Yesterday, Brain Cashman addressed his troops. After that, the Yankees fell back to the .500 mark. So after a 16-6 start, with projections of a World Series, the Yankees have lost 15 of their last 22, as of Friday.
They are a team in turmoil and seeking answers. The Yankees are this bad or not able to overcome the injuries to Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, Gio Urshela, and numerous others.
Hey, they weren’t this bad last year when they sustained a record number of injuries to Judge, Stanton, and other key components to the lineup and pitching staff.
And then there is Gary Sanchez, Gleyber Torres, Aaron Hicks. Sanchez, is the question of this truncated 2020 season. Torres, and what happened to the 38 home run production of last year when baseball was played under the normal 162 game schedule?
The mystiques, answers, and what has gone wrong for the 2020 Yankees are difficult to understand. What is easy to know, without seeking a baseball therapist, is the Yankees have minimal time to gain that momentum.
Momentum and a winning streak is needed now that will keep them as the 8th and final AL postseason team. The AL East is all in Tampa Bay. The Blue Jays, Orioles, and Tigers, they are teams that are taking advantage of this unusual schedule.
Teams that were supposed to be a few years away from contention. Instead, the Yankees trail the Blue Jays. The Orioles are right behind them. So are the Tigers and Mariners.
Cashman said,”I wanted to remind them, first and foremost, that I believe in them. I put this club together with my staff, Everybody in that room is here for a reason”
And the manager is doing what he can to guide this sinking ship. Aaron Boone, in another era ,would not have survived this turn for the worst. Tuesday ,that would not have been the GM addressing his team.
The late George Steonbrenner, yes, in that other era, would have made his statement and fired his manager. But, this is a different Steinbrenner regime and more patience with the manager. More confidence with the roster that their GM has assembled.
Okay, in defense of this team, running out of time, there are no scouts submitting those advanced reports. Because baseball is adhering to medical protocols, playing during a global pandemic, scouts are not permitted in the ballparks.
Scouts have always been a backbone of the game, as analytics appear to be more in control. This could be an impact, affecting the Yankees lineup and has them at the bottom of the league in hitting. That goes, also, to the minor league systems that went out the window in 2020, due to the protocols and structure of this 60-game sprint.
Again, no excuse for Sanchez. And the entire lineup with a failure to score runs because of the circumstances. These are supposed to be Major League hitters and it’s not about learning at this point.
It’s about adjustments. The Yankees have not been able to adjust at the plate. Sanchez is at a record pace for strikeouts at this pace, again looking at a 60-game schedule and not 162.
They have also not been able to make adjustments on the mound and the disappointment of Gerrit Cole, a major investment into their ace, has not looked good. The bullpen overall, and closer Aroldis Chapman? They have also imploded.
Heck, last week they put a rookie in the fire. Clarke Schmidt, a top pitching prospect, made his MLB debut out of the bullpen against the Orioles.
“We’ve got to get back to what the New York Yankees are,” said first baseman Luke Voit. HIs bat has also gone cold, and after hitting a good amount of home runs at the start, the ball is not leaving the yard.
Neither is the ball leaving the yard often from this potent Yankees lineup.
Or is it what Voit said, “I feel like teams aren’t really scared of us right now , and it’s kind of a sad thing. We have to step it up.”
But time is running short on Voit and the Yankees. At this rate, there is time to be that last spot as one of those AL teams. It will go down to the wire. It won’t be easy.
And it won’t be easy for MLB and the networks if the Yankees are not playing deep into October. That projected Yankees-Dodgers World Series?
Yeah, the Dodgers are looking good. The Yankees are not.
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