Yankees Win Series Attitude War

Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros and Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees ~ in a lighter moment back in 2017.

The New York Yankees rode into town this first time in 2018 and played ball like cold-blooded killer squad they are. They play with purpose and intent, talent and intelligence, size and power, and with an almost sublime sense of knowing when to shoot, when to strangle, and when to flat-out clobber.

They had a little trouble with those killer starters who pitch for the Astros, but the Houston pen was back on its heels and broadly unable to keep the Astros hopes alive in close games – once the stars in our Texas night – were no longer fresh and bright. In fact, we could not refrain from wonder. – Why doesn’t Harris also punch himself out on the way to the dugout as he concludes his walk to the dugout in the 9th of Game 4? – He didn’t do it as dramatically as Giles did in Game 3, but he had one of those nights in which all three of the missing “Yankees-Win” runs had now either reached base or scored.

If Giles really deserved to scourge himself so cruelly for human error, shouldn’t the same penalty fall to all others who have a bad day on the job. – For that matter, when is the last time you punched yourself out at 5:00 PM for showing up for work at 9:00 AM that same day and then causing your company certain profits because of your failed performance? – And did the story of your bad day make the evening TV news or the next day’s newspaper?

And then there was the matter of that missing Astros offense – the one that gathered to bedevil the Red Sox, Yankees and Dodgers in the 2017 Playoffs and World Series in a  stream of confidence and dynamic leadership and hitting. – It was then an everyday thing that now only blinks – and then disappears again – in 2018.

And it’s not just one thing. It’s several:

(1) There’s been a Major Shift, from Hope in 2017 to Expectation in 2018. Jose Altuve is no longer the baseball “small wonder man.” He now bears the burden of his new contract. – Now we all expect big things of him – and these great expectations are on the level of those that probably afflicted Moses a long time ago.

Example: Imaginary Monologue, God to Moses, After Moses started hitting on Ramses for Jewish Liberty from Egypt, but before he had scared the Pharaoh enough to get his way:

God: “Hear me loud and clear. Don’t waste your worries on the wrong issue. You have nothing at all to fear from the Egyptian Pharaoh. I have an offer in mind now that he will not be able to refuse. It is an offer that will change even the feelings of the Israelites toward you. – Right now you possess the power of novelty in their eyes. – You are a man who can actually get an audience with the king in the name of their freedom. – It is an attitude toward you that will continue to grow among the people until you (with a little help from Me) get the people what they want from your next certain-to-be-accepted offer.

“Once that offer is delivered, the people’s expectations of you shall change. You will no longer simply be the miracle man who gets them out of Egypt, you will become the man who leads the people to the dessert with that great expectation now firmly bowed to your neck as — the man that God sent to lead them to The Promised Land. — And no achievement short of that goal ever shall be considered acceptable.”

Altuve’s task covers arguably smaller spiritual ground, but its dynamic change feature is the same. Until the Astros dramatically won the 2017 World Series behind the mojo generated by Altuve and Company, they were the fans’ great hope. And like it or not, the fans of 2018 now expect results that the fans of 2017 merely hoped to see.

(2) The hungry dynamic of offensive play needs to return. Let’s hope that much of its’ current absence is due to celebratory hangover from the party that never has stopped since the night of November 1, 2017. How could it? The TV games still show the stream of George Springer shouting into the ear of Josh Reddick on the street in Houston during the day of the November victory party. – The 2018 Yankees don’t play like a team that expects to win by showing up. The 2018 Yankees show up to crush whatever’s in their way.

(3) The bottom three hitters in the 2018 Astros lineup, plus Evan Gattis batting in a higher up spot, are now showing up as a weakness that an intelligent foe can again use to pitch around the potentially more dangerous batters in the Astros game plan. Maybe we will see the younger Mr. Tucker up here sooner rather than later. The hitting has to come around soon. Great starters, week relievers, and no hitting on the level we’re seeing now could sink the ship of a repeat title, if we are still seeing these same patterns by the All Star break.

 

********************

Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle

 

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4 Responses to “Yankees Win Series Attitude War”

  1. Tom Hunter Says:

    Let’s just hope that the Astros don’t have to wander in the wilderness for forty years or the baseball equivalent before getting another glimpse of the Promise Land in October.
    Verlander’s brilliant eight inning performance giving up no runs and striking out 14 fell in he midst of the 28 inning drought with no runs scored by the Astros. A plague of goose eggs!

  2. Bill McCurdy Says:

    LARRY DIERKER writes the following from his iPad
    May 3, 2018:

    “It’s May 3, we’re in first place playing .600 baseball. I’m frustrated by other things.”

    Larry Dierker
    49sfastball.com

    • Fred Soland Says:

      I agree with Larry. No one every won a pennant in May. This is not a sprint but rather a long distance marathon. This team is too well put together to swoon for long. Keep the faith!!

  3. Anthony Cavender Says:

    Today, May Fourth, is Star Wars Day in the Galaxy, so let’s proceed at Warp Speed for the rest of the season. A few hits would help.

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