The 2022 Yankees are not going to go down as a beloved Yankees’ team. Putting up 99 wins and making the ALCS is hardly a bad season, but between the decisions made surrounding the team and the way the year played out, it sure feels like they were bad right now.
The real big issue with the team was really in their streakiness. It’s hard to remember the feeling now, but for a while it felt like this Yankees’ team has potential to be a special one. Through June, they were on pace for over 115 wins. Sure in retrospect, there are signs that that maybe wasn’t always going to keep up, but it was a lot of fun watching them in those early months.
However, the reason they won’t go down as fondly remember team was from July on. The went just 43-42 from the start of July, and that even included a good September where they put up a 17-8 record. An AL East lead that reached as high as 15.5 games fell as low as 3.5 games. While the strong September allowed the Yankees to end up clinching the division with some room to spare, things got way more shaky than they should’ve been, and then the playoffs were pretty brutal to watch.
A key word for the 2022 Yankees is “streaky.” While they had six different win streaks of at least five games, they also had multiple stretches where they barely even averaged two runs per game over the course of a week. It was infuriating.
With that in mind, let’s see where they land in Yankees’ history in terms of pure streakiness.
One good candidate to rival them is, well, the 2021 Yankees. From August 14-27, they went on a 13-game winning streak that took them from two back in the AL Wild Card race to 6.5 games clear. It was the longest winning run from the franchise for over 60 years, and took them from somewhat of a playoff contender to a team that seemed potentially dangerous.
They then immediately followed that streak up with a 2-11 stretch that included a seven-game losing streak, their longest of the year. That one brought them back to earth, and while they did still make the AL Wild Card Game, doomed them to a meek early exit.
Over the season, the 2021 Yankees had 12 different winning streaks of at least three games and nine different losing streaks of at least three. They were an impressive case of one day’s play not necessarily meaning anything for the next day.
For the most part, the others teams that have put up the longest winning streaks in Yankees’ history put up some pretty impressive records. The 1926 team, who had a 16-game winning streak, which is the third longest in franchise history, did put up a record good enough to win the AL, but 91-63 is not otherworldly.
That 16-gamer was not the only long winning streak they put up. They also had ones that lasted eight games, and another that went for 11. Those three streaks represent 38% of the wins they put up that year. Obviously they won all those games, so you can’t take them away, but outside of those streaks their record was 56-63. On only four other occasions that season did they win more than three games in a row. They didn’t particularly have any long losing runs that year, but they were just mostly a .500 team outside three crazy stretches.
The 1995 Yankees’ team is a fairly beloved one for breaking a long playoff drought, winning the first early AL Wild Card, and getting Don Mattingly his first playoff appearance. They managed to do that thanks to an incredible September/October where they went 22-6. Going into that month, they were under .500 at 57-59 and behind several teams in the playoff race.
That got to a point where they needed that incredible stretch run because of streakiness in the early part of the season. They got off to an impressive start, going 10-5 in their first 15 games. Not even two weeks after that, they were 12-12. After that until September, they kept going back and forth between a couple games over .500 to a couple games under. From late May to late August, they spent the whole time somewhere between four games over .500 to nine under.
The 1924 Yankees played in 18 different streaks where they won or lost at least three games in a row. That accounts for 72 of their games, meaning they spent nearly half of their season in the midst of some sort of streak.
There are undoubtedly other Yankees’ teams that you could call streaky, but those were some of the standouts. Either way, it would be nice to not have another Yankee season play out in quite the way that 2022 did.