For those who tuned in to Friday night's New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox matchup, it was more of the same. The Yankees go down early, they fail to fight back, they get walked all over, and it's on to the next likely loss.
Fans have been ripping this team for quite a while, but no stretch of criticism has been more valid than that of the last few months. This is, truthfully, the worst the Yankees have played with this much talent in ... maybe a decade. And the trend has been slowly brewing.
Something has felt rotten with this roster/core dating back to 2020. The 2019 ALCS exit was a heartbreaker, and that set the table for largely lifeless baseball for four straight seasons now. There aren't enough boisterous personalities on this roster to shift the energy or spin the narrative with the media. It's just all boilerplate platitudes over and over and over again that inspire no confidence and leave the door open for more questions and criticism.
If you've watched the Yankees religiously over the last four seasons, you'd probably agree that the overall vibes are terribly off. The body language is poor. The players are hypnotized into saying the same things over and over in postgame interviews. There's still a tremendous lack of urgency both on and off the field, from the front office to the manager to the players.
And now we might know that for sure. Because Anthony Volpe, a 22-year-old rookie, pretty much told us everything we've suspected for years after Friday night's sad, sad 8-3 loss to the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium.
Anthony Volpe's depressing quote after loss to Red Sox sums up Yankees' problems
Then you have Aaron Boone responding like this when asked what's currently missing with the sliding Yankees: "I'll let you guys define that."
You want the media to define that, skip? Well, ok! Here you go! Volpe did it for you and now this will be clipped, retweeted, and hopefully nailed to the entrance of the clubhouse. Because apparently our guess is as good as the manager's, whose finger is supposed to be on the pulse every minute.
But don't worry, the Yankees, who keep losing every single night and are a below .500 team definitely have "the guys, the fight and the work ethic." Except ... they definitely don't have the guys or the fight. Maybe the work ethic, but we don't know that for sure.
If the 22-year-old kid is going to be the only honest one, then that sums up everything wrong with the Yankees. And it validates the concerns fans have had for quite some time now -- something intangible has been eroding this team's ability to get over the hump, or, rather, even meet expectations.
The lone silver lining? Maybe Volpe, who's considered to be a franchise cornerstone, can help start the dire turnaround this team needs from the mental/chemistry side of things if he's mature beyond his years to understand how badly it's holding the Yankees back.