It’s not like the Yankees to panic…at least not the Yankees we’ve become accustomed to over the last 10-15 years. That’s why today’s panic at the disco seems so strange and out of place. Spin it any way you want, but putting Phil Hughes on the hill tonight just days after announcing you were going to skip him in favor of Dustin Moseley is a panic move. Joe Girardi acknowledged to reporters that it could be perceived as desperate, but denied it saying, “People are going to look at it the way they want to. We’ve been trying to win games. It’s what we’re trying to do.” Girardi also acknowledged that he worried how his players would see the move saying, “Yes, I’m a little bit concerned how it’s perceived in there (Yankees clubhouse), not necessarily anywhere else,” he said, “but I think they know what we’re trying to do.”
So, are the Yankees no longer above the fray of talk radio? Are the concerns of Louie in the Bronx finally getting to them? There have been questions raised about just how big a collapse it would be if the Yankees not only don’t win the division, but if they also fell out of the Wild Card. But, up until now, you’d never have known that the Yanks were worried about it. Now, they officially are. Granted, the Yankees don’t owe anything to Moseley – 8 starts for the Bombers is probably 8 more than he ever could have dreamed of as a kid growing up in Arkansas. But, regardless of what it means to Moseley, it looks like a duck, and walks like a duck for the Yankees. And now I can’t look forward to all the “Midnight Run” jokes from the beat writers on Twitter.
Where would a collapse of this magnitude rank? Would it compare to the Mets 7 games with 17 to play in ’07? We may never know. But, if the Yanks scramble to avoid just such a fate, and it still happens, I say it winds up MUCH worse than the Mets collapse. I doubt it’ll send the Yanks into a 3-season tailspin like the Mets fail did, but it would still be horrendous.
Will Phil deliver for the Yankees and make all this pre-game hysteria a thing of the past? We’ll see tonight.