For the first time since 2008 the New York Yankees have missed the playoffs, it seems that Father Time has indeed caught up with them.
The team was plagued by age related injuries throughout the season. Third baseman Alex Rodriguez struggled to overcome hip replacement surgery, while shortstop Derek Jeter battled osteoporosis. Other signs of aging were evident during games.
Players forgetting signs and randomly wandering off bases were all too common sights to Yankee fans. Even the way they wore their uniforms was impacted. While other players from around the league would sometimes wear their socks high, Yankee players began to wear their pants high, some even having their pants above their navels.
Off the field habits were also affected. Rather than hanging in bars late night, players could be spotted going to Denny’s for their early bird specials. Entertainment choices also reflected the effects of aging. Even choices in female companionship underwent a change. The clubhouse TV would often be turned to such unusual fair as The Golden Girls and Murder She Wrote. Occasionally the appearance of Bea Arthur or Angela Lansbury would result in cat calls and wolf whistles.
Through it all, the Yankees continued to fight. Manager Joe Girardi said, “I’m proud of the way our guys battled. Many was the time one of our guys would strike out and then angrily shake his fist at the opposing pitcher. Then, of course I’d have to go out and help him find his way back to our dugout.”
So despite an enormous payroll, the Yankees appear to be in trouble for the short-term. The ironically named Yankee gm, Pat Cashman, was asked where the Yankees would go from here. Cashman replied, I think a move to the National League might be in order, after all it’s the seniors circuit. When told the National League was called the senior circuit because it was formed before the American League Cashman responded, “Whoops. I guess I’ll have to see if Roger Clemens will come out of retirement again.”
Yankee fans can expect an interesting year in 2014.