Let’s paint the picture for you. The New York Yankees are going for the sweep during a Thursday matinee on the road against the Detroit Tigers. Their lineup is pretty much at full strength.
Jordan Montgomery delivered a quality start. He became the first member of the rotation to throw six innings or more, and he allowed just one earned run thanks to Joey Gallo’s bad (yes, BAD) defense.
The only problem? The offense has yet to score. The Yankees have just four hits through seven innings. But then came the eight. Hope! Against a bad team! We can do it!
Josh Donaldson led off with a pinch-hit double. Gleyber Torres reached on an infield single and moved Locastro, who was pinch-running for Donaldson, to third. No outs! The Yankees best hitter, Aaron Hicks, is up!
But he popped out on a 1-0 count. Awful. OK! One out. Runners on the corners. Aaron Judge is up! We’ll take anything. Fine. We’ll take a walk. Fine. Bases loaded for Anthony Rizzo. Tigers make a pitching change.
Weak grounder to the pitcher. Runner thrown out at home. Two outs. Giancarlo Stanton is the final hope … and a groundout to first base on the FIRST PITCH ends the inning. Absolutely unbelievable.
The Yankees cannot hit with runners in scoring position and it’s sad
Coming into this Thursday game, the team was already hitting .178 with a .574 OPS with runners in scoring position. We can tack on another 1-for-7 effort to that after eight innings of play. And in the bottom half of the frame, the Tigers scored two runs to pretty much finish the job.
Some things never change. In 2021, the Yankees hit just .237 with a .698 OPS with runners in scoring position. It gets even worse when there are two outs and runners in scoring position this time around, too. A .095 average and .431 OPS with FIVE RBI. FIVE! In 51 plate appearances!
We’ve got nothing else. At a loss for words. The competition has gotten weaker and the Yankees still can’t deliver. The same problems persist and the groans won’t go away until a sliver of change suggests otherwise.
Anyway, want to remember the next level of hell? The Tigers loaded the bases with no outs in the ninth, then dribbled a double play ball to the pitcher. Hope! With two outs, up came Miguel Cabrera with a lefty, Austin Meadows, on deck. With the lefty Lucas Luetge on the mound, intentionally walking him was a clear and obvious sad reality.
But don’t worry! Austin Meadows hit a looper with 12 exit velocity (estimated) to score the runs regardless, and the entire baseball world took a victory lap, calling the bloop “karma” for Aaron Boone trying to win a baseball game.
We know the Yankees are the Evil Empire, but they’re now being penalized for making sound decisions.
In come the red-hot Cleveland Guardians to the Bronx now. They’re tearing the cover off the ball. Three runs per game won’t get the job done there, sorry to say.