The New York Yankees are perhaps the most disappointing franchise post-2010. What could I start with? How could the New York front office be content with watching the rival Boston Red Sox win in 2013 and 2018? It’s practically the same every year. It’s excruciating to have high hopes of winning a 28th ring every single year and then proceed to blow it in every way possible.
Let’s start with last week’s loss to the Red Sox. New York put their ace Gerrit Cole on the mound to send the team to the American League Division Series. All signs pointed to New York winning this game. With JD Martinez out of the game, a shaky Boston bullpen and a destructive Giancarlo Stanton, who plays at Fenway Park as if he is playing tee-ball at the park, why wouldn’t New York fans be confident in their team? But let’s not forget, this is the Yankees we’re referencing. This is the same team that signed Jacoby Ellsbury to a $153 million deal and proceeded to see him play far worse than he had in the past.
Let’s talk about Coach Boone for a moment. The hero of the 2003 American League Championship Series and the same player who thought it would be a good idea to play some pickup basketball and essentially ruin his career. The same man Yankees ownership felt would be an excellent fit to manage the Bronx Empire. How did Boone proceed to do as a manager? Boone has achieved little postseason success with not a single World Series appearance on a team that contains superstar Aaron Judge, former MVP Giancarlo Stanton, AL Cy Young contender Gerrit Cole and a wide array of talent. The idea that Boone can even be comfortable with his position amongst Yankees management is absolutely insane. Even worse, all signs are pointing to ownership bringing this excuse of a manager back.
But the team did have some energy at the end of the year and made the playoffs. They also swept the Red Sox on a monstrous performance at Fenway Park late in September. The cherry on top could be seen in New York’s performance against Red Sox Wild Card starter Nathan Eovaldi. The former Yankees pitcher surrendered seven runs to his former club in just two ⅔ innings already this year. Despite owning a lifetime 2.86 ERA before Tuesday’s performance, “Nasty Nate” simply needed to turn heads to send the Red Sox to the ALDS.
Eovaldi proceeded to prove every Yankees fan wrong and pitched an absolute gem in Tuesday’s performance. Other than Stanton, Judge and Rizzo, New York essentially made the right-hander look like a prime Pedro Martinez as the Bronx Bombers walked away with just a single run. Eovaldi got his revenge on his former team in the best possible way. But, let’s look on the bright side; how did Cole do?
The “ace of the Yankees” performed at a level as bad as Yankees legend Andrew Heaney. Boston hit the cover off the ball and made Cole look like he just got called up from Double-A Trenton the day before the game. In just two innings, Cole let shortstop Xander Bogaerts clobber a ball deep to give Boston a two-run lead. Boone was forced to take Cole off the mound after putting Boston in another great position to score more runs. On top of Bogaerts’ moonshot, Kyle Schwarber gave Cole traumatic flashbacks and hit another home run to give the Red Sox another insurance run. What was the cherry on top of Boston’s win? Garrett Whitlock, another former Yankee who was let go in the Rule 5 draft and picked up by Boston, put away New York with no error except for a late Stanton home run.
The team has no one to blame but themselves. Against everything this team has stood for in its time as a franchise, the team needs to go into a rebuild. It is time for New York to evaluate their future with general manager Brian Cashman, as it may be time for a change. An example of the longtime general manager’s failures came in 2014 when $471 million was dished out in free agency. What was the result of these free agency moves? A mere 84-win year for the Bronx Bombers. While I am perfectly fine with the team throwing large amounts of money at the top free agents each year, it may be time to evaluate better options or developing prospects in their farm system, especially when the team has seen superstar Aaron Judge emerge along with pitcher Luis Severino from their farm system.
I can’t stand to watch this team consistently underperform every year. I can’t stand watching the team lose to Boston and the little brother New York Mets, a group that finished fourth place in the N.L. East. With Boston advancing to the ALCS, Tampa Bay winning the division despite a disappointing loss to Boston and Toronto flexing a scary young core of Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr., the A.L. East is one of the scariest divisions in baseball. One of the greatest physicists of all time, Albert Einstein, once said, “The definition of insanity is to repeatedly do the same thing and expect a different outcome.” New York can’t sit stagnantly, live by Einstein’s quote and watch the rest of the league get better while they watch the postseason from Cancún. As a lifelong Yankees fan, I speak for the fans when I say the late great George Steinbrenner would be sick at the sight of disappointment in this team.
As the winningest sports franchise of all time, the World Series drought of this team is baffling and pitiful. It’s time for a change, and if that means rebuilding this team from scratch, I’m perfectly fine with that regardless of the criticism from the media and New York fans. This team does not work together, and if the entire 2021 season did not signify that, then the Wild Card game made it apparent. It’s time for Hal Steinbrenner to make a stand and bring this team back to greatness, starting with a quality manager who can lead this team back to a World Series trophy. If that’s not possible, please sell the team, get someone who can accomplish that task and do all of New York a favor.