You know, baseball is such a weird thing. Month-to-month, season-to-season; you never know (at least we never know) what players and teams are going to capture our interests.
There’s always the usual suspects. But then for the first time in our lifetime, low and behold; there’s a team playing in the Bronx that we’re rooting for. And it feels almost weird.
Obviously it starts with Aaron Judge. From there, there’s a trickle down to Luis Severino, Dellin Betances, and Gary Sanchez. We’ve always liked Aroldis Chapman, who has been shaky as shit when we’ve seen him in action this year.
But then there’s the fun little Yankees role players. There’s light-bulb head Brett Gardner. There’s little Ronald Torreyes – who we really only noticed because he’s about the size of an Aaron Judge bowel movement. There’s Didi Gregorius – we’ve always enjoyed his flair and flash while just going about his business quietly. Aaron Hicks is a joy to watch and looks like a prototype two-hole hitter.
Then there’s some fun but oddity type veterans. Chris Carter who is mostly worthless but hits video game style homers to redeem himself. CC Sabathia who has climbed back from alcoholism. Matt Holliday, who is the perfect player at this stage in his career and the role they have him in.
The Yankees don’t feel like a villain anymore. They’re not bought. A lot of these guys are kids. They’re a year – at least and we would argue two – ahead of schedule.
The bullpen is a mess. Joe Girardi does what he can to fuck things up sometimes and is far from perfect for a guy who has won so much at the highest levels. This probably all fades sometime in August or September. You know they’re not a World Series threat if you’re realistic. But shit, these guys are fun! It’s okay for the first time in my life to have Michael Kay and YES on my television each night around 7:00 and root for my wife and father-in-law’s team!
And it’s truly good for baseball. Hopefully the Yankees realize they don’t need the mega-contract and baggage that comes with a Manny Machado or a Bryce Harper and continue to build the right way from within. That probably won’t happen, but that doesn’t stop us from enjoying the high-character group that is the 2017 Yankees.
Speaking of their high-character: tonight it was on display. A true classic game that was delayed by weather had Yu Darvish and Masahiro Tanaka squaring off. The Yankees have been in a slide. All hope looked lost even after they waited out Darvish and got him out of the game.
Chapman enters, surrenders the lead 1-0 with a sloppy inning; only to be bailed out by a huge Gardner home run in the bottom of the ninth, and eventually winning the game in the bottom of the tenth by a scrappy Torreyes’ single.
The Yankees are fun damnit. And you’re cheating yourself if you don’t enjoy them a little.