Thursday, September 15, 2016
KUDOS TO YOU, BRIAN CASHMAN!
Give credit when credit is due, and Brian Cashman is owed a lot of it right now. This is a very different team compared to what we had in May. The Yankees had a pathetic 9-17 start and even imagining that the Yankees could still be in the hunt for a wild card was a pipe dream. It really shows you how with risk there can be big rewards.
July feels like it was so long ago now. I guess looking at all of the changes it is a long time ago, and hopefully it stays there in the past. July may feel like a different life for this team but I remember the feeling of defeat I had after being swept by the last place Tampa Bay Rays. How do you get swept by a last place team?! Playoff teams don't do that so Cashman did what some fans just didn't agree with.....he had a massive fire sale. The Yankees are retooled.
Now fast forward to September and the Yankees are no longer known for having a "three headed monster" of a bullpen. There is no more Aroldis Chapman or Andrew Miller. Ivan Nova is no more. The Yankees packaged Carlos Beltran, the teams leader in hits for a younger future. Then, Alex Rodriguez, a veteran leader on this team is also gone and ready to start a new chapter. It's the beginning of the NEW Yankees.
Now, this NEW Yankees team is climbing up the standings led by new and hungry faces like Gary Sanchez, Tyler Austin and Rob Refsnyder again. Star power is now no longer a familiar veteran face. Now it is youth that has fought hard. This team has nothing to lose and they are playing with a "go big or go home" attitude.
I'm not ready to go home yet. The Yankees aren't ready to go home yet and they are proving everyone that with the impressive 25-15 record over the last 40 games but as impressive as that is this team has a brutal schedule for the rest of the season. For the last 17 games the Yankees need to be ready. Take no prisoners! The Red Sox and the Orioles are not going to go easy on us. This is a different team that the Red Sox will be playing for 4 games. With any luck, the Yankees could close that 4.5 game gap. If they play their cards right, they could make this race even tighter.
Cashman has rebuilt this team. I have been critical of him in the past but he gambled this time and it paid off big. Not even he expected the Yankees to be where they are right now. It's exciting to see what this team really can be. The future is bright but as we work our way to seasons beyond it's time to finish BIG. Chase that wild card, but also chase for the extra bragging rights to knock down some of our rivals.
This team has proven that anything is possible and Cashman has proven once again, that sometimes the unpopular decisions are the right ones to make. Kudos to you, Cashman. Bring on these last few games against the AL East....and win!
--Jeana Bellezza, BYB Senior Writer & Editor
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