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Ranking the blame for the Yankees’ loss

Oct 7, 2011, 12:57 AM EST

CC Sabathia Reuters

Here’s a fun fact: the only one of the Yankees’ five highest-paid players to actually have a successful ALDS against the Tigers was A.J. Burnett.

But who is the most to blame for the series loss?  Let’s go in reverse order.

5. Joe Girardi – I don’t think he’s the main culprit here, though he could have employed a quicker hook with a struggling CC Sabathia in Game 3. One can also argue that he should have been more aggressive in using his best relievers — Mariano Rivera and David Robertson combined to pitch 3 1/3 innings in five games — but as well as the other relievers did, it probably wouldn’t have mattered much. Pinch-hitting Eric Chavez for Brett Gardner in Game 2 was his one bizarre move, and that one definitely didn’t work.

4. Derek Jeter – The Captain hit .250 with just one extra-base hit and an 8/1 K/BB ratio in the series. In the seventh inning or later, he was 2-for-9 with no RBI and five strikeouts. He also made an error that helped lead to two runs in the 5-3 loss in Game 2.

3. Alex Rodriguez – A-Rod managed just two singles in 18 at-bats in the series, though he did drive in three runs and walk four times. Thursday’s performance was his worst: he fanned in three of his five plate appearances, including in the game-ending at-bat against Jose Valverde.

2. Mark Teixeira – Girardi should have moved A-Rod out of the cleanup spot earlier in the series, but the likely replacement, Teixeira, may not have been any better. Teixeira finished the series 3-for-18. He did double and drive in a run with a bases-loaded walk tonight, but he failed to collect an RBI in the first four games.

1. CC Sabathia – Six runs in 8 2/3 innings for the Yankees’ ace. Things may turned out a whole lot differently if not for the Game 1 suspension (he came back on two days’ rest to start Monday and then two days’ rest in his Game 5 relief appearance), but Sabathia’s struggles are the biggest reason the Yankees didn’t advance. If he could have allowed two or three runs over six innings Monday, the Bombers probably would have won that game (the Tigers prevailed 5-4), and making the first relief appearance of his career, he gave up one run in 1 1/3 innings in the 3-2 loss tonight.

  1. miketreedy - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:20 AM

    It is the second year in a row that their season ended with ARod striking out. I would move him up to at least no. 2 on the list. He was awful in the post season again. Just think they have him for signed through 2017. Yikes….

    All that money and again they prove to be a bust. As a Rangers fan I was looking forward to knocking them out again.

    • firedude7160 - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:56 AM

      He is, in fact, the first player in MLB history to “strike out to loose a playoff series for two years in a row” (ESPN told me so)

      • pjmarn6 - Oct 7, 2011 at 5:27 AM

        Everybody who moaned and yelled and screamed at Alex Rodriguez choke and strike out to end the game should be aware that you watched $90,000 being flushed down the toilet. Right, 100% this season Rodriguez was paid $33,000,000 for 373 at bats or $90,000 an at bat.
        The system is broken! Dimaggio knew that the older he got the less he was worth and he watched Mantle come up and take his place and what damn sense is there that players get more money as they get older?
        In some professions the older you get the more valuable you get, the knowledge you accumulate helps your brain make leaps in ideas and you come up with better inventions and if you ask me to make you 8% annual at 15% tax rate, it is at the tip of my tongue and files. But athletes’ abilities decrease with age and why the hell they are paid more as they get older is stupidity.
        I was following the steroid scandals and some wag said that 75% of the Yankees were on steroids. He can’t prove it and I don’t know but sure as hell anyone who was on steroids did better than those who didn’t and future contracts were based on that steroid use.
        Now you take Montero. Guy has the makings of a star and he wouldn’t get the big bucks for five years. Why doesn’t the system paid a base salary and bonuses for what a player does during the year. Makes a hell of a lot more sense then seeing Rodriguez flush $90,000 down the sh*t hole!

      • ditto65 - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:26 AM

        Are you saying Dimaggio would have turned down money? Why even mention it?

      • purnellmeagrejr - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:19 AM

        pjmarn6 your post reminded me off over hearing a guy talking to himself on the streets of NYC.

      • svargas1963 - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:29 AM

        tehehe, as a Ranger fan who was at the ALCS game 6 last year, it was just so classic to watch him do that. We actually had a GREAT feeling that he was going to do that again. Of course it was much sweeter last year, but this year, just soooo I can’t even describe it.

      • pjmarn6 - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:00 PM

        Ditto look at DiMaggio’s statistics, a hell of a lot better than Rodriguez and he saw Mantle in the shadows and quit. I am sure, if he wanted or needed the money he could have stayed. Better you read it for yourself. DiMaggio was class. Seeing Rodriguez choke so many times makes me want to vomit. Watching him, and it looks all wrong. I knew when Texas signed him to that big contract he was eventually going to wind up with the Yankees, the bait was too tempting.
        Remember Jim Bouton, a good pitcher, but he started to choke and it happens again and again. You move a player to a big market town and have the pressure on him and he can’t take it.
        Of course you remember Yogi Berra, the best bad ball hitter in history. Watching his at bats and hitters will learn something.

      • pjmarn6 - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:19 PM

        Ditto Direct Answer YES DiMaggio could have played at least another 5 years just on his fame and made a hell of a lot more money. He had class and retired. Matter of fact he retired and lived out his life just two miles from where I lived.

      • lukeslice - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:24 PM

        Joe D was historically cheap…

        payroll payroll payroll. idiots.

    • pjmarn6 - Oct 7, 2011 at 4:39 AM

      Now they can all go home and have extra time enjoying their multimillion dollar mansions. Derek in Tampa Bay, Girardi in Minn, etc. I just don’t see these individuals as having the zest to play to the fullest possibility of their talents especially Gonzalez.

    • massivedick - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:09 AM

      This is funny (not your comment above, it’s valid) but all the “we played so bad”, “only if we … ” ….. they just got a$$ whipped by the Tigers, pure and simple. And I just love it. Tigers and Rangers going to be some good ball with no NY drama. Just baseball.

      • pjmarn6 - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:11 PM

        The “YANKEES” never showed up to play. If you followed the end of the season games, it was like watching Girardi play a bad game of checkers. Putting in Proctor all the time to get his ass whooped. No pitchers in the system to look over? It felt like the yanks weren’t fine tuning for the world series but some last place team, playing out the string. I believe CC is fuming at how many times the Yankees fuc*ed up and not give him his 20th win. If I was CC I would be furious too. The whole team let him down again and again. My thoughts are that it bothered him. Made him less effective and got him off the edge. I used to mircromanage every game and study the manager strategy and have an idea where he was going at any one moment. Frankly, Girardi confused me. He lost track of what he was doing about 30 games before the series started and played around without fine tuning his edge to win. Sometimes, long ball, sometimes, small ball, putting in players without rhyme or reason. It was stupid.

  2. raysfan1 - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:20 AM

    I think Girardi probably should have started Sabathia in game 4 instead of game 3. Swisher should have made your list.

  3. Walk - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:22 AM

    It is tough after a heartbreaking loss like this to think favorably of a team. However they did win 90 something games, 97 i think, and fought through inconsistent pitching, injuries, and an aging roster. Great year for the yankees but sadly it is over now, the one thing i do know is any time they feel they fell short the next year the rest of the division better watch out.

    • purnellmeagrejr - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:20 AM

      Great Year for the Yankees – an even greater one for Yankee haters.

      • lukeslice - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:32 PM

        HAHHA…sad. Yankees had a better year than all of you except Tigers, Rangers, and either Brewers/D-Backs or Phillies/Cards. so enjoy hating…we’ll be enjoying our team continuing to make the playoffs every year.

  4. brianbowman16 - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:27 AM

    Wow, not ONE single ‘Detroit Tigers beat the Yankees to advance;.’ headline

    I am SOOOOO F***ING SHOCKED (insert MASSIVE sarcasm here) that the Yankees choked and the Detroit Tigers (who by the way have ADVANCED to the alcs) DIDN’T, COULDN’T POSSIBLY EVER EVER EVER, beat them.

    Those danged Tigers, just a rag tag bunch bunch of fellers that happened to show up and lucked into playing for a World Series birth!
    Golly gee darn, buddy

    • brianbowman16 - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:29 AM

      ok my bad, there IS one headline, but it’ll be buried under yankees choked bull**it by 4 am

    • tashkalucy - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:33 AM

      Don’t you see it?

      The national media are a bunch of kids that think baseball is played he way the PR departments tell them it’s played.

      MLB is all about the Red Sox and Yankees. has been that way for 30 years.

      Baseball is a sensational game. And you can tell because no matter how hard MLB tris to screw it up, people still watch it some (nothing like the NFL o course).

      HardbalTalk is to baseball what the National Enquirer is to news. And ESPN is similar.

    • cba456 - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:55 AM

      You do realize, at this moment, the headlines on espn.com, yahoosports.com, nbcsports.com etc. all read some variation of “Tigers roar on!”? And the article right below this one says the same thing? Mellow out. There will be plenty of talk about the Tigers in the next couple weeks.

      If you don’t like these types of posts, don’t read them. But people like it when the favorites lose, and like placing blame. Articles like this will be read by tigers fans, yankees fans, and yankee haters. Which is a lot of people.

      • brianbowman16 - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:35 AM

        at the time i wrote that, i was talking about this site.
        I haven’t gone to espn’s site in probably a year or so.
        every once in awhile my brother sends me a link to there, i check out the article he sent and then i’m gone, i get enough red sox/yankees stuff here, i don’t need to see it everywhere else.

        I read these posts, because unlike a lot of people, i like to have backup when i have a bitch about something

    • svargas1963 - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:32 AM

      Believe me, it was the SAME story last year with the Rangers.

      • artisan3m - Oct 7, 2011 at 11:30 AM

        This is true, svargas. East coast writers dominate baseball and if someone OTHER than the Yanks and Sox are in the hunt, its sheer torture until next season. The Rangers are the orphaned stepchild in baseball right now and that is understandable because they have a fairly pedestrian post season record ~ and a brief one, at that. As a Ranger fan I understand this bias but hopefully we can join the “club” as world champs this years and break the stigma of “bridesmaid.”

  5. tashkalucy - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:28 AM

    Yes, let’s not give credit to the team that won.

    Let’s have the national media explain why the awesome Yankees followed the awesome Red Sox (didn’t they tell us these teams were that going back to last November), LOST. No other teams culd possible play better and beat them.

    When I was coming up the media had people working in it that explained the game to the reader.

    Now the national media needs readers t explain the game to the writers/commentators, because they don’t understand the game, and follow Peter Gammons in writing juicy rumors and pushing those in MLB that cooperate with them.

    Amazing what has happened to MLB in my lifetime.

    The first thing the owners need to do is take their games off ESPN and give the contract to a network that will cover teams equally even if they’re outside of Boston and NYC.

    Then there needs to be some discussion on why when a game is televised on cable from a mid-market city to Boston or NYC when the mid-market team is playing one of the fat and lazy legends in their own minds, that the mid-market team gets 1/4 or 1/5 of the revenue.

    Me?

    If I owned a mid or small market team I would not allow a game to be televised from my park unless I got half the revenues.

    • mattlion - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:39 AM

      Yep. Ok buddy. And when many of those small/mid market teams have their biggest attendance and local tv ratings days, along with their revenue sharing money, you’ll realize which teams keep baseball afloat.

      • bobdira - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:42 AM

        That’s a valid point, but you can’t ignore the east coast leanings of the media and the decided advantage big market teams have because of demographics and funding in a league that is financially run by players who want more and a few owners who have it to give.

    • ditto65 - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:31 AM

      They would show the Royals play the A’s if people would watch.

  6. bigleagues - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:31 AM

    The Yankees are living with a pretty hefty dilemma (pardon the pun). As their rotation is constituted right now they cannot make the post-season without CC Sabathia. Yet, once in the post-season – they can’t win with CC Sabathia.

    With the exception of 2009 – CC Sabathia kind of sucks in the post-season – and we’re talking a relatively decent sample size for judging post-season performance (15 Starts over 6 post-seasons with 3 different teams).

                                                                                 
    Year     Tm Series Rslt  Opp W L  W-L%   ERA GS CG   IP  H ER  WHIP BB/9 SO/9
    2001    CLE   ALDS    L  SEA 1 0 1.000  3.00  1  0  6.0  6  2 1.833  7.5  7.5
                                                                                 
    2007    CLE   ALDS    W  NYY 1 0 1.000  5.40  1  0  5.0  4  3 2.000 10.8  9.0
    2007    CLE   ALCS    L  BOS 0 2  .000 10.45  2  0 10.1 17 12 2.323  6.1  7.8
    2008    MIL   NLDS    L  PHI 0 1  .000 12.27  1  0  3.2  6  5 2.727  9.8 12.3
    2009    NYY   ALDS    W  MIN 1 0 1.000  1.35  1  0  6.2  8  1 1.200  0.0 10.8
    2009    NYY   ALCS    W  LAA 2 0 1.000  1.13  2  0 16.0  9  2 0.750  1.7  6.8
    2009    NYY     WS    W  PHI 0 1  .000  3.29  2  0 13.2 11  5 1.244  4.0  7.9
    2010    NYY   ALDS    W  MIN 1 0 1.000  4.50  1  0  6.0  5  3 1.333  4.5  7.5
    2010    NYY   ALCS    L  TEX 1 0 1.000  6.30  2  0 10.0 17  7 2.100  3.6  9.0
    2011    NYY   ALDS    T  DET 0       0  6.14  2  0  7.1  8  5 1.909  7.4  8.6
    6 Seasons (10 Series)        7 4  .636  4.78 15  0 84.2 91 45 1.594  4.7  8.3
    5 ALDS                       4 0 1.000  4.06  6  0 31.0 31 14 1.645  5.8  8.7
    1 NLDS                       0 1  .000 12.27  1  0  3.2  6  5 2.727  9.8 12.3
    3 ALCS                       3 2  .600  5.20  6  0 36.1 43 21 1.569  3.5  7.7
    1 WS                         0 1  .000  3.29  2  0 13.2 11  5 1.244  4.0  7.9
    

    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original TableGenerated 10/7/2011.

  7. bsputnik - Oct 7, 2011 at 2:56 AM

    GREAT JOB TIGERS!!!!!

  8. capsclothings - Oct 7, 2011 at 4:02 AM

    New York Yankees 59FIFTY Fitted Hats—http://www.caps-clothings.com/HATS/MLB-Baseball-Hats/NewYork-Yankees–hatscaps-cl22.html

  9. txnative61 - Oct 7, 2011 at 4:36 AM

    How about the GM? Tigers acquired Doug Fister and Delmon Young for the stretch, and both delivered for them big. Yankee’s acquired???? Hard to sit still and rest on laurels anymore.

    • bobdira - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:38 AM

      Wow, after spending 196million, you feel they should have gone out and gotten more talent? I think differently. They can continue to overspend for players because they’re the Yankees, but eventually it has to show up on the field and in the clutch. They need a personality makeover.

      They had a good year, 97 wins is nothing to minimize but the leadership of guys like Tino Martinez and Paul O’Neil is missing.

    • yournuts - Oct 7, 2011 at 5:07 PM

      It has nothing to do with acquisitions. The Yankees had a good year, they just lost in a short series to a good Tiger team. Yankee fans are disappointed because we lost to a team that played better than us. We always think we are the better team. To us our accomplishments mean that we count a good season as a World Series wins. Nothing short of a World Series Championship is a good Yankee year. For everybody else a good year is to knock off the Yankees, and we understand that.

  10. pjmarn6 - Oct 7, 2011 at 4:46 AM

    There is absolutely no enthusiasm, hustle, spark or desire to win. Once you have a multimillion dollar guaranteed salary, what enticement is there to go the extra mile. Read the books quoting Mickey Mantle, Billy Martin, Yogi Berra and Phil Rizzuto, they were HUNGRY for the world series because of the extra income it would bring. They WANTED those few thousand dollars more as it meant a lot to them. Today when these players are paid millions what’s a few thousand more?

    • bobdira - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:45 AM

      I think that’s true of most all players, isn’t it? The league minimum is somewhere around 450k (I have’t checked that in a while) so the money is there for all the big names and they play more for pride than money than ever before across the league.

      You’re right though, the money time is during the offseason.

    • soking1223 - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:02 AM

      Blame the Red Socks. If they had been playing the enthusiasm would have been there.

    • bigleagues - Oct 7, 2011 at 3:08 PM

      So, wait . . . $317,000 is a just a measly ‘few thousand more’? That was EACH Giants take from the Winners Pool last season.

      Or how about the $365,000 that each Yankees player took home from 2009?

      In 1958, Mickey Mantle’s player share was $8,759 representing .4% (less than 1/2 of 1% of the total pool).

      In 2009, A-Rod’s player share was $365,059 representing 1.7% of the total post-season pool (more than 4 times the percentage that Mantle and the others were getting back in the good ol’ days).

      Now, that $8,759 World Series bonus for Mantle represented 13.5% of his $65,000 salary.

      While A-Rod’s $365,000 bonus represented 1.1% of his 2009 salary of $33,000,000 (gag, wretch).

      So, yeah – as a percentage of salary Mickey and boys saw the post-season bonus as a nice extra chunk of money . . . but the economics of the game were so very different back then whats the point of comparing it with today’s player?

      If you simply say the guaranteed money is the real problem in the sport, then I would absolutely agree with that statement.

  11. proudlycanadian - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:44 AM

    Yankee fans are quiet here. Unlike Red Sox fans, they are not quick to place the blame on anyone. Personally, I place the blame on the Tigers. They were hot in September and continued to play well.

    • indaburg - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:16 AM

      Yep. You can place direct responsibility for reasons #2, 3, and 4 the Yanks choked on Detroit’s deep and immensely talented pitching staff.

      Rangers – Tigers is going to be a great series. Both teams are hot and their strengths match up well.

    • buzzzsaw - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:34 AM

      Well, there are Bankee fans in Canada ? I did not know the disease had spread beyond the Bronx.

      • proudlycanadian - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:57 AM

        If you have seen my comments this season, you would be aware that I am a Jays fan. I
        prefer the majority of Yankee fans over the majority of Red Sox fans; however, there are some great fans for both teams.

    • svargas1963 - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:35 AM

      Yanks fans only show up to talk SH** before the Yankees get beat. After the whooping, they suddenly disappear into the woodwork.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:08 AM

        I’m here, what now?

      • lukeslice - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:36 PM

        just like all the yankee haters when the yankees win don’t have anything to say…goes both ways ya loser troll

  12. halladaysbiceps - Oct 7, 2011 at 6:57 AM

    Looking through some of these comments, Yankee fans have every right to crucify their team for losing given the amount of money they are being paid. I know when Cliff Lee stunk up Game 2 in the Phils series, I was the first person on this board who buried him for not doing the job he was paid 120 million to do. Same could be said for Teixeira and A-Rod in this series.

  13. 1historian - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:05 AM

    Matthew – you got it 100% wrong. Instead of ranking who should be blamed for the yankees’ loss, you should be ranking those who should take credit for the Tigers’ WIN.

    Proudlycanadian – good point. Let’s blame the Tigers, that way we cover both bases with one swell foop.

    Good to see the yanks lose. yankee fans in Canada are quiet – good for them, but I’ll bet the new york newspapers (and I use the term advisedly) are livid. Meanwhile the boston papers are still turning a whiter shade of purple, but they’ll get over it. I kind of enjoyed the collapse.

    Go whoever is playing the fillies.

    • Francisco (FC) - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:29 AM

      It goes both ways. For there to be winners, there must be losers. It’s fair to say if certain players had performed differently they would be winners instead of losers.

  14. 8man - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:10 AM

    Yankees and their fans are looking forward to having more time to enjoy the fact that the Red Sox missed the playoffs.

    • buzzzsaw - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:36 AM

      Hey,guess what ? Red Sox fans are more than enjoying the Bankees choked again. Go kiss your A-Rod poster, that probably hangs on your ceiling.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:13 AM

        Red Sox fans are more than enjoying the Bankees choked again

        Really, of all the team’s fans the Sox are going to bring up choking? How big was that division lead again?

    • purnellmeagrejr - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:22 AM

      doubt it, dude – cold comfort, indeed.

  15. halladaysbiceps - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:21 AM

    CC Sabathia: “Stop looking at my gut. I’m working on it.”

  16. insi10 - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:24 AM

    I don’t understand … why aren’t we discussing why the Tigers won?

    Speaking of Tigers, this is like golf reporting. So many great young players coming up, and all we read about is Tiger, Tiger, Tiger.

    When will you sports columnists catch on to the fact that most of us want to read about the winners and champions? THEY are the people who give us hope, and who exemplify who we want to be in our own lives — winners.

    Verlander…Cabrera….that’s who we want to read about.

    • brianbowman16 - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:57 AM

      I agree wanting to read about the winners, but there is a SMALL (ok, ok MASSIVE) part of us that rather enjoys seeing the Sawx/yankees fans bitch each other out, because really, they only have march to look forward too now.
      well that and the page six headlines about who arod and jeter are doinking this week,
      so they can make the INFORMED (of course they make informed statements, don’t they?)
      statements and voice informed opinions about the love lives of those two studs who happen to be MULTI-millionaires

  17. honkerdawg - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:31 AM

    Just goes to prove that having the highest payroll doesn’t make you the best TEAM!

  18. nesuperfan - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:33 AM

    Wow, 29 comments in, and not one Yankees’ fan has offered the word “congratulations”.

    • The Science Guy - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:57 AM

      I’ll go. Congratulations Tigers. And good luck over the next couple of weeks.

    • lukeslice - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:38 PM

      my best friend is a Tigers fan. after the game i walked over to his house with a case of his favorite beer. most of us don’t care about congratulating the internet.

  19. mikeclyne1 - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:06 AM

    Any chance another team would be willing to suffer through 6 more years of Arod?

    Mets? Braves? Seattle? Angels? Dodgers? White Sox? SF?

    I like the idea of sending him to the Braves if Chipper hangs them up, send him for Lowe and pack Arods bags with a ton of cash to make the deal work.

    To Seattle for Chone Figgins? To CWS for Adam Dunn?

    I would not resign Swisher either. I might also look to move Tex and go after Pujols or Fielder…

    Any chance the Braves really look at trading Heyward…if so Yankees should jump in on that and give up Nunez + _________ to make it happen and replace an overrated Swisher.

    PITCHING PITCHING PITCHING….

    Yankees Starting Pitchers in WS from 1996-2001
    Pettite, Jimmy Key, Cone, Kenny Rogers, Wells, El Duque, Clemens, Mussina

    With the excpetion of El Duque and Rogers all of these guys were AllStars/HOFers in pinstripes…now we have CC (really good, except in postseason), Freddy Gracia (really…), Nova (has a lot to be optimistic about), AJ (Mr. Consistently Inconsistent).

    Clemens – CC
    Cone – AJ
    Pettitte – Nova
    Wells/Mussina/Key – Garcia

    Baseball is won with great pitchers, Yankees need to find a way to upgrade this staff to compete next year…

  20. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2011 at 8:31 AM

    Just a couple observations from some of the comments…

    First, this is a thread ranking the blame for the loss from the Yankers side. It isn’t a “let’s give the Tigers some credit” thread. That’s for the other thread. When a team loses, there’s blame to go around. I think the blame falls on CC’s shoulders much like the blame for the Phillies if they were to lose tonight will fall on the shoulders of Cliff Lee. These guys are paid a ton of money to win games in the playoffs and when they get 4 runs scored for them, they should win the game. No excuses. No looking at the offense. Lee/Sabathia. Studs.

    Second, how screwed are the Yankers if CC decides to opt out and goes somewhere else. It’s not like the FA pitching market is all that great. Do you want CJ Wilson to be the opening day starter in New York next year? Oh boy. (There’s only a small chance this happens, but it is a possibility. And for those of you saying “There’s no way that happens”, brush up on the Cliff Lee signing)

    Third, the Yankers are a team that hits in bunches or doesn’t really hit at all. They scored 9 and 10 runs to win…and scored 3, 4, and 2 in losses. A-Rod didn’t come through in game 5, but to be honest, who did?

    • purnellmeagrejr - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:25 AM

      interesting – last night I remembered back to 1960 when the Yankees won games by 16 to 3 and 14 to 1 (too lazy to look up exact scores) and still lost the series. Detroit did just enough (And didn’t even need Mazeroski.)

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:43 AM

      Second, how screwed are the Yankers if CC decides to opt out and goes somewhere else

      Extremely, as it has a terrible trickle-down effect. With CC as the #1, Burnett firmly entrenched as the 3/4, you have three roles to fill. Figure Nova/Hughes fill the other two, most likely you’re looking for a strong #2 pitcher. Wilson obviously fits the bill, lefty with not a lot of mileage on his arm. Like him better than Darvish as I just don’t like the different training regimens from Japanese pitchers, also pitching once a week vs every 5 days catches up to them.

      Now if CC opts out, you have to get Wilson and possibly Darvish. More money is spent than keeping CC. You have essentially 3.5 unknowns on the pitching staff.

      Ideally I’d like the Yanks to re-sign CC and possibly either Colon or Garcia. Fill in the rest with Nova, Burnett and Hughes*. If Colon or Garcia falters, you bring up one of the kids (Noesi, Baneulos, Betances or Warren) from the minors.

      *I could see Hughes having a nice bounceback year next year. He had an enormous innings jump from ’09 to ’10. He had nice movement and speed in this postseason, let’s see if it’ll carry over to next year.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:06 AM

        Do you think if CC leaves they empty the farm system for King Felix? Do the Mariners do it?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:11 AM

        Doubt it, only because even if the Yanks emptied the system I don’t think it’ll be enough. Montero is superfluous for the Mariners because he doesn’t catch and they already have Smoak (from the Lee deal). However, even if they took Montero you’re also looking at Betances, Banuelos, and probably one or two more ML players (Gardner maybe? Noesi as well?). That still might not be enough.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:30 AM

        They are the Yankees though…I don’t see them going into opening day with Wilson as their starter. They would have to do something…any other thoughts?

      • deathmonkey41 - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:32 PM

        I’m kind of torn on signing CC to an even bigger contract. He’s been so bad throughout his career in the post season. Yeah, he eats up a lot of innings during the season and usually finishes with 18-20 wins, but is that really worth all that money if he just gets lit up in the postseason?

      • deathmonkey41 - Oct 7, 2011 at 1:16 PM

        “Chris Fiorentino – Oct 7, 2011 at 10:30 AM
        They are the Yankees though…I don’t see them going into opening day with Wilson as their starter. They would have to do something…any other thoughts?”

        No one saw them going into this season with Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon on their starting staff, but alas, there they were. If the pitching isn’t there, the pitching isn’t there. It looks like CJ Wilson is going to be the best free agent pitcher out there.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2011 at 2:24 PM

        DM, the difference is that the Yankees made the mistake of thinking they had Lee in the bag AND they also thought Petitte would change his mind and return. When neither happened, they lucked into Garcia and Colon having fine years for their age and health. If they depend on them again, they probably won’t like what they get. And if they lose CC, I think they would have to empty the minor league system for a true #1. Who that is, I have no idea.

      • deathmonkey41 - Oct 7, 2011 at 7:05 PM

        I’m not disputing that- what I’m saying is that everyone insisted the Yankees would go out and get another pitcher before the trade deadline because there was no way they would finish the season with Garcia and Colon. I think just about every name possible was mentioned, but the Yankees stood put and didn’t do anything stupid. Do I think going out and getting a Wandy Rodriguez would have helped? Probably not and I’m glad they didn’t do it. And although I thought that they put too many eggs in the Cliff Lee basket, now when I look back at it- I’m not really sure there was anyone else available that would have been worth it. It was a shoddy year for free agent pitchers and this year is looking to shake out the same way. So, unless the Mariners all of a sudden decide they’re going to basically give away King Felix, the Yankees pitching staff might not look all that different next year. Cashman has already shown that he won’t give away top prospects for mid-level players. The Steinbrenners might stay in the back seat this offseason since they looked bad with the Soriano signing. If Cashman resigns, they might completely listen to him this year. Personally, I’m bummed the Yankees got knocked out, but hey, they won arguably the toughest division in baseball with Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon. Overall, I don’t think the season was as much a smashing failure as some people are trying to make it.

    • brianbowman16 - Oct 7, 2011 at 10:59 AM

      Very good points sir

  21. urfinished - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:03 AM

    Yanks fan here…the blame goes on the Tigers. They were the better team. And we got lucky Verlander got one start due to the weather. Now the Tigers have Verlander going game one against the Rangers. That should be a great series. I’ll be pulling for the Tigers…got to love Jimmy Leyland.
    A-rod and Tex played deplorable considering they made a combined $55 mil this year. Take Girardi off that list completely…add Swisher. He disappears in big spots. Coming into the playoffs Swish was 0 for 30 with runners in scoring position in the playoffs. How is that possible?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:15 AM

      Coming into the playoffs Swish was 0 for 30 with runners in scoring position in the playoffs. How is that possible?

      Because anything is possible in small sample sizes. The ability of people to not
      draw conclusions off them is an entirely different story.

  22. mrznyc - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:07 AM

    Other than Jeter (.297) and Cano (.302) It’s a bunch of .240, .250, .260 hitters – Add that to a slap-dash pitching staff and what’s the surprise?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:19 AM

      Yanks had a better ERA, FIP, xFIP, and K/9 than the Tigers. They had a better OBP, wOBA, wRC, ISO than the Tigers.

      But considering you think BA is indicative of how good a hitter is, I’m not shocked that you’d be surprised at the above information.

  23. paperlions - Oct 7, 2011 at 9:11 AM

    I think the finding blame exercise is kind of useless for a 5 game series that matched up two teams of similar quality. The last 1/2 of the year Detroit was the better team. Players on both teams are paid to win…and over a 5 game series the Royals (who were 3-3 vs NY this year) could have beaten the Yankees….because baseball really has that much chance involved in individual outcomes….anything can happen over such a short sample.

    This particular exercise is based on the assumption that the Yankees are better and should have won, when there isn’t any evidence that they are the clearly better team. If the Tigers lost, this exercise would not occur because everyone would assume the lost because they aren’t as good as the Yankees.

    The number 1 reason the Yankees lost is that the Tigers are a good team too….

  24. artisan3m - Oct 7, 2011 at 11:14 AM

    The Yankees got out played,out pitched, out hit, and out coached ~ its just that simple. Detroit was the better club and they never entered a game with a sense of entitlement ~ they worked for what they got. Make no mistake, the Yankees are a great ball club, solid in every aspect of the game. But Detroit simply overpowered them. If the Rangers play with the same attitude exhibited by the Yankees ~ “we’ll win it because we are in it” ~ the Tigers will clean their clock also. The ALCS ought to be a classic with the Ranger’s offense and Detroit’s pitching. I’m a Ranger fan to the bone but if the Tigers play Texas with the same intensity they played NY, they will be in the WS.

    • alan3008 - Oct 7, 2011 at 11:19 AM

      A lot of those Detroit players will probably be playing for the Yankees soon, as the Yankees will outbid for their services when their contracts expire. Sad. Baseball is BROKEN.

      • lukeslice - Oct 7, 2011 at 12:40 PM

        ugh. whine more. the tigers are doing just fine on their 10th ranked payroll in the majors dude.

  25. alan3008 - Oct 7, 2011 at 11:15 AM

    Congratulations Detroit!

    I think its great that a team with almost half the payroll knocked off the Yankees, who try to buy a World Series every year by buying up the top talent. The Yankees are at $196 million and Detroit is at $108 million (10th in the ML). Hell, A-Roid, Sabathia and Teixeira combined salaries are 79 million, which is more than the entire team salaries for each of the bottom 12 teams. I hope the Diamondbacks win it all. They are 25th out of 30 teams in the payroll ranking at 53.6 million. Hilarious. Milwaukee is next at 85 million. Now we need Philly to lose. They are third in payroll at 173 mil. St Louis is 12th with a 99 mil. payroll.
    As for A-Roid- Gee he batted .111. How’s that for the 32 million you are paying them, Yankees’ management? You are a joke. I guess A-Roid needs to start popping roids again and he will be okay. And Teixeira was not much better– with a .167 BA for his 23 million salary. HaHaHaHaHaHaHa! Yankee losers go home. Those two players are LAUGHING THEIR WAY TO THE BANK.

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