Regardless of what the caffeine-slurping statisticians working tirelessly behind the scenes of baseball will have you believe, there is a certain intangible aura that surrounds a World Series-bound ball club. Sometimes it’s difficult to spot. It can live only inside the hallowed walls of a clubhouse — the inside jokes and traditions that fans and press aren’t privy to.
At times, it plays out in front of our eyes during the game’s most exciting moments. It’s those victories in the form of Gatorade showers during the dog days of summer that define a team come September. If you watch close enough, underneath the surface lies something special and exciting that you can tangibly feel. Something you can call yourself a part of.
I’m proud to say at certain moments throughout the last four ultimately uneventful seasons, the New York Yankees have possessed some of the charisma and magic that gives you a glimmer of hope they might be prepared for a memorable postseason run.
In 2017, they shocked the world and almost fought their way past the Houston Astros on the heels of a storybook ALDS, an ALDS they weren’t supposed to win. While 2017 might feel like a century ago, our Baby Bombers are still here, still fighting for another shot at the title.
It wasn’t our year. They’re still young. We’ll be back. It’s hard not to remember the high hopes we had for them, the dreams we dreamt of a new Core Four.
Regardless of what happens this season…the Baby Bombers aren’t so young anymore.
Are the Yankees and Cubs approaching the same timeline?
From the outside looking in, it was hard not to envy what the Chicago Cubs used to have.
Every conceivable attribute of a healthy and successful baseball team you can imagine, the Cubs possessed in 2016. They had the All-Star infield and the manager. They had the fans behind them and the city praying for their success. They were exciting. They were young! The youngest team to win a World Series since 1969, and yet…here we are.
That team doesn’t exist anymore. The only piece of nostalgia left is the current manager David Ross, who presides over a roster full of unfamiliar faces. What happened? How could it have happened so fast? Is one championship something worth settling for?
It takes so long as a franchise to get into the exciting position for the word “dynasty” to become part of common discussion, but what happens when that word slowly disappears from the mouths of fans?
The Yankees are, at this moment, winning baseball games. It is entirely possible this team puts together a respectable second half and heads into the playoffs with a good chance against whoever their competition may be. Is that enough to run this exact same team back out there next year? Can we sit through another morbid and lifeless first half of baseball like the one we just witnessed? A short time ago when this team was battling to keep their heads above .500, did those 2018 and 2019 seasons comfort us as progress?
Contracts are expiring. A decision needs to be made on Luke Voit, Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, Gio Urshela, and Gleyber Torres.
At the trade deadline this year, the Cubs front office said farewell to their beloved players with tears on the lapels of their expensive sport coats, but Chicago baseball still gets played — and regrettable contracts weren’t handed out to their former champions. The Houston Astros have re-invented themselves since their last “championship” and they’re still unfortunately a contender.
Any chance this Aaron Judge-captained ball club was capable of wedging themself into the long list of those great New York Yankees teams left with Didi Gregorius. It’s been a long time since this team has truly felt special, and even longer since we’ve seen the World Series.
Each and every Yankees fan and follower is faced with an important question ahead of them:
At what point do we stop trying to revive something that might not work?