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On the Yankees, the Orioles, and baseball’s innate dark humor

Is it possible to get even a little chuckle from watching the Yankees lose to the Orioles?

MLB: New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles Scott Taetsch-USA TODAY Sports

You know that I know that you know the Yankees comparatively STINK against the Orioles. It’s been going on since the dawn of this pandemic. Of course, there the good ol’ days of 2019 when they sent Orioles pitching into oblivion, especially powered by Gleyber Torres. Every series in Baltimore was a home run derby! Dingers were flying left and right. It didn’t matter who was pitching or hitting; balls were flying.

The combination of the juiced ball, red hot Yankees hitters, and the bandbox that used to be Camden was a recipe for many a home run. The team was good for a 143 tOPS+ against the Orioles that season and mashed 61 home runs in 769 plate appearances. Not familiar with tOPS+? It means that the team was 43 percent better than their own average performance. They basically turned into a perennial All-Star against the O’s. It was a sight to see.

But I’m not here to reminisce about that team and their success. I’m here for pure satire. This Yankees team has been miserable in the last two seasons plus this past weekend series against the Orioles. Dare I say it has been laughable? You might not agree, but I get a kick out of watching this team attempt to hit Orioles pitching.

The following are the tOPS+ in the last three seasons against the Orioles from 2020 through this weekend: 89, 114, and 73. No offense to the likes of Bruce Zimmermann, Jordan Lyles, Matt Harvey, Dean Kremer, Keegan Akin, and more, but none of them are above-average pitchers, and it is absolutely absurd that they have held what is supposed to be one of the best offenses in baseball to this low level of production.

Does that not speak to the beauty of baseball though? On any given day, it does not matter who you are! Are you a Quad-A pitcher who shuttles back and forth from the majors to the minors? You can shut down the Bronx Bombers!

Are you a near-10-year veteran cut by several teams in the last few years? You can shut down the Bronx Bombers!

Are you a pitcher with a career ERA above 5.00? It literally does not matter! You can still shut down the Bombers!

Okay, okay. You get the point… I think.

What is baseball without its amazing trait of David vs. Goliath? It holds up at any level too! A pitcher can bring his best stuff and even the greatest of lineups can be held down for nine innings. Or in the case of the New York Yankees, 1,222 plate appearances. Yeah, yeah. I know that there have been some good games against the O’s in the last three seasons, but it doesn’t matter. The team has been poopy in several important series, not just this stinker in April.

All jokes aside, I was pretty confident that the Yankees were going to pound the Orioles this past weekend. Their at-bats had been good against the Red Sox and Blue Jays. There were many hard outs that could’ve sent any game in either direction. However, they were again held down by the mighty forces of the new Camden Yards dimensions and the (apparently) magnificent pitching from the Orioles.

I will maintain the opinion that it is hilarious to watch this team drop series to the O’s, but I may understand why you would think it is extremely embarrassing, April or not. And while it has been amusing, I wouldn’t mind if this was the last of the Yanks’ O’s woes.