21-27. Wow. 12 games out of 1st place. As it stands right now, the Yankees need to go about 74-40 the rest of the way to make the playoffs. For a team that can’t win a series and just got swept at home, that seems like a long shot. There’s a lot of problems with this team obviously, but here are the major issues:
- Torre is completely mismanaging the bullpen. He wears out Proctor. Bruney has an ERA of about 1.50 and has been nothing but solid the entire season. Torre seems to refuse to use him in a big spot – big mistake.
- Torre also is so worried about egos, and trying to play guys out of their slumps. This team needs to win games. You can’t keep putting Giambi in the lineup every day when he’s an automatic out unless he walks. Abreu needs to bat at the bottom of the order until he starts hitting again. The guys who are hitting need to be in the middle of the lineup. Cano is getting hot, move him up in the order.
- Damon is a liability in center field. He should be the DH and Melky needs to play every day. His defense is so valuable. And he makes productive outs. He’ll hit a sac fly when needed, he can drop down a bunt, can steal a base, and can hit the ball the other way.
- Desperate times call for desperate measures. That means when the team has an off day, skip your 5th starter! Today is an example. Pettitte could start tonight and be on normal rest, but DeSalvo is getting the start. Granted, this is probably to set up Clemens’ return over the weekend at Fenway, but this is not the first time a situation like this has come about. If you can throw your best starter on normal rest, do it. We’ve thrown kids out on the mound enough this year.
- With the lineup struggling, the Yankees need to play more small ball and they just aren’t doing it. Torre needs to put down more bunts, put runners in motion, steal, hit and run, whatever it takes. They can’t keep sitting back and waiting for the three run home run because it just isn’t coming.
Finally, these guys just need to man up and put in the extra work and do what it takes to get themselves right so they can start winning games. Derek Jeter is still optimistic, and said that if you don’t think this team can win you should go home. I’m not saying anyone has given up, but it’s almost June already. Things need to get turned around and turned around in a hurry. At this point they should forget about the Red Sox and work on winning a series. The only way to get back into the race is to be consistent, and that means taking 2 out of 3 from everyone. But with the way they’re playing right now, that doesn’t even seem possible.