The Yankees find themselves in a threatening 0-2 hole with Justin Verlander looming tomorrow night on the mound in Detroit; yet in a season of inconsistency, improbability and the unexpected, are you really willing to count the Yankees out now?
The 2012 postseason has been one of the worst hitting displays that the New York Yankees have put on over a seven-game stretch of playoff baseball in a very, very long time. This team is not hitting unless it's the ninth inning or unless the player's name is Raul Ibanez.
Even worse, the Yankees are now without their captain, Derek Jeter, whose leadership and on-the-field results have inspired and carried this team so far. It's time to see the Bombers' mettle and toughness as they're forced to carry on without him.
For the fans, it's been heart-wrenching, dramatic and just plain tough to watch this vaunted, home run hitting lineup bow out so meekly against pitchers like Doug Fister and Anibal Sanchez who have been good but far from great.
For a team that led the majors in homers and for a hitter like Robinson Cano, who had the hottest bat on the planet entering the playoffs, it feels as though much of the Bombers' damage has been self-inflicted in these key moments over the last week.
Of course, the Yankees are in the ALCS right now so the good news is that we were not left to write their 2012 season obituary after a series loss to the division-rival Orioles. The Yankees' pitching has been outstanding. CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Andy Pettitte and Phil Hughes have been dynamic and on their games.
Kuroda's seven inning, 11-strikeout performance on short rest yesterday against Detroit will surely go down as one of the better pitching performances in recent memory for the Yankees in the postseason.
The only one better than that this postseason was by the Yankee ace, Sabathia, whose complete game gem Friday night is the biggest reason why the Bombers are still playing baseball right now.
This series has this awful feeling, down 0-2, backs against the wall and the biggest bats in the Yankee lineup not hitting and looking lifeless, clueless and helpless at the plate. Time stops for no man and the Yankees have this off-day today to figure out what's gone wrong and how they can fix it.
Listed in the forthcoming slides are the postseason grades so far for the Yankees through seven games of the 2012 MLB postseason. The Yankees pitchers will be pleased, but the Yankee hitters will be hoping that things can only get better.
They need to soon, otherwise it should be a long, painful offseason in the Bronx.