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Yankees GBU – Salvaging a victory

The New York Yankees had a disappointing trade deadline but they still had a game to play Wednesday afternoon.  It was a game they needed to win, as they had dropped four of their last five.  Desperate times call for desperate measures and even though the Yankees didn’t play particularly well in their short series with the Arizona Diamondbacks, they found a way to win.


The Good

The Sock Man delivers

Mike Tauchman went 0-for-4 in the opening game of the two game series, but redeemed himself on Wednesday afternoon with a two run home run and another hit to boot.  Tauchman has been one of the best players on the Yankees for weeks, and has bumped up his average to .280 in the process.

The Sock Man has filled in nicely for Brett Gardner, who is still on the I.L., along with the rest of the Yankees.  Regardless, Tauchman provides major stability in the outfield and now with the bat.

Ro-Ro your boat

Austin Romine provided the biggest at-bat of the series, a two-run homer to give the Yankees a 4-3 lead, a lead they would pile on to in the bottom of the eighth.  Romine took the second pitch he saw and launched it into the left field seats.  It was a no doubt home run and one of the reasons why as much as the pitching has struggled, the Yankees are never out of a game.

Romine has quietly been great at the plate over the last two weeks.  He has six hits and seven RBIs in his last five games started and isn’t a hole in what is now a depleted Yankees lineup.  If Romine can continue to stroke until Gary Sanchez gets back, he’ll provide some much needed pop in what’s been a meh lineup recently.

Kahnle, Otto and Britt get back on track

I can’t say that the Yankee’s bullpen is fully back because Aroldis Chapman is still not a reliable closer, but the three-headed monster of Tommy Kahnle, Adam Ottavino and Zack Britton looked mighty fine on Wednesday afternoon, keeping the Yankees in the game.  Ottavino eventually got the win but between the three pitchers they struck out four and only gave up one hit.

With no additions coming to the starting rotation, these three will be relied upon heavily going into the postseason.  They need to be on their A game at all times because one slip up in a high leverage situation is a confidence killer.  Obviously they all can’t be perfect but the Yankees need their bullpen firing on all cylinders if they want to have a chance to compete for the World Series.

The Bad

Aaron Judge slumping

Sure Aaron Judge got a hit today that may finally be the one that gets him out of this funk, but he was still absolutely horrendous in the shortened season.  He was 1-for-7 with five strikeouts and looked lost at the plate at times.  It looks like he’s guessing too much and not relying on that great eye that he has.

When Judge is rolling he’s taking as many pitches as possible, laying off those out of the strike zone and mashing the ball to all parts of the field.  When he’s off, this is exactly what it looks like.  Multiple strikeout games, zero awareness at the plate and some weak at-bats.  He’ll be fine but the Yankees need him now more than ever.

Luke Voit and David Hale to the I.L.

The reason why the Yanks need Judge badly is because one of their best sluggers, Luke Voit, is back on the I.L. with what’s rumored to be a sports hernia.  From reports, Voit is going to try and rehab it but he may need surgery and will be out for six or so weeks.

Voit hasn’t been slugging how he was at the beginning of the season but with D.J. Lemahieu, Brett Gardner and Giancarlo Stanton all on the mend, the Yankees are running out of bodies to throw out there.  David Hale is an integral part of the Yankee’s bullpen and his injury brings Jonathan Holder back up to the big ballclub.  If Holder can hone his stuff in it won’t be much of a loss, but Hale was the jack of all trades for the Yankees and his Swiss-Army knife flexibility is still gone.

The Ugly

Not getting any starting pitching help

The ugliest mark on the Yankees didn’t even take part in the series.  It was the failure of Brian Cashman to secure even a mid-level starter.  The Yankees had meh performances from J.A. Happ and Masahiro Tanaka, and now that the dust has settled the Yankees aren’t any better of a team than they were just a few days ago.

They still has some serious question marks in their rotation and the status of Luis Severino is still unknown.  Cashman whiffed big time and regardless of what their record is, they can’t be throwing Happ out there against Justin Verlander in Game 6 of the ALCS.  They needed to do more and they didn’t, plain and simple.

Aroldis Chapman stinks

Here’s a hot take;  Aroldis Chapman is not a good pitcher.  He throws very hard and can get batters out, but he’s not a good pitcher.  The Yankees nearly blew a four run lead in the top of the ninth on Wednesday, as Nestor Cortes Jr. gave up a home run on two pitches and Aroldis Chapman gave up a run of his own.

The Yankees should not rely on Chapman to be their lone closer at the end of the bullpen.  He is not reliable in any sense of the word and even when he is reliable, he never has an easy outing.  He could be at his best and still walk the first batter he faces.  The Yankees would be lucky if they ever won a World Series with him, because he just isn’t nearly as good as his stats show.



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