The Yankees had a difficult month on the pitching front with some of the stalwarts they had depending on all year suddenly losing form. Let’s see who came to the forefront and who was added to the corps to keep the machine a-running:
The Yankees weren’t great in July but they weren’t that bad either. They won exactly three-fifths (15-10) of their games. They suffered a fall of form from lead pitcher Luis Severino and most of the bullpen which meant the batters needed to turn it up a notch. Let’s see who did:
When I was a boy, at this time of year, you knew which players were going to be in the squads of the significant Association Football teams of the coming season. They were, in short, largely the same players as were contracted to the club the previous year. Growing up in Yorkshire a number of us at school followed Leeds United. The team we knew was Sprake (later Harvey)- Reaney-Cooper-Bremner-Charlton-Hunter-Lorimer-Clarke-Jones-Giles-and Gray. It was almost a playground chant. Anyway, we knew those names by heart. It came as rather a surprise to me a number of years later when I looked back on the line-ups for that era to find that the particular 11 mentioned with Sprake in goal only appeared in a grand total of 1 game for Leeds. That was in a game, in the FA Cup, against Mansfield Town on the 7th of February 1970 which Leeds won 2-0. The 11 mentioned never lined up at the start of a game in the Football League.
How can we account for this?
The answer to this seeming conundrum can be found in two simple words.
Madeley sadly passed on the 23rd of July this year.
The Yankees’ pitching continued on two separate trends in June. The bullpen was continuing to be successful but most of the starting rotation with the exception of Luis Severino was struggling. Add into that a dual hamstring strain which took Masahiro Tanaka on the disabled list and they would inevitably be leaning more and more on that ‘pen
The Yankees were great in May and they managed to continue that excellent trend in June – so important because Boston are showing no signs of slowing down. The Yankees are going to need to keep winning if they are going to finish ahead in this two-horse race. In June, they won exactly two thirds of their games. Let’s see who amongst the batters was lifting the most weight:
The Yankees had set out their stall for 2018 with a starting rotation of Luis Severino – Masahiro Tanaka – CC Sabathia – Sonny Gray – Jordan Montgomery. Now this looked a little weaker than a team who were hoping for a World Series booth might field but it became a more pronounced lack when Jordan Montgomery went onto the disabled list in May. Further problems lay ahead when it was announced that Montgomery would need season-ending Tommy John surgery. What would carry the Yankees forward? Fortunately, the bullpen had begun to meet, if not exceed, all expectations.
May 2018 was a strange month in the annals of the New York Yankees. They had a game which started on the 15th of May and didn’t finish until the 18th of June. To think that in my country of birth, they say that cricket Test matches are long because they end five days after they started.
When the game finally came to its conclusion the Yankees lost to a home run from a player for the Washington Nationals (Juan Soto) who hadn’t made his debut yet. All of this in what was a month which saw the Yankees become once again the lead team in all of Major League Baseball. As I keep saying, in these articles,…confused – you will be.