The Yankees' Dynasty Is Officially Dead.
NY is older than Cicely Tyson, in fourth place in the AL East and fading out of playoff contention. Derek Jeter’s ironman body has turned to putty, and A-Rod’s shamelessly trying to hang on to a diminishing legacy.
This next one is going to hit you like blowing exotic weed through a French horn.
For the first time in his illustrious 17-year career as Yankees closer, Mariano Rivera—The Bill Russell of MLB Fireman—blew three saves in a row.
The first one was Wednesday against the Chicago White Sox. Then on Saturday, Detroit’s Miggy Cabrera launched one on him in the ninth, but the Yankees bailed Rivera out with a win. Same thing on Sunday afternoon, as Cabrera and Victor Martinez went back-to-back on Rivera to tie it up, before Brett Gardner smacked a walk-off in the bottom of the ninth.
Closing is a tough job, especially for a 43-year old coming off knee surgery. But the way Rivera has breezed through the first 120 games of the season, nobody expected this wicked pothole during his farewell tour.
Mr. Automatic has become Mr. Dramatic, and he’s doing things he’s never done before -- not in a dope way, though. According to Yankees announcer Michael Kay on YES Network, in the 56 previous times Rivera faced the Tigers, he’s given up a total of two homers. This weekend, he’s already served up three ninth-inning meatballs to Detroit. It’s only the fifth time in Rivera’s career, and just the third time since ’96, that he’s given up two homers in a game. He’s never even given up dingers in consecutive save situations before.
It’s true Rivera has to fall from Mount Olympus to ever be bad, and he’s already announced his retirement, so he’s playing with house money. But if the Bronx Bombers have to worry about the last man to wear No. 42 failing in the clutch, then rebuilding mode is officially in effect...whether Yankees fans want to accept it or not.