Well, the Yankees lost in the first round of the playoffs once again. I was at the game. It wasn't a fun game to watch because they were never really in it. Down 4-0 after just two innings against Cleveland's number four starter, you'd think the Yanks would bang their way right back into the game, pound away until they grabbed the lead. That's what they did in the second half of the season when they turned their year around after a dreadful 21-29 start and a 42-43 all-star break record. They were on a roll, reinvigorated with the influx of new young homegrown players like Cano, Melky, Joba, Hughes, Duncan, Kennedy.
But the Yankees just can't score in the post season anymore. And it's not the old cliche of "good pitching beats good hitting" because, in the Yanks' case, bad pitching also beats good hitting. The attack of the gnats in Game 2 didn't help, either. So it's another season lost, and another year where Yankee fans have to watch the Red Sox steamroll their way through the post season without us there to stop them.
Changes are coming soon to the Yankees. A lot of players are free agents, including Mariano, Posada, and soon-to-be MVP ARod, if he opts out of his contract. Plus Joe Torre has probably managed his last game in NY. But the future is still promising. The kids are here already and they're the real thing. Cano is 25 and had 97 RBI. Melky (23) took the CF job away from Damon. Hughes is 21 and was 5-3, and will be in the rotation next year. Joba is also 21 and will be a starter next year. With Wang and Pettitte (if he exercises his option) heading up the rotation, that's a damn strong first 4. Mussina will hang around as the fifth starter since he is still under contract.
But who will manage? Despite a rumor about Tony LaRussa, the two obvious choices still are Don Mattingly and Joe Girardi. I'd like to see Girardi since he has managerial experience. Or maybe John Tuturro can reprise his role as Billy Martin from Bronx Is Burning and bring home the pennant once again.
It's gonna be a long off-season.