Monday, July 02, 2007

Top Ten Reasons The Yankees Missed the Playoffs in 2007

I know, I know, premature. But it's not looking too good right now, and I guess I should preface the title with "If they miss the playoffs, here's why." But I'm in an optimistic mood right now, so let's go with the flow.

(10) Relying on Pavano: Carl Pavano has had a total of one good year in his career, and that came in 2004 as a member of the Marlins. Since joining the Yankees in '05, he's been perhaps the worst signing for Old York this century. As a Yankee, he's won a grand total of five games. Yet Ca$hman was talking about Pavano coming back and having a big year in '07, probably to get some of the $39 million worth. They could have traded him and gotten a better pitcher but kept Carl, and relied on him to be an ace. Ha. He's on the shelf, and may never throw another pitch as a Yankee.

(9) Dropoffs for Melky and Cano: In 2006, Melky Cabrera batted .280, with a .360 OBP. In 2007, he's hitting .259 with a .320 OBP. In 2006, Robinson Cano batted .342, nearly won the AL batting title, and had an OPS of .890. In 2007, Cano is hitting .265 and has an OPS of .701. Had these guys maintained their '06 form, who knows. But all those extra outs add up.

(8) As Manny wrote a few weeks ago, once you get past the regulars, who do you have? Miguel Cairo, Kevin Thompson, Wil Nieves ... a joke. Granted, in the AL the bench is not as important as in the NL, but you figure that there will be injuries, there will be doubleheaders where you want to rest a regular, and Ca$hman was terrible in not acquiring any bench help. And that's killed them.

(7) Ringo's Arm: The guy can't throw anyone out anymore, it's psyching out the pitchers and giving the opponents a lot of extra bases.

(6) Johnny Damon's Injuries: The guy's been a bust in 2007, mostly because he's been playing injured, and refuses to go on the DL! So he wastes a roster spot, has terrible power for a DH, and is slow in the outfield. Had the guy taken a couple of weeks off in early May, perhaps he'd come back and do better.

(5) Charlie Brown and the Yankee Bullpen: This was finally the year we'd all been waiting for - the year he became just another pitcher. Horrible in April, decent in May, mediocre in June... and the team gave him very few save opportunities, but that's because the rest of the pen couldn't hold leads! Lefties are hitting over .300 against Mike Myers, Vizcaino was a bust, Farnsworthless is just that, and even guys like Brian Bruney are walking a ton of guys. As Manny pointed out, the K/BB ratio for the Yankee pen may be the worst in recent history. Snorre's boyfriend Scott Proctor hasn't gotten the job done, and it'll only get worse in August when their arms fall off.

(4) Outfield defense: In a word, pathetic. Shemp, Damon, and Abreu have terrible arms, and smart teams have been taking advantage of that all season long. Cabrera has a decent arm, but he misplays so many balls that he's worthless as well. Matsui is good at getting a read on fly balls and tracking them down, but he's still lost a step or two from his first couple of years here. Extra hits and extra bases taken lead to extra runs and extra losses. It's that simple.

(3) Moose: Re-signing Mike Mussina was a disaster. Every once in a while he pitches a brilliant game, so Old York figures that as long as they can straighten him out, he'll be a Cy Young winner. In 2007, however, his brilliant games have been few and far between. Nearly halfway through the season, he's got a grand total of 4 wins and an ERA of 4.63. And get this - he's on pace to strike out about 90 batters. Ca$hman, I know the market for starting pitching was thin, but what the hell were you thinking?

(2) First base mess: Relying on Doug Mienkiewicz was silly, considering the guy hasn't hit a lick in years, but at least he was great defensively. After Doug came Josh Phelps, Andy Phillips, and Miguel Cairo. Nada. Junkee first basemen rank 10th in the AL in OPS, and in the bottom half of just about every category. Had they gotten someone decent, we might not be dreaming of a Yankee-free October.

(1) Abreu over Sheffield: We've gone through this many times, but to me, this is the move that killed them more than anything else. Other than A-Schmuck, they don't have a legit home run hitter. A-Rod's hit 28 home runs. The next best is Ringo at 9. Abreu is at 4. Sheffield, meanwhile, over in Detroit has hit 18 dingers, and has an OPS of .931. Abreu's OPS? Only 200+ points lower at .689. Ca$hman may have had enough of Sheff's antics and thus let him go, but Abreu was yet another bust, and this was the bust that broke the camel's back. So bye bye Yankees.

- Feel free to add your own in the comments section.


Coop said...

YD, you also forgot to add that A-Rod's smokin hot beginning has tapered and really affected the team.

Juice-on Giambi has also been out a majority of the season with no bonafide replacement.

mouse said...

I'd add bringing Torre back. It was supposedly Cashman who saved Torre's job after last year's ALDS, despite the fact that Torre had the gall to bat A-Rod eighth in the lineup in the final game. That alone should've been a huge red flag that Torre's "magic touch" was gone.

The Randy Johnson deal doesn't look too good either. Granted, RJ has been on and off the DL this season, but when he's been out there, he's been the kind of strikeout machine the Yankees could really use. Vizcaino has sucked and the minor leaguers Cashman got have been less than stellar as well.

Oh, and the conditioning coach, whatever his name was. Cashman brought him on board despite having no experience with training athletes, and then had to fire him when everyone started pullling hamstrings. Brilliant move there.

RS Bat Boy said...

Those are 10 great reasons that finally give meaning to the favorite Red Sox chant: Yankees Suck!

Finally that statement holds some meaning!

The Yankees 12 year reign as AL East champs is over forever! Hail, hail the Empire is finally dead!
Twins and Angels (again) sweep them in their backyard this coming week! 37-48 at the break!

The Yankee Despiser said...

RS Rat Boy:

From your lips to God's ears!