This is how the Yankees season has gone up until this point in time, the debate for weeks has been what should they do at the MLB Trade deadline. Not that they should be buyers, but should they be sellers. Should they trade veterans like Carlos Beltran, Aroldis Chapman and Andrew Miller to contending teams for young pieces that can hopefully secure a brighter future.
A couple of weeks back, Yankees president Randy Levine said, “I don’t pay any attention to any of that. That’s for you guys [with] nothing more important to write about than to write nonsense. When we decide to become sellers, if we decide to become sellers or if we decide to become buyers, you’ll know. The difference is that most of you guys have never run anything and we have a lot of history here of knowing what we’re doing. We have] a lot of confidence in our baseball operations people. So, we’ll see what happens. All the rest is just noise.”
I may have not run any sort of organization in my life and the closest thing was probably a lemonade stand when I was a kid trying to add to the old piggy bank.
However, I do know what I am watching when I watch the Yankees this season and that is an average to below average team that is a far cry from the championship caliber teams that made the Old Yankee Stadium their home in the late 90’s, As the Yankees lost their second straight after the All-Star break to the Red Sox, they are two games under five hundred and continue to play with the same consistency that they showed in the 1st half of the season. They are consistently average or a tad below.
At least when I grew up watching the Yankees in the 80’s, they were exciting and dysfunctional. In the late 90’s, the suspension of George Steinbrenner and the patience with prospects paid off as I witnessed the greatest era of Yankees baseball since I was born. They owned this city as they lived in October and the reclaimed their place amongst the baseball elite.
What the Yankees are left with now are bad contracts on old players that are no longer worth the money they are being paid. Now, the Yankees franchise is paying the price for all the big money long-term deals. At some point, you will pay the price and the Yankees certainly are.
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There have been reports that Yankees management and their baseball people look at this team differently. The Steinbrenner’s and Levine don’t want to strip this team down, while Brian Cashman and the baseball people want to make multiple trades before August 1st and want to think about the future.
I have never run a baseball franchise, but I have watched enough baseball over my lifetime to know when a team is a contender or a pretender. The Yankees have had the look of a pretender this entire season. Lack of consistent starting pitching and a line-up that lacks any trademark punch has defined the 2016 Yankees.
I understand it is a difficult decision for the Yankees because they certainly don’t want to turn the city over to the Mets and close up shop for the last two months of the season. After all, that is not the Yankees way. With that being said, if you are not a true contender then you are just wasting time and the Yankees have been wasting time for some time now. Just as it is not the Yankees way to be sellers at the MLB trade deadline, you certainly can not be buyers this season. GM Brian Cashman would often say over the years that teams needed to show they deserved reinforcements before he would go out and try and strengthen a team in any given year. Simply said, they need to show they were a team of quality and had a chance to make a run to the playoffs.
This team has shown none of those qualities. After winning their series against the Indians in Cleveland to close out the first half, they already lost the opening series to begin the second half to the Red Sox.
And while we are at it, take a good look at Boston as they have young cornerstone pieces in Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr. Tell me the cornerstone position players on the Yankees? Didi Gregorius?
I get it Randy, Hank and Hal. You do not want to lost money and TV ratings and be playing in front of even more empty seats in the early fall. I get it. But it is time to actually show how smart you want people to think you are. The majority of fans know what this team is. It is about time that you realize it and accept it. The longer you live in denial, the more painful this will be. Don't worry about the fans as I believe they are willing to take a hit this season for the chance to get it right for consistent long-term success.
Remember when the Yankees were a title contender and not just a playoff contender. There is a BIG difference and you don’t have to run a baseball franchise to understand that