Bolstered by a triple effort from star hitter Aaron Judge, the New York Yankees on Wednesday snapped a nine-game losing streak with a much-needed 9-1 victory over the Nationals in the Bronx.
The losing streak was the Yankees’ longest since 1982. Had it reached 10 games with Wednesday’s loss, it would have been their longest skid since 1913.
It was the judge who played the champions – this was the first three-man match in his eight years MLB Career – and novice Luis Severino. Judge, the MLS Player of the Year, has been stellar when healthy in 2023, but a toe injury has cost him a good chunk of the season and revealed the support staff around him is ill-suited to a team with competing aspirations. In this round, the judge had a great night, coming back twice in the first two rounds for the first time in his career. His second blast that night was a grand slam that hit a 437-foot home run and pushed the Yankees’ lead to 6-0:
Judge’s third homer of the night came in the seventh and gave him six RBI for the game. He also became the first Yankee since Alex Rodriguez in 2005 to hit three home runs, one of which was a grand slam, in the same game. He is the first Yankee to have three batters of any kind in a game since teammate Anthony Rizzo last year. After his big night, Judge for the season now averages .279/.406/.645 with 27 home runs in 72 games. In other words, he’s again producing at the MVP level on an average basis, but this aforementioned injury will prevent him from challenging Shohei Ohtani for the highest individual titles in the AL this season.
As for Severino, he pitched 6 2/3 scoreless innings with two hits, two walks, and only one hit allowed. It’s a welcome change in fortunes for Severino, who entered his Wednesday night start with a horrific 7.98 ERA for the season and allowed 26 runs over his last 19 innings. Despite these recent trends, Severino was able to write his first good start since July 17th and his first goalless game since June 24th.
The win moved the Yankees to 61-65 for the season. They remain last in the AL East, and are also 9 and a half games short of last place in the AL. Going into Wednesday, SportsLine gave them less than a 1% chance of making it to the playoffs.
With chronically high payrolls and high expectations in the Bronx, the failures of 2023 have put a strain on manager Aaron Boone and longtime general manager Brian Cashman. Speaking of Cashman, he was asked about the Yankees’ current state Wednesday afternoon before the upset win, and his assessments were candid. across my ageCashman said:
“It’s been a disaster this season. It’s definitely a shock. Absolutely, I don’t think anyone on our side of the fence, from our group of players, from our coaches, from our manager, or even outside the organisation, would have done that. He predicted that.”
While some Yankee fans might argue that they didn’t see at least some of this coming, the “disaster” part is an apt description. On one level, it’s astonishing that a team that won 99 games last season and triumphed in baseball’s toughest division would go down so far, so quickly. On other levels, though, the current Yankee Straights has been cultivated over the course of several years,.
Sure, there’s still time to turn the tide (Cashman himself has pointed out that the Yankees haven’t been officially eliminated yet), but the truth is, this Wednesday team hasn’t won a game since Aug. 11, and it’s gone 12-27 since then. Fourth of July. Long odds have been noted above, and this translates to much higher odds of making changes in the dugout and perhaps even in the front office. A disaster indeed – despite the judge’s continued brilliance at the plate.