After multiple playoff exits and back-to-back frustrating seasons, will the Yankees make changes to their roster or coaching staff?
In the midst of a downward trend over the past four seasons, you would think the New York Yankees would eventually put their foot down and try to get some new blood in the manager’s office. Clearly, whether it’s Aaron Boone’s fault or not, the team has underperformed over the past two seasons. You’d assume that this would spark a change. Perhaps send a message to the players and to the fans that the franchise is simply not doing enough to not warrant a change. Apparently, however, a change may not be on the horizon.
Two Disappointing Yankees Seasons
The Yankees won 100+ games in back-to-back seasons in 2018 and 2019, which, obviously, is great. Since 2020, however, the team has slumped heavily. Last season, in an abbreviated 60-game schedule, the Yankees went an underwhelming 33-27. They finished 7.0 games behind the Tampa Bay Rays for first place in the AL East and beat out the Blue Jays by just one game for second in the division. If it wasn’t for the expanded playoff format in 2020, the Yankees would’ve missed the Postseason entirely. They eventually lost to Tampa in the ALDS
This past season, the Yankees had an even earlier exit and made the playoffs by just one game. On July 4th, the Bombers sat at an incredibly average 42-41. They eventually finished the season with 92 wins, which, all things considered, is far from awful. However, considering the expectations the Yankees entered the season with, losing the division by almost 10 games two straight seasons and barely making the playoffs both years is beyond disheartening.
Boone here to Stay?
On Tuesday, a report came out from ESPN that the Yankees are actually inclined to keep Boone and owner Hal Steinbrenner doesn’t blame the manager for the team’s underperformance but rather blames the players, who greatly underachieved as well as the team as a whole. Particularly, Gleyber Torres, Gio Urshela, and DJ LeMahieu, among others, had uninspiring campaigns.
My take, however, is that, although it is completely valid to blame the players for underperforming, a change in the locker room can go a long way and send a message to said players that they do indeed need to perform better. If Boone does return, and it looks like he will, I fear there’s a chance that this lackadaisical philosophy will persist within the organization, resulting in another lost year.
Alternatively, there is a very good chance Steinbrenner plans on making changes to the team to light a fire under them. If it’s not the manager, Steinbrenner could always look on making a few big splashes this offseason to bring in new talent and blood into the clubhouse, in hopes that it might help turn the team around.
This winter, a plethora of all-star and former all-star shortstops are set to hit the open market, including Corey Seager, Carlos Correa, and Javier Baez. It wouldn’t shock me, as a response to this past season, that Steinbrenner makes a push for one of those players.
One thing’s for certain, however: a change is needed. Clearly, the philosophy and motive in the Yankees’ clubhouse isn’t working, and now, fans will look to their owner in hopes that he recognizes the urgency of their situation.