Yankees’ Challenging Season: A Closer Look


The New York Yankees, one of baseball’s most iconic franchises, are facing their worst season in decades. Let’s deep dive into their current state, evaluate their key moves, and discuss the potential way forward.

A Glimmer of Hope Dimmed

While the Yankees are on the brink of missing the postseason, it wasn’t always bleak this year. Despite their imminent exclusion, they’ve shown promise with some late-season wins. Manager Aaron Boone and his decision to prioritize young talent over seasoned players seems to have breathed new life into the team’s performance. However, these September successes can’t erase the challenges faced throughout the season.

Seasons at a Glance

202192-70Barely avoided a tiebreaker game and lost in the Wild Card
202299-63Started strong at 61-23 but ended with an ALCS sweep
202376-76 (so far)Likely to miss the postseason for the first time since 2016

The 2022 season stands out. Their impressive start was overshadowed by a mediocre finish, indicating deeper issues within the team.

The Backdrop: Performance Analysis

Over the last 239 games, the Yankees have a record of 117-122, a statistic that fans find alarming. Their 2020 season, which saw a modest 33-27, is worth noting since they only qualified for the postseason due to an expanded format.

baseball player

Cashman’s Controversies

General Manager Brian Cashman, who has held the position since 1998, is facing scrutiny. The July 9th firing of hitting coach Dillon Lawson marked a rare in-season coaching change – the first since 1995. This move indicated the level of concern within the organization.

Key Missteps

  • Trades involving Joey Gallo and Frankie Montas: No discernible positive impact.
  • Evaluations of Josh Donaldson and Isiah Kiner-Falefa: Arguably poor decisions.
  • Trading Jordan Montgomery for Harrison Bader: Bader ended up on waivers without a follow-up trade.
  • Carlos Rodón’s acquisition: 5.90 ERA in 12 starts punctuated by injuries.
  • Neglect of the left field position: An ongoing issue for three years.

Despite these setbacks, the Yankees did see successes. Acquisitions of relievers Clay Holmes and Wandy Peralta and catcher Jose Trevino have proven fruitful.

The Larger Picture

The present state of the Yankees is a stark contrast to the expectations placed upon them. While their roster boasts stars like Gerrit Cole and Aaron Judge, these players are on the declining side of their careers. The contracts binding them could become liabilities, and there’s a concerning pattern of players plateauing after arriving in the Bronx.

Future Prospects

Cashman, in an honest assessment, admitted, “It’s been a disaster this season.” But is the blame solely his? The Yankees’ chairman Hal Steinbrenner hinted at a deep dive into their analytics and player development without confirming concrete steps. With the team’s vast resources, there’s an expectation of a much higher payroll to attract elite talent.

The conclusion? While there’s potential for the Yankees to bounce back in 2024 with the right offseason moves, the larger issues remain. The strategy and decisions of the last few years have not been effective, as evident from their on-field performance.

Conclusion: A Crucial Juncture

Manager Aaron Boone aptly commented two years ago that the “league has closed the gap on us.” The statement rings true today, as the Yankees seem to lag behind other teams in their strategies and execution.

While change doesn’t always guarantee success, the status quo hasn’t been promising either. The Yankees find themselves at a critical crossroads, with pressing decisions that will shape their future. Only time will tell if they can reignite the magic that once made them baseball legends.

General Sport Observer Marc Defaou
reviewed by: Marc Defaou (Sport Expert)

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