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LOST WEEKEND The Yanks
Posted By Alex Belth On May 26, 2003 @ 12:55 pm In Bronx Banter | Comments Disabled
The Yanks made like Ray Milland this past weekend and got bombed—swept by the Toronto Blue Jays. Spanked, really. This after the Texas Rangers swept them last weekend in the Bronx. The Bombers have now lost 11 of their last 12 at home, and now trail the first place Red Sox by a game and half. They Jays aren’t an arrogant team, but they were smiling broadly by the end of Sunday.
Who stunk up the place? Who didn’t (Okay, Contreras and Hitchcock were good in relief)? This isn’t just a couple of guys under-achieving, it’s team-wide malaise. The pitching has been weak (Andy Pettitte, Jeff Weaver), the defense stinks (Soriano, Derek Jeter), and the offense is completely M.I.A. (the Yankees have not scored more than 1 run in an inning for 49 straight innings). The Yanks haven’t played this badly since the end of the 2000 season, and you wonder what has to happen to light a fire under their ass.
Joe Torre talked with the team on Saturday, but what these guys need is Paulie O to take batting practice on a water cooler (Zim would work just fine as a fill-in).
It was rainy and cold in New York over the weekend and about the only baseball fans in town who felt halfway decent are Mets fans. Hey, we aren’t the only one’s that suck. Hey, misery loves company.
For their part, Yankee fans have not been dealing with their team’s struggles well. They’ve become so pampered and so spoiled, they don’t know how to handle losing again. Many fans I spoke with are so pissed at the Yanks, they aren’t even watching them. Now, that the Bombers are struggling a bit, some of their faithful fans are treating them like step-children.
I’m not so discouraged by the losing—I realize what goes up must come down, and that eventually the Yankees will go through a period of losing again—but it’s how they are losing. For years if they Yanks were down 3, 4, or even 5 runs in the late innings, you always felt they had a chance of winning. And even if they didn’t win, they’d make it close, put up a fight.
For the past few weeks, when the Yanks are down 5-2 in the 7th, stick a fork in em. They are done.
You know who charges back when they are down late? The Red Sox.
It’s almost 1:00 on Memorial Day, and I was hopeful that today’s game would be called on the count of rain. After asking the fans to sit on their hands through the rain all weekend, you’d think George would give us all a break and play the game tomorrow. Don’t make the fans sit in this slop, man.
But they are holding out. The game has now put pushed back to a 3:00 start. George will be in the house; Clemens has invited everybody under the sun to the Stadium, it’s a national TV game, it’s 300. They are going to try to get the game in. But I think it’s going to back fire on the Yanks. I don’t care if it is the Red Sox—the only team with bad enough Karma to kick the Yankees back to life. They are pushing it. George wants the glory of the big win. It’s a set up.
I bet Rocket pitches good enough to lose—let’s say 7 innings, giving up 2 or 3 runs, and the Yankee O snoozes again, and the Yanks lose.
That’ll give George a chance to make his money, and get good and humiliated enough to finally blow his stack. I mean, that’s what is coming, right? A classic George shit fit. Mt. Saint Steinbrenner is going to erupt any minute now, right? I don’t know if he’ll just pop off, diss his players, his manager, and issue a lot of threats, or if Rick Down or Mel Stott get fired, or what.
I think the Yankees can recover—the season is not over by a long stretch—but the fat man is about ready to sing.
Duck and cover, folks. This season may be just getting started.
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