So how do nights like last night happen?
It seems to come down to consistency – night to night and at-bat to at-bat.
Despite a well above average lineup, the Yankees have been more or less league average with runners in scoring position. They’re slightly below middle-of-the-pack in batting average, slightly above in on-base percentage, and near the top in slugging percentage. Their overall numbers dip when runners get to second base and beyond, and last night they went 1-for-9 in those scoring opportunities.
“That’ll change,” Joe Girardi said. “It goes in cycles. Some days you go 6-for-8 and then other days you go 1-for-9. You’d like to say you can get three or four every night, but it’s not going to happen. … We’re a club that hits the ball out of the ballpark for the most part, and we have guys who hit the ball in the gap, and we haven’t seemed to do that on a consistent basis with runners in scoring position.”
The Yankees also have an all-or-nothing offense at this point. They’ve scored at least five runs in all but one of their 20 wins. They’ve scored three runs or less in nine of their past 10 losses. Some nights the offense shows up, and the Yankees win. Some nights it doesn’t, and the Yankees lose.
“You’d like to be consistent,” Derek Jeter said. “You say the same thing every year. It seems like when guys get hot everyone gets hot. Sometimes when you scuffle, a lot of people scuffle. You just have to keep things in perspective. Pitchers on the other teams have jobs to do too. We’d like to come out and score a lot of runs every day, but it’s not always going to be the case. Obviously we’re a whole lot better when up and down the lineup we’re swinging well.”
Associated Press photo