October 19, 2019

Schadenfreude 262 (A Continuing Series)

YED 2001 - November 4
YED 2002 - October 5
YED 2003 - October 25
YED 2004 - October 20
YED 2005 - October 10
YED 2006 - October 7
YED 2007 - October 8
YED 2008 - September 23
YED 2010 - October 22
YED 2011 - October 6
YED 2012 - October 18
YED 2013 - September 25
YED 2014 - September 24
YED 2015 - October 6
YED 2016 - September 29
YED 2017 - October 21
YED 2018 - October 9
YED 2019 - October 19

Jake Devin, Pinstripe Alley:
There is the final play of the Yankees' 2019 season. Altuve's bomb was gone the moment it left the bat, dejuiced ball and all, and after the Yankees spent hours clawing back from Green's early missteps, everything they fought for was gone in an instant.

This season, YED is celebrated on October 20, which is also the 15th anniversary of the Yankees' fourth consecutive loss to the 2004 Red Sox, in ALCS Game 7.

Those four losses, after the Yankees led the series 3-0, constitute the biggest choke in baseball history, an unprecedented flop that will never be surpassed as long as professional baseball is played on Earth.

ALCS Game 6
Yankees - 010 100 002 - 4 10  0
Astros  - 300 001 002 - 6  6  0

ALSO: Spanish, Korean Calls Of Altuve's Walk-Off HR

George A. King III, Post:
It sounded and felt like a funeral home.

Man hugs that produced the loud sound of hands slapping shirtless backs, moist eyes, chins buried on shoulders and soft words that couldn't chill the grief that smothered the Yankees' clubhouse late Saturday night.

Thanks to DJ LeMahieu's dramatic two-run home run in the ninth, the Yankees had gotten off the canvas ... The opposite-field poke to right only tied the score, but a feeling that Game 6 of the ALCS was theirs washed over the Yankees.

So when Jose Altuve, the smallest man on the field with an oversized heart and an ocean of desire, sent an Aroldis Chapman slider beyond the left-field wall for a two-run homer that carried the Astros to a pulsating, 6-4, win in front of a sold out Minute Maid Park crowd of 43,357, the Yankees were ushered into winter and Houston was on the way to their second World Series in three years, where they will face the Nationals.

"At this time of the year only one team goes home happy," Brett Gardner said in a Yankees' clubhouse as quiet as a cemetery after midnight. ...

"It's a failure," [Aaron] Judge said ... "No matter how many games we won during the regular season it is a failure."

It's the first time since 1910-19, the Yankees went through a decade without reaching the World Series. Their last appearance was 2009 ...

It is also the second time in three years the Astros ended the Yankees' season in the ALCS at Minute Maid Park.

Kristie Ackert, Daily News:
Aaron Judge had to walk around the celebration that was forming on the infield. Jose Altuve had just crushed a two-run, walk-off home run off Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman for a 6-4 Astros win over the Yankees, clinching the American League Championship Series Saturday night. The young face of the Yankees franchise made the slow walk in from right field having to watch a team celebrate ending the Bombers' season for the third straight year.

The Astros won the series and advanced to their second World Series in three years, ending the Yankees' season both times en route. The Yankees finished off their most disappointing decade in 100 years. This is the first decade since the 1910s that the Yankees have not even appeared in a World Series. ...

"It's a failure," Judge declared of the 2019 Yankees. ...

They described themselves as Savages in the Box and wore t-shirts with 'Next Man Up' on them as a reminder of how resilient they were. ...

And with one swing on a slider that got away from Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman, it was over.

"This definitely isn't how we thought it would end," Brett Gardner said. ...

It will be the sloppiness and missed opportunities on offense that will haunt Judge and his teammates this winter as they try to figure out how to get better than the Astros.

ESPN Stats & Info: "The Yankees' 4 straight LCS series losses [2010, 2012, 2017, 2019] ties the longest streak in MLB history."

Jayson Stark: "José Altuve joins Bill Mazeroski (Game 7 of the 1960 WS) as the only players to hit a walk-off HR to end a postseason series after their team had blown the lead in the same inning. ... Both came against the Yankees."

Carlos Correa: "It's a great series. ... Like they call themselves, they're savages. But in this jungle called the American League, we're the apex predator."

Dan Martin, Post:
The Astros have knocked out the Yankees in the ALCS two of the past three seasons — and no one has hurt them more than Jose Altuve, whose game-winning two-run homer in the ninth sent Houston to the World Series. And the Yankees home. ...

He did that a lot in the ALCS — and Altuve also started a nifty double play on a Gary Sanchez grounder to second to end the top of the eighth.

But no hit was more important than his last. ...

Even after the dramatic ending, neither Aaron Boone nor Chapman regretted the manager's decision to have Chapman pitch to Altuve after a two-out walk to George Springer. ...

Jake Marisnick was on deck, having come in as a pinch runner for Michael Brantley in the bottom of the eighth.

Boone said he didn't consider putting Altuve on to get to Marisnick. ...

And Altuve took care of the rest.

Mike Vaccaro, Post:
And in an eyeblink, it was gone, all of it ...

All if it, gone in a flash, gone in a blur, gone in a spasm of raw, abject heartache.

In an eyeblink, Jose Altuve joined the ranks of Yankees' October serial killers, forming an unholy alliance alongside Luis Gonzalez and Edgar Martinez and Bill Mazeroski, a quartet of saboteurs who've eliminated the Yankees with one well-timed ... swing of a bat.

Ken Davidoff, Post:
This 2019 Yankees' season turned from special to sour in a week's time for one very obvious, analytical reason:

They lost their mojo.

To be more technical, they just stopped hitting with runners in scoring position. ...

Yes, the Yankees are done, courtesy of a 6-4 loss to the Astros in American League Championship Series Game 6 at Minute Maid Park — Jose Altuve crushed a walk-off, two-run homer off Aroldis Chapman in the bottom of the ninth — that eliminated them by a 4-2 count as Houston reached its second Fall Classic in three years. ...

No major league team produced at a higher level with runners in scoring position during the regular season than the Yankees, who hit a terrific .294/.372/.518. ... In the second week of October, however, they reverted to their 2018 form, going 6-for-35 (.171). ...

Game 6 proved a fitting coda, the Yankees threatening in this battle of the bullpens and falling short again and again, going just 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position. ... [T]he Yankees failed ... stranding men on first and second in the second, the bases loaded in the third and first and second in the sixth. For good measure, they ended the seventh and eighth innings by hitting into double plays. ...

When the Yankees fell to the Red Sox in last year's AL Division Series, they went just 4-for-26 (.154) in their clutch at-bats. ...

Another cold winter awaits [the Yankees] as they try to put together the proper combination of pitching, hitting, defense — and mojo.

Dennis Young, Daily News:
Edwin Encarnacion forgot how to hit; Brian Cashman forgot how to make a brazen trade for a starting pitcher; the Astros are nearly the perfect team. But [Aaron] Judge made the type of mental mistake on Saturday night that's extremely easy to remember.

With the Yankees trailing 4-2 with one out in the top of the seventh, Michael Brantley made a spectacular diving catch on a tweener fly ball by Aaron Hicks. Inexplicably, Judge had already sprinted all the way to second base, making it easy for Brantley to hop up and double Judge off first. ...

Joel Sherman, Post:
[Aaron] Boone turned September into a spa month for the best of his bullpen, so light was their workload. All the preservation was done with October in mind. The Yankees saw those special relievers as the strength of the team. Get those pieces into playoff games early and often and ride that to the Canyon of Heroes.

The strategy did not work. Boone got Chad Green, Tommy Kahnle and finally Aroldis Chapman into Game 6 on Saturday night and they allowed all the runs — the last of them Jose Altuve walking the Yankees out of their season with a two-run homer off Chapman with one out in the bottom of the ninth. Chapman stood wide legged on the mound unmoving after the no-doubt blast enabled the Astros to win 6-4 and eliminate the Yankees in the ALCS for the second time in three years.

In this dramatic ALCS, the Yankees lost a crusher in the bottom of the ninth and a game in extra innings in Minute Maid Park. And the big blow that turned the momentum of Game 2 was a tying homer by George Springer off Adam Ottavino in the fifth inning that was instrumental in the Yanks not stealing two games to open the series in Houston. That helped push Ottavino from the ring of relief trust. ...

In Game 6, Boone could have gone with a traditional starter in J.A. Happ, but instead used one of his relievers of trust, Green, as an opener. Yuli Gurriel hit a three-run homer five batters into the bottom of the first. Kahnle, as the first Yankees reliever to be used a third straight day this season, surrendered a sixth-inning run. Chapman finished the misery.

It is possible the Yankees have been the second-best team in the majors the past three years, losing to the eventual champion Astros in the 2017 ALCS and Red Sox in a 2018 Division Series. There are no trophies for that. ...

In this ALCS, the Astros were better — don't overlook how good they are on defense and the bases. The Yanks' chance to equalize matters was in the pen. ...

That made Game 6 particularly tricky. Without German or total faith in Happ, the Yanks had no clear starter. So Boone turned to Green to try to deal with the righty might atop Houston's lineup. But Green, even when getting outs this postseason, had been hit hard often. ...

When Gurriel batted with two on and two out in the first, he was making his fourth at-bat of this ALCS versus Green. Gurriel was just 1-for-20 in the series, but two of his outs were liners against Green. Gary Sanchez went to the mound to talk to Green, Happ warmed. Green tried to beat Gurriel with a first-pitch fastball up. Gurriel opened up and crushed it into the Crawford Boxes.

It was 3-0. Houston had won its previous 65 home games when it constructed a three-run lead — last losing in July 2018. ...

The Yankees lost using exactly who Boone dreamed all season he would use. The plan had been incubating since February, hardened over the months of the season. Preserve the bullpen arms. Have them primed for October. Get them into the game over and over.

In the end — for the Yankees — that strategy did not provide relief.

Dan Martin, Post:
The Astros used seven pitchers to hold the Yankees to a pair of runs in their ALCS-clinching 6-4 win over the Yankees on Saturday night at Minute Maid Park, but it was the gloves of Josh Reddick and Michael Brantley that also played pivotal roles.

Known throughout the season for their outfield defense, the Astros got two key plays to help get them to their second World Series in three years.

With the Yankees down by a run in the top of the sixth, they got a one-out walk from Gary Sanchez and then a single by Gio Urshela to bring up Brett Gardner.

Gardner ripped a low liner to right, where Reddick made a diving — albeit awkward — catch to rob Gardner of an extra-base hit that would have at least tied the game and perhaps given the Yankees the lead.

Instead, it was the second out of the inning. DJ LeMahieu then grounded to shortstop to end the inning. ...

Aaron Judge opened the [seventh] inning with a liner that bounced off a leaping Carlos Correa's glove at short for a leadoff single.

Gleyber Torres popped out to bring up Aaron Hicks, who lofted a fly ball to shallow left.

With the switch-hitting Hicks batting from the left side, the Astros shifted to their right and his flare looked like it would drop. Judge risked it and bolted around second, but Michael Brantley raced in and made a fantastic diving catch, quickly got to his feet and fired a strong throw to Yuli Gurriel at first base to double off Judge.

Instead of a potential second-and-third, one-out situation, the inning was over — and so were the Yankees.

Post Staff:
Aroldis Chapman received a lot of grief and comments on his facial reactions on social media after giving up the game-winning, two-run homer to Jose Altuve in the ninth inning of the Yankees’ 6-4 loss to the Astros in Game 6 of the ALCS on Saturday night in Houston.

Here’s a sampling of some of the reactions:

Ken Davidoff, Post:
With the Yankees' season on the line Saturday night in American League Championship Series Game 6 at Minute Maid Park, they went with a Stanton-less lineup for the fourth time, starting Edwin Encarnacion at designated hitter. ...

Boone didn't want to start Encarnacion — who had slashed a woeful .067/.222/133 through the first four games of this series, then sat out Game 5 as Stanton played — at first base, which would likely shift DJ LeMahieu to third base and Gio Urshela to the bench. ...

The Yankees' decision to remove Stanton from their lineup marks the latest chapter in what has been an absolutely nightmarish second campaign for the 2017 National League Most Valuable Player. ...

This series, he has been plagued by a strained right quadriceps ... The 29-year-old neither looked good or performed well in the Yankees' 4-1 victory over the Astros, going 0-for-3 with a pair of strikeouts — the first one in the first inning, with teammates on second and third and no outs — against the Astros' Justin Verlander.
Mark Fischer, Post:
Saturday night's game between the Yankees and Astros will feature something that hasn't been done since Babe Ruth wore pinstripes: A pitcher finishing one postseason game, and then starting the next with no rest in between.

Houston Astros pitcher Brad Peacock will become the fourth pitcher in MLB history to do so — and the first in 96 years — when he takes the Minute Maid Park mound trying to eliminate the Yankees in Game 6 of the ALCS ...

The last to do so before Saturday was Firpo Marberry, who in 1924 struck out one batter to save Game 2 of the World Series for the Washington Senators before struggling in three innings as his team lost the next day. The Senators beat the New York Giants in seven games to win the title that year, while the Great Bambino hit 46 home runs for the Yankees.

Mordecai "Three Finger" Brown (Cubs, 1910) and Doc White (White Sox, 1906) are the only others in the exclusive club, with both feats coming in the World Series as well.

In the second inning, Brett "The Great Gazoo" Gardner batted with two men on base and his team trailing 3-1. Called strike 2 looked questionable on Gameday, but strike three did not. It was obviously a BALL! ... But there were no robot umps to save the MFY! ... Plate umpire Marvin Hudson blew the call - and all right-thinking baseball fans looooooved it!!

The MFY also left the bases loaded in the third inning.


UPDATE .............................. DEAD!


BklynSoxFan said...

The Red Sox won two AL pennants and World Championships in the 2010s, and the Yankees didn’t even lead their own CITY in pennants in the 2010s. The Mets 1, the MFY zilch.

Paul Hickman said...

Further Update :


accudart said...


GK said...

"In an eyeblink, Jose Altuve joined the ranks of Yankees' October serial killers, forming an unholy alliance alongside Luis Gonzalez and Edgar Martinez and Bill Mazeroski, a quartet of saboteurs who've eliminated the Yankees with one well-timed ... swing of a bat."

Nothing to disagree about the substance of Mike Vaccaro's writing, but writing a sentence that includes "October Yankee killers" and not finding a way to bring Papi into it is malpractice.

Jim said...

Just read Tyler Kepner column in NYT who points out that the skanks have now been bounced out of post-season play more times than they have won the WS--28-27. In the immortal words of Dizzy Dean (I think)--"Ah did not know that".

allan said...

Red Sox: 9 WS, 15 bounced out.

Red Sox: 9 seasons in postseason, 4 World Series titles
Yankees: 12 seasons in postseason, 1 World Series title