We’ve seen it before. We will absolutely see it again. Some also-ran at the dish or on the mound who the rest of the league is able to handle with ease buzz-sawing the New York Yankees in crucial moments.
More often than not, these men wear Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays jerseys — and then Boston fans have the audacity to complain about Gio Urshela’s “breakout” being unearned. The absolute audacity.
With the lockout firmly in place (most likely through January and beyond), the time is ripe to crunch the numbers, analyze the splits, and then absolutely tear your hair out wandering around the room in pre-anger about these players popping off unexpectedly (and also completely expectedly).
Those are the breaks, right? Well, they shouldn’t be. But they are.
Once these three emerge as Yankee Killers — oh, and believe us, they will! — they’ll join the hallowed halls including:
- Bill Selby, who once hit a walk-off grand slam against Mariano Rivera
- Marco Scutaro, who got Rivera constantly with the Oakland A’s, Toronto Blue Jays, and (duh!) Boston Red Sox
- Bill Mueller (screw you, dude)
- Matt Joyce
- Tony Kemp
- Danny Jansen
- José Iglesias
- Randal Grichuk
- And, of course, the worst player of them all, Francisco Lindor
Frankly, we can’t wait for their induction into CoopersFrown. Bring these losers on!
These 3 random players will kill the New York Yankees in 2022.
3. Kevin Plawecki
Kevin already did quite well at this task with a small sample size in 2021. Now, let’s see what he can do with a fuller slate of games! Or, let’s not. Either way.
Last season, Plawecki — the former Mets and Indians backup turned Red Sox backstop — hit .287 on the season in part-time duty, which is more than respectable for an ancillary part of the offense. Kyle Higashioka, the Yankees’ backup, didn’t come anywhere close to matching that production, and he wasn’t even half-bad!
Against the Yankees, though? Plawecki mashed, hitting .313 in 16 at-bats (four starts, seven games) with a stupid small sample size .951 OPS. Delightful.
In even worse news for the Bombers, it seems like current Sox starter Christian Vázquez’s time with the team might be nearing an end. Vázquez backslid significantly at the dish last year, and is entering the final season of a four-year, $20.3 million contract. Before the break in action, Boston tried to add Jacob Stallings in a trade, which surely would’ve led to Vázquez’s non-tender if a deal hadn’t fallen through.
At this point, if the Sox cut costs with their incumbent, it probably won’t be because of a flashy new import; they’ll likely just roll with a platoon of Plawecki and rookie Connor Wong, acquired in the Mookie Betts trade. If that goes down, look for Plawecki to double that number of starts against the Yankees, while also doubling that OPS to an impossible 1.800.