The 2013 Yankees were far from the worst in the team’s history. In recent years, sure, but in history, they are not. It was definitely the dumbest season in team history, though.
The Yankees finished the 2013 season 85-77, and six games out of the second Wild Card spot. The fact that we look back on that as the worst season in recent memory shows how lucky we’ve been as Yankees fans.
The annoyance of that season was not the win-loss record. It was the constant churning of randos that the Yankees had to use, mostly due to injuries. Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Curtis Granderson, Francisco Cervelli, and Kevin Youkilis went into spring training all penciled in as regular starters. Between the five of them, they played 138 combined games. Alex Rodriguez only appeared in 44 games after missing the start of the season because of a January surgery.
Whenever it seemed like the Yankees were getting back to somewhat of a normal lineup, someone would go down. The most used batting order for the season was only repeated in four games. Needless to say, a lot of players passed through New York, and a lot of them weren’t exactly great.
With the Yankees’ lineup having the potential to be great this season, let’s go back five years and look at some of the nonsense the Yankees had to field that year.
It’s Opening Day and things already look bad. Vernon Wells was a late spring training add because the Yankees were in a pinch and needed an outfielder. Naturally, he bats fifth on Opening Day. Ben Francisco is DHing after a 2012 where his OPSed .670.
Shockingly, the Yankees scored just two runs and lost.
A lot of the lineups the Yankees rolled out this year looked like away interleague lineups, but this one actually was one. A 3-4-5 stretch of Wells, Lyle Overbay, and David Adams is not exactly fearsome. Also, would you believe if I told you Hiroki Kuroda has better career hitting numbers than either Reid Brignac or Chris Stewart? He doesn’t, but that probably doesn’t sound that far-fetched.
The top seven of this lineup would actually be fairly decent in like 2009. However, it was not 2009. Also, Lyle Overbay was playing right field.
This was the second game of a doubleheader where the Yankees used fairly similar lineups. This one gets included because the Yankees lost 6-0, which seems very 2013. It features Thomas Neal hitting fifth, because why not. The late game pinch hitting appearance from Zoilo Almonte was his major league debut. It, like the rest of his major league career, didn’t exactly work.
BRENT LILLIBRIDGE HITTING SECOND
Somehow the Yankees won this game.
We started with opening day, now let’s end with game 162. The Yankees have added Brendan Ryan to their collection of non-hitting shortstops. John Ryan Murphy is vaulted into the second slot despite getting just three hits in his first 19 major league at bats.
To cap off 2013, the only players to appear in the starting lineups of both game one and game 162: Vernon Wells and Eduardo Nunez. Just as we all expected.