Give the Yankees credit for making things interesting.
Despite selling at the deadline and beginning August more than five games back of the second wild card, New York entered last Sunday a game behind and in position to make a run. The impossible seemed possible.
Nearly a week later, the impossible seems once again impossible. Or, to get pithy about it, the Yankees’ postseason hopes were dashed on Saturday.
The Yankees blew another lead in a loss to the Red Sox, dropping to 1-6 over their last seven games. As a result, New York is now 4 1/2 games back in the wild-card race. Just as importantly, the Yankees trail three other teams in the standings: the Tigers, Mariners, and Astros. Weird things happen all the time in baseball, but the Yankees would require divine intervention for everything to fall their way over the ensuing two weeks — and even that might not be enough.
In addition to another frustrating defeat, the Yankees lost two starters to injuries. Center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury and second baseman Starlin Castro each departed Saturday’s game. Ellsbury hurt his patella on a slide into the wall, and later exited after claiming he couldn’t run. The Yankees are reportedly optimistic he’ll miss only a few days. Castro, meanwhile, felt something “pop” while running the bases — an injury initially diagnosed as a strained hamstring. Both have returned to New York to undergo tests.
While neither Ellsbury nor Castro is having an outstanding season — they entered Saturday with OPS+ of 90 and 94, respectively — it’s always difficult to replace two up-the-middle starters, especially with just 14 games remaining. If the Yankees have to turn to Rob Refsnyder, Mason Williams, or whatever combination of reserves you like, then that’s a considerable downgrade — and another blow to their chances of pulling off a miracle run.
So, yeah, time — and hope — is running short for these Yankees.
Source: CBS Sports Headlines / With two injuries and another loss, the wheels are coming off for the Yankees