Did I miss something?
Weren’t the New York Yankees one of the final four teams playing this year in Major League Baseball? I’m not so sure, the so-called smartest fans in baseball (along with the media) seem to be leading me astray. To be in New York the last five days you would think the Yanks lost 122 games and tied the other 40. I get it, the hitting was historically bad against the Detroit Tigers. To rehash the numbers that have been spouted endlessly recently would be a waste of my time and yours. So now that everyone has started to exhale and maybe taken a couple of sedatives, here are some helpful insights from your favorite baseball blogger to help bring you back to reality.
The Yankees actually went farther in 2012 than they did in 2011.
OOHH, I know, such groundbreaking stuff. But it’s true. You can look it up. They lost the ALDS in 2011 to those (almost) same Tigers in five games. So the Bronx Bombers had a more successful season this year than last and all I hear about is that they just lost 9 out of 10 to the Bridgeport Bluefish. So once all of the fans around baseball (except those from Detroit, St. Louis and San Francisco) quit their snickering and glee from the Yanks’ dreadful ending, there is this cold, hard fact: they would have traded places with Yankee fans in a second. They would have loved to seen their own teams in that exact same spot because that would have meant a successful season. Which brings me to the next point.
The Yankees had the best record in the American League, winning 95 games despite an array of injuries. So now, people want this team dismantled by cutting and trading players as if this was a bad week of Fantasy Football. Folks, you have to maintain excellence over the course of a 162 game regular season just to make it to the postseason. So when you ask not to re-sign Nick Swisher, not pick up Curtis Granderson’s option and trade Alex Rodriguez (because hey that hasn’t been proposed 10,001 times) do you really have an idea what that means? It means that while the playoffs are not a lock if you maintain the status quo, they may become even more remote by blowing up the team because now you are dealing with the unknown. Do you suppose you snap your fingers, and BAM, here comes 100 wins? So you want to dump Russell Martin and his .211 batting average? Find a catcher who has experience handling almost 20 different pitchers in one season and is a rock behind the plate. Go scan the waiver wire and let me know how that works out. Make all those changes and if the team goes .500, then what? Fire Joe Girardi? Trade Derek Jeter? Exhume George Steinbrenner’s body?
2013 is not the year to make whole sale changes to the Yankees. That will happen in 2014 when the self-imposed $189 million dollar cap will begin to take effect. It makes sense to give this group one more shot at getting to the World Series. It won’t be nearly as bad next postseason. Logically speaking, in 2011 it was the ALDS, in 2012, it was the ALCS. So that means in 2013 it will be the World Series. Then again, logic is not a word we would associate with most New York baseball fans.
Follow me on Twitter @ltj41 and covering the Arizona Diamondbacks at http://venomstrikes.com