Friday, July 11, 2014

How Depressing Did This Yankees Season Just Get?

I've raved about Masahiro Tanaka a few times on this blog and many more times in drunken discussions of the merits of his splitter. This morning brought news that he'll miss at least six weeks with a partially torn UCL, a.k.a. The Power Pitcher's Worst Nightmare. If he can't rehab the injury, he might need Tommy John surgery in this season that has been described as the one Tommy John took. Really crappy news.

So, barring a miracle, the Yankees' season is over. They're missing 4/5 of their starting rotation, and the 1/5 that is still pitching happens to be their oldest starter (Hiroki Kuroda, 39). Their offense, meanwhile, ranks in the bottom third in the majors in park- and league-adjusted performance. Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran have been huge disappointments, their starting middle infielders should be scooting around in wheelchairs, and a position loaded with league-wide talent (third base) has once again become a black hole for the Yanks.

On the bright side, I'm Nostradamus. Here's what I wrote about Tanaka back in January:

Tanaka better prepare himself for seven years of forced, sometimes insensitive Japanese jokes and puns. After a bad outing: "TANAKA SURRENDERS AFTER A-BOMB". After a strong playoff start: "TANAK-OUT PUNCH!". After an arm injury: "MASA SHAME". It should be pretty fun.

I've had a lot of fun with the New York tabloids' punny treatment of Tanaka. However, my prediction never fully came to fruition until this morning. Here's a screenshot from SportsCenter:

A big thank you to Ray Romano's Newsday for making this depressing morning a bit more bearable. Unfortunately, I don't think we'll be seeing any more Tanaka-themed back pages for quite some time.

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