin, the spiritual adviser to Czar Nicholas II, whose rivals fed him poisoned wine, shot him several times and then tossed him into an icy river, which he tried to claw his way out of before finally dying.
“Who?” the rookie Tyler Austin asked.
“Never heard of him,” said a smiling Adam Warren, who has a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina, but in business administration.
The Yankees entered Wednesday needing one more day of Rasputin-like survival instincts to keep alive their playoff hopes, which hovered somewhere between microscopic and nonexistent.
After stirring victories the previous two nights, the Yankees mustered another when — down to the final out to stay mathematically alive — Mark Teixeira blasted a game-ending grand slam to keep the Yankees relevant for another day with a 5-3 victory over the Boston Red Sox.
The Yankees, trailing by three runs with one out to go, knew a loss would eliminate them after the Baltimore Orioles staged a ninth-inning rally of their own moments earlier, coming from behind to beat the Toronto Blue Jays.
The Yankees really don’t have a chance at the wild card at this point, but at least they denied a Boston celebration on the Yankees’ field. Good for Teixeira, who I was certain was going to make an out there.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
Tyler Austin’s late home run delayed a potential Red Sox celebration while keeping his club alive in the playoff chase for at least one more evening, as the rookie’s two-run shot lifted the Yankees to a 6-4 victory on Tuesday at Yankee Stadium.
Austin helped snap Boston’s 11-game winning streak with an opposite-field blast in the seventh inning off David Price, who surrendered six runs and once again continued to have difficulty with the Bombers’ batting order.
“He’s an unbelievable pitcher, and I happened to put a good swing on a ball tonight. Not taking anything else away than that,” Austin said.
I like that they don’t even list the scenario where the Yankees could still make the playoffs, as it would literally involve, like, three other teams losing every game while the Yankees won all of their games.
Anyhow, the Yankees now clinched that they will at least finish the season without a losing record. One more win in their final five games and they will have a winning record for their 24th consecutive season, which is astonishing, even more so considering that they traded away two of their three All-Stars this season, as well as their dominant closer, Aroldis Chapman (plus a decent enough starting pitcher in Ivan Nova). So good for them.
Gary Sanchez continued his awesome rookie season with his twentieth home run. Didi Gregorious ALSO hit his 20th home run. Gregorius and Starlin Castro are the only two Yankee middle infielders to ever hit 20 home runs or more in the same season. That’‘s impressive.
And, of course, I can’t forget to mention the excellent day that Tyler Austin had at the plate, 3-3 including a go-ahead home run in the seventh inning off of David Price (It is always fun when the Yankees hit David Price well).
Tuesday, September 27, 2016
In a game marred by two early benches-clearing incidents, the Yankees scored five runs in the ninth inning—three coming on homers by Mark Teixeira and Aaron Hicks—and defeated the Blue Jays, 7-5, on Monday night at Rogers Centre to win the finale of the four-game series.
The loss cut the Blue Jays’ lead for the first American League Wild Card to one game over the idle Orioles, who begin a crucial three-game series Tuesday in Toronto. The Blue Jays are in a solid position with six games left, as they are three games up for a Wild Card spot.
The Yankees, meanwhile, are five games behind the O’s for the second Wild Card spot, with an elimination number of two.
One more win and they at least don’t have a losing season. That’s something.
Anyhow, what a cool win, if just to see Teix shouting “Blown save!” at Jason Grilli after tying the game in the ninth inning with a home run.
Also, how good has Tommy Layne been for the Yankees? I love that the Red Sox dumped him for seemingly no good reason. He’s been excellent. And it wasn’t like he was bad in Boston, either!
Monday, September 26, 2016
ven when things look like they’re about to go right for the Yankees, they haven’t been ending that way.
New York lost for the fourth consecutive time on Sunday afternoon at Rogers Centre, 4-3, with its reliable duo of Dellin Betances and Tyler Clippard unable to hang onto a late one-run lead.
The outing cost the Yankees more than just the game, as New York’s Wild Card elimination number dropped to two as it sits 5 1/2 games back of the Orioles for the second American League Wild Card with seven games remaining.
If they actually had a shot, that loss would have been brutal. As it was, it was more annoying than anything.
I’m really doubting whether they can pull out even two wins in these last seven games of the season to just get to 81 wins, let alone the three wins they need to get to a winning record this season.