The Memorial Day is within pitching distance. And the New York Yankees, the team I love (and one with the biggest payroll in business) is in the last place in the big-swinging American League East.
What gives? The haters can list many thousands of them and gloat over the fall of the Yankees. There are injuries galore. There is aFraud. Other bats are feeling powerless. But when you come to think of it — the problem is just one: Mo.
Yankees’ pitching staff over past few years has been dodgy at best. Beyond CC there isn’t much to write home about, though I am damn excited to see Andy back in action. Nova is an emerging talent, but not an ace like David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays. Phil Hughes is enigmatic at best. And how that Pineda trade blew up in our face. In other words, the pitching staff needed the back-end stability that comes from the relief corps.
The 7-8-9 inning punch that came from the likes of Boone Logan/David Robertson/Rafael Soriano and Mariano Rivera propped up a modest pitching line-up well. Mo was so good that he basically insured victory. His abilities inspired confidence in his bullpen room mates (or at least that’s what it seems to me as an amateur fan.)
By keeping the runs in check, the New York offense could counter-punch and beat their rivals despite declining performance from the lines of A-Rod and Mark Teixeira and the catcher-platoon. Once Mo tore his ACL and was out for the entire season, the whole machine came apart.
Hence the Yankees’ Mo problem.
It is not just baseball teams. In startups too, you have this one person who provides the stability and is a key component of the team. You lose that person – mostly in product management or operations – and the whole thing starts to unravel.
As a fan, I hope Yankees will right their ship. As a realist, with every loss to Kansas City Royals, I see that hope slipping away.