Via the Daily News -
The Yanks and Mets often seem to operate not in separate leagues, but unrelated universes. One payroll in excess of $200 million, another failing to crack $90 million. Established, celebrity ballplayers in the Bronx, random lineups and Kyle Farnsworth in Queens.
But while the Mets have spent too many years chopping payroll and selling fans on prospects who might or might not succeed (nothing to see here, folks, but look! We have a phenom in Triple-A!), this Subway Series has presented them with the chance to contrast what they are trying to build with a team that might be wilting into an aging, expensive disaster.
It takes less than one minute to walk from the home clubhouse to the visiting one on the lower level of Yankee Stadium, but the difference in mood was jarring, during the first half of this year’s series.
On the first base side on Tuesday afternoon, you had Carlos Beltran, 37, standing at his locker, explaining that he would need significant surgery to remove a bone spur from his elbow, if a cortisone shot would not work. This news was bleak; if Beltran avoids the surgery, but still feels pain, his production could suffer greatly.
“That would be a tough injury,” another player explained. “If you can’t get full extension, and you’re swinging a little bit down here instead of up there, that could be the difference between a foul ball and a home run.”
You also had Ichiro Suzuki, 40, holding his own mini-news conference a few feet away, explaining that his sore back would probably prevent him from playing. And a few minutes after that, you had Girardi announcing that an important reliever, Shawn Kelley, was on the disabled list with his own back injury. Oh, and CC Sabathia was visiting the dreaded Dr. Andrews for a follow-up knee exam.
After the game, you had Kelley providing a perfect summary of his team’s crisis: “It’s almost like injuries are contagious right now.”
“When you become older, your body doesn’t necessarily bounce back as quick and heal as quick,” Girardi said, clearly knowing that his team had arrived at a tough moment, clearly unable to explain exactly what a manager might do about it.
It’s really hard to say that the Yankees first quarter of the 2014 season has been a success. Worse, it doesn’t seem that it will be getting better any time soon.
At this rate, 2013-2014 could be the Yankees worst back-to-back full seasons since 1991-1992. And, if you use pyth W-L%, then these two years are just as bad as 1991-92. Yet, no one in the organization will be held accountable – as always, in life after George.