The New York Yankees finally gave their fans a couple of stress-free performances with blowout victories over the Baltimore Orioles last week … but apparently all that meant was that we’d be tortured again in short order.
Their series win over the Seattle Mariners was awesome, but every single one of those contests featured high-stakes endings. And they blew the prime chance at a sweep on Sunday. Can’t complain with three out of four, though. Take it and move on.
Well, they did move on to another win in their series opener against the Kansas City Royals … but it was really not fun to watch.
The Yankees took five different leads in this one and blew FOUR of them. Jonathan Loaisiga, Chad Green, Zack Britton and Clay Holmes all played prominent roles in that after another quality Jameson Taillon start.
In the end, New York came out on top 8-6 in extra innings (11), but this one saw multiple baserunning gaffes, terrible at-bats, an Aaron Boone ejection, and batting-practice pitching. Not to mention, they put the game-winning runs on base in the bottom of the 11th before securing the victory — one which took nearly FIVE hours.
We should be talking more about Luke Voit’s heroics — you’ll hear more about that soon — but the Yankees managed to spoil TWO of his clutch go-ahead RBI, one of which included a solo homer in the top of the ninth inning.
It’s just really hard to be positive when you see four of the worst at-bats of the game from Giancarlo Stanton (really, more of this against the Royals?), Aaron Judge failing to get a good secondary lead from third base, Brett Gardner getting thrown out at third on a bad decision, and Britton not being able to sit down Nicky Lopez to end the game.
… what was Judge doing there?
And why would Gardner think the Royals would throw home here? There were two outs and Tyler Wade was running on the crack of the bat.
Nobody on this team is safe from looking like they’ve forgotten how to play baseball on a daily basis. And it further goes to show this team lacks leadership and gumption. What’s even worse? It’s evident how important the Anthony Rizzo trade was for this roster and clubhouse. Where would this team be without the former Cubs star? Honestly, probably 10 games out of the AL East.
We’re still waiting for incumbent star Yankees to step up. We’ve seen very little from DJ LeMahieu. We’ve only seen short spurts from Stanton. Judge really hasn’t been that impressive this year either — he’s 71st in MLB with 52 RBI and 23rd with 23 home runs. That’s just not good enough production from your MVP-caliber player.
And the bullpen? Good God. Britton has been an atrocity, still seemingly unable to shake his offseason demons. Green very much feels like he’s unpitchable at this point … hitters just know what’s coming. Aroldis Chapman has been a nightmare outside of his first 20 games of the season.
Is anyone going to step up and break a game completely open more frequently than once a month? Does any reliever outside of Loaisiga want to shut the door without making it a heart-stopping event? Anyone care to play mistake-free baseball multiple times per week? Is that too much to ask?
We get it; we sound like a broken record. But it’s about to be mid-August. All we want is for some of these problems to go away for longer stretches than 5-10 games. And we can’t help but feel that it’s a reflection of leadership … something we’ve been saying this team lacks for quite some time now.
Call this a moral victory if it’s a triumph over a real team — not the 48-63 Royals who sold at the deadline.