Yankees fans can't thank Don Mattingly enough for Blue Jays' offensive meltdown

Once a captain, always a captain.
Toronto Blue Jays v Detroit Tigers
Toronto Blue Jays v Detroit Tigers / Mark Cunningham/GettyImages

Once former Yankees captain Don Mattingly grew a long enough beard to make Monty Burns blush this spring, you had to know some chicanery was up.

When he showed up at Yankee Stadium for the Bombers' home opener and espoused that the word "damage" scared him, as a bench coach and hitting guru, it seemed even clearer that, perhaps, something was afoot.

Maybe Mattingly had gulped the "Hit Strikes Hard" Kool-Aid and decided to revolt against his current employer? Either way, the slugging first baseman's deemphasis of team power -- on a team built around Vlad Guerrero Jr. and, apparently, Daniel Vogelbach -- seemed curious at best. Mattingly's statements fell firmly into the, "Well, Let's See How This Goes" Bucket.

Well ... shall we check in and see how it's going in early June?

Desultory. Seems to be going ... desultory.

Blue Jays fans blaming bench coach Don Mattingly for offensive struggles is Yankees schadenfreude

It's important to note that Guillermo Martinez is the Blue Jays' current hitting coach, whereas Mattingly is the bench coach and "offensive coordinator." Guess that's baseball's newfangled terminology for "guy we fire when the offense is bad," which the Mariners just did to their coordinator Brant Brown.

The hitting coach/coordinator change typically marks the first scapegoat of a beleaguered franchise. After all, it can never be the players' fault. It has to be the man telling them he's scared of damage and, instead, they should do more plinking and plunking. There's no way Vlad Jr. and Bo Bichette have simply regressed. There's no way the Jays' thinned-out pitching depth is shining a light on their lineup's deficiencies after masking problems during the 2022-23 regular seasons. There's no way Daulton Varsho isn't a top-five player.

Then again ... Exhibit B of the evidence is pretty damning.

Remember when the Blue Jays used to do that stuff?

Regardless, as Mattingly's name becomes a dirty word north of the border, allow us to wash Blue Jays fans' mouths out with soap every time they dare to besmirch our captain. He's doing a great job actually. He's doing exactly what we asked of him.

While the Blue Jays languish in last place, Mattingly might need saving. Can the Yankees give him a glorified advisor role and let him return to George's box and tip his cap a few times per summer?

Maybe wait until Vlad and Bo have been sent out of town, then bring him back and hold "Mattingly Day" in the Bronx. It's only right.