Yesterday, the Yankees forfeited the rest of the 2011 season. Figuring that since they weren't in first place on May 16th, there really wasn't much left to play for, Joe Girardi made the announcement in the catacombs of Tropicana Field after last night's game.
At least that's what ESPN and the New York sportswriters would have us believe.
Before anyone takes the Jorge Posada nonsense any further, I think these two quotes sum up the situation perfectly, and are really all that anybody ever needed to say about the situation (thanks LoHud):
"We’re a unique organization because we’ve been in a position to be able to retain some unbelievable legends for this franchise," Brian Cashman said. "And you pay honor to that at all times, but we also have to honor the 2011 season or whatever season you’re playing, and that at times can conflict with what people have done in the past. You have to do what’s best for your team in the present, and sometimes that puts you in difficult circumstances, and then you have to deal with them the best you can, all parties involved.
"The reality of it is, my job is to manage to win today," (Joe) Girardi said. "And I have to deal with that. And I try to show respect, and I try to show sensitivity and truly care about my players, and that’s the things that I have to balance, and that’s not always easy because players always think they can still do it at the same level or today’s going to be the day that it turns around for me. If they didn’t think that, they wouldn’t have been successful in their career, so that’s not always easy. And I’ve told my players on a number of occasions, I’m doing what I think is best at the time. I would never do anything to try to purposely hurt a player or to embarrass a player or to take playing (time).
It has been a bad few days to be a Yankees fan. Between Derek Jeter's lack of hitting, the aforementioned Jorge Posada drama, and a pretty lousy team record in May, things seem pretty bad. But a lot of this is just noise. The sportswriters need to talk about something, and the bloggers still need to write even when the stuff on the field speaks for itself.
The season is long, and it doesn't end in May. On this date in 2009, the Yankees were in 3rd place, "just" 20-17, 4.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays. It doesn't mean history will repeat itself, but it doesn't hurt to remember that 6 of the 8 teams that were in playoff positions on that date wound up staying home in October.
The season is long. Players slump. All of these things happen, and will continue to happen. Just stop and think about that. I'll put my money where my mouth is and tell you why the glass may be half full with Jorge Posada at 11.