Saturday, September 13, 2008

"Theater Of The Hopeless"

WITH ALL THE rainouts last night forcing doubleheaders today, there are a total of 20 MLB games being played today -- the most in one day since August of 1974. And I hope my Yankees lose both of their games today at Yankee Stadium to the Tampa Bay Rays, all the better to hurt the Boston Red Sox, who come into today trailing by only 2 games. Not that the Yankees need any more reasons to lose this season. Mike Mussina, after tying Cy Young for career strikeouts, gave up a 2-run single to the next batter, and Rays lead 2-0.

Derek Jeter is at that point in his career where almost every day he seems to be tying or passing one or another Yankee legend's record. The other day it was passing Babe Ruth in hits, and with his first hit today he is now within 8 hits of Lou Gehrig for most hits all time at Yankee Stadium. It seems only yesterday me and my dad were agreeing that this skinny kid with the #2 on his back has a chance to be something special.

When the Anaheim Angels of Los Angeles 90210 clinched the AL West with a win over the Yanks in their series finale the other day, it marked the earliest a team had clinched a division title since they went to the divisional alignment for the 1969 season. Yanks, on the other hand, have the AL's 7th best record, and 12 other teams in MLB have better records, which helps to put their lost year in perspective.

More painful perspective: Yanks scored 2 runs or less 46 times this year, compared to 33 in all of 2007. I'm tempted to say after all the number crunching, maybe it all comes down to something as simple as not making up for the loss of Jorge Posada's 2007 production (.338, 20 HRs, 90 RBI), which if spread across a season would make right a lot of offensive woes. Whatever the conclusion, Yankee fans are gonna need a fall guy for the year, and the name Brian Cashman immediately springs to mind and will do just fine.

Now it's 7-0 Rays, and the word forfeit never sounded so reasonable. Forfeit the game, give up the season already. Nothing to play for over the last 10 games at Yankee Stadium. That's pitiful really.

Yanks' radio man John Sterling just called this game "the Yankees' worst of the year" -- as if such a thing were truly quantifiable. Anyway, it seems there's been a "worst game of the year" almost every week this season.

The other day
Tyler Kepner, Yanks' beat writer for The Times, called playing out the rest of the season a "theater of the hopeless." Can't argue with that. We all waited for the hot streak to come, hoped for the run that never came, but unlike even last year, this Yankees team didn't have the collective heart to will themselves to win day after day, and so the long playoff run ends not with a bang but with a whimpering wind through what will soon be not only an empty ballpark but an abandonded one.

The Yanks have only 3 hits today, all by Jeter, against Rays starter James Shields and we're already in the 6th inning. This is their 2008 season in a nutshell, the utter futility. Better the season ends this way, however, than another first-round knockout in the playoffs. That's somehow worse. Let's hit bottom, take stock, reload. All that's left for a Yankees fan this year is rooting agains the Red Sox and rooting against the Mets, and then hoping Jeter gets those 6 more hits for the record. That's what happens in losing seasons: the fans of the team start paying attention to individual records.

3 comments:

Armando said...

I can't wait for next year (I have CC and Sheets thoughts in my future!)...But in all seriousness my wife and I are going next Sunday and sadly its likely the last game ever at Yankee Stadium. Kinda funny how this year has gone and if things end the way they appear we may finish 4th! Yuck! It will be great though to kick the snot out of Baltimore for the final game! We got tickets in the upper tier for less than $200 which wasnt too bad (if anyone else is interested?) http://www.esellout.com/ResultsGeneralAtVenue.aspx?kwds=New+York+Yankees&venid=68
At least Hughes got the call up after the AAA playoffs, it would be a nice way to salvage his season with a couple good appearances heading into the offseason either as a part of Yankees future lure OR in a potential trade! LET'S GO YANKEES!

-Armando

Wardens World said...

How about Ollie Perez from the Mets if we can't get C.C.? I just heard he'll be a free agent next year. He's a lefty arm that would thrive in ... wait a minute! I just realized I don't know the dimensions of the NEW Yankee Stadium. Who knows if there's a short leftfield porch in the new one?

Another question is Joba -- starter or reliever next year? I think I'd go bullpen, but either way he should be a force.

Enjoy the game!

jimithegreek said...

darn spot on!