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  • Tim Kabel

About Last Night: The Yankees Were Downed by the Brewers 8-2.

About Last Night: The Yankees Were Downed by the Brewers 8-2

By Tim Kabel

September 9, 2023

***

The Yankees have been playing a lot better since they began their youth movement. They were 8-2 in their last 10 games headed into last night. Overall, they are hovering around the .500 mark for the season. That is not ideal, and certainly not what was expected or hoped for at the beginning of the season. However, it is better than they were doing before adding all the youngsters to the roster.


There are still some announcers, media figures, and fans who are speculating about what it would take for the Yankees to make the playoffs. That is almost a waste of time and energy. It is mathematically possible but, it is also possible that a millionaire will knock on my door tomorrow with a big sack of money. Possible does not mean likely. It would be better watch and enjoy what we are seeing from the young players and get an idea as to the likelihood that they will be contributors next year and beyond. As Joe Pesci would say in My Cousin Vinny, "So far, the youts look pretty good."


Quick Stats -

  • Anthony Rizzo has been shut down for the rest of the season. The Yankees should have Austin Wells play a few games at first base to see if he can handle it in preparation for next season, If it was up to me, on would have Giancarlo Stanton work out there before games, when no one is looking, just to see if that could be a possibility.

  • Jasson Dominguez became the youngest player in the Majors since 1901 and the only Yankees' player to hit four homers in his first seven games.

  • Jhony Brito has started many games this season in both the Majors and the minor leagues. The Yankees are trying to determine what role he will have on the team next season. in the top of the seventh inning, he had a runner on third base with one out. Rather than leaving Brito in to see what he could do, Aaron Boone brought in Jonathan Loaisiga, who imploded. Why? As Yul Brynner said in The King and I, “is a puzzlement".

  • Luis Severino, who started, left the game in pain with an apparent side injury. That might end his season... and his Yankees career.

  • I had to listen to the first inning or so on the radio last night. Since virtually every element of the Yankees' radio broadcast is sponsored by some entity, perhaps John's missed calls could be sponsored by Pearle Vision Center.

  • Jasson Dominguez recorded his first Major League stolen base. He had 40 in the minor leagues before being called up. His blend of power and speed is truly impressive.

  • The Yankees had a sloppy game defensively last night, committing two errors and botching several other plays. Anthony Volpe did not have his normal smooth game in the field. But that is something he should just shake off, as he is extremely solid defensively.

  • Surprisingly, the newest Brewer, Josh Donaldson, did not play for Milwaukee last night.

  • Jake Bauers is two for his last 31. We don't need to see him playing again.

  • Gerrit Cole turned 33 yesterday. Hopefully, Sparky Lyle wasn't at the stadium early for Old Timers' Day. If he was, I don't think anyone would want birthday cake.

  • The Yankees have hit a home run in 12 straight games, which is their longest streak of the season.

  • The Tampa Bay Rays traded Willie Adames to make room for Wander Franco. How do you think they feel about that move now?

  • On September 8th, 1982, Don Mattingly made his Major League debut as a defensive replacement for Ken Griffey, Sr. in leftfield.

The Big Story - The Yankees are still not a very good team right now. However, they are more interesting and a lot more fun to watch these days. If we still had to endure Josh Donaldson, Aaron Hicks, Franchy Cordero, Billy McKinley, Willie Calhoun, and Isiah Kiner-Falefa as regulars in the lineup, I don't think many of us would be watching at this point. The youth movement is at the very least exciting. It is interesting. I for one, enjoy watching the young players learn, develop and hopefully, improve. They are still not going to win every game and they are going to make mistakes, but potential and promise for the future are much more exciting than tired, washed-up veterans going through the motions. Player of the Day -

Jasson Dominguez hit a two-run home run and stole a base.


Notable Performance -

The grounds crew had the field looking very nice last night.

Better to Forget-

Just about everything else besides Dominguez. Even in his last at bat, he almost beat out a ground ball to first base. That type of hustle is refreshing. Contrast that to what we saw from Josh Donaldson on a regular basis.

My Take -

It seems that a lot of the announcers, reporters, and fans are trying to have things both ways. They are embracing the youth movement and advocating playing time for the kids. At the same time, they are pontificating about how the Yankees need to play flawless baseball to catch the last Wild Card spot. It would take a miracle for the Yankees to make the playoffs. Miracles are not planned. If they were, they wouldn't be called miracles. So, to come up with a strategy or a plan to achieve the goal of making the playoffs is absurd.


The Yankees need to remain committed to playing the young players and see what develops. If a miracle occurs and they do make the playoffs, that would be absolutely wonderful. But let's not count on it.


So far, I like what I have seen of the young players. I realize that Jasson Dominguez is not going to hit four home runs a week for the rest of the season or the rest of his career. However, the other players all talk about how grounded and unflappable he is. He seems to be genuinely enjoying himself in the major leagues. He also seems to work hard and put in a lot of effort. To me, that is just as impressive as the home runs. Although, I do have to say that the ball really seems to jump off his bat.


Dominguez is not the only impressive rookie the Yankees have. Just about all of them seem to be doing well. Oswald Peraza has been hitting much better since he reverted to using a leg kick as part of his swing.


The Yankees have 21 games left and stand at 70-71 for the season. They need to see as much as they can out of the youngsters in the next three weeks. They don't need to focus on wins and losses. They need to gather as much information as they can about the youngsters to see what their roles will be for next year. Dominguez and the others are gaining tremendous experience right now. It is like putting money in the bank toward next season. The "youts" will have a whole month of major league experience before beginning spring training next year. Hopefully, that will reduce their growing pains. You have to like what you are seeing from this group of young players so far. Let's enjoy the next three weeks and stop talking about the playoffs.

Next Up -

Today, the Yankees will play the second game of the three-game series against the Brewers at Yankee Stadium at 2:05 PM, after the Old Timers' Day festivities. Michael King (4-5 2.89 ERA) will face Milwaukee's Wade Miley (7-4 3.33 ERA).

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