Monday, August 23, 2004

The Yankees Week in Review: 8/16-8/22

Lemme steal some of Steven Goldman's thunder, here: if the Yanks don't get an "F" grade for this past week, then you're grading on the wrong curve.

The Yanks went 1-5 on the week, and that one win was a win that almost slipped away.

The Yankee lines on the week:

Offense: .254/.297/.385, 21 runs scored in 6 games.
Defense: 1-5, 7.24 ERA, 43 runs against in 51 innings of work, with 9 homers against.

So the Yanks got outscored 2-1 on the week, and more than half of their runs for the week came in one game. That adds up to a series lost in Minnesota, and a sweep, at home, by the Angels.

Now that the Mariners suck, the Angels could be my Most Hated Team (AL West Division). Seeing Garret Anderson swing against the Yanks gives me the same sickening feeling that I used to get watching Griffey, Jr. paste the Yanks as an M.

Playing with one working arm, Gary Sheffield was the Player of the Week for the Yanks. He hit .348/.400/.826 with three homers and two doubles, leading the team in OPS, runs and RBI. This in a week where only two other batters weren't actively stinking up the joint: Hideki Matsui (.884 OPS) and Suspension-Rod (1.128 OPS in three games).

There is no Pitcher of the Week in the Bronx. Best performance was Jon Lieber, and he allowed 13 baserunners in 6+ innings.

Three awards going out for complete and total cypherdom this week. Paul Quantrill allowed 8 runs in 4 games pitched. He got a total of four outs this week. But at least he belongs on the team, which is more than can be said about C.J. Nitkowski. His line -- five baserunners and two runs versus three outs in four games pitched this week -- were practically a plea to bring back the Run Fairy.

Playing in every game this week, Enrique Wilson posted a .286 OPS. Not batting average, not on-base percentage, OPS. Miguel Cairo's .222 OPS was actually worse this week, but Wilson's overall performance makes his lack of production this week all the more galling. More galling still was that the Yanks might have a better utility infielder than Wilson in the organization (Andy Phillips), that the guy spent two games with the club this week, and that he couldn't get into a game.

Anything else interesting happen this week, other than gatting punked by the Twins and Angels?

Shane Spencer got a minor-league contract, after washing out of the Mets organization with DUI problems. Nice to see that the Steinbrenner Home for Wayward Boys is back in operation. I was afraid that once Darryl Strawberry left the organization, the Boss's missionary spirit would find no outlet.

Mike Mussina re-joined the club after elbow problems, and didn't look good. Is this news?

Yankee Stadium suffered a power outage Friday night. Considering that the Yankees scored four runs for the entire weekend, sometimes, the metaphors are just too obvious.

Looking forward to next week, the Yanks play seven games. They start with a three-game set at Jacobs Field against the Indians, who were resurgent but just got swept by the Twins, to effectively end the AL Central division race. The Yankees then move on to Skydome, hopefully to get healthy against the Blue Jays.

And the Yankees had better get healthy, fast. While they've been dozing, the Red Sox put together a 6 game winning streak, to leave them 5 1/2 games back coming into this week. This is why you can't really declare a division race over in July. If the Yanks keep looking like dogs for the next four weeks, the Red Sox could return to the Stadium with a puncher's chance at the division title.

What do you guys think?


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