Yankees Hot Corner – Aaron Boone needs to stop over-managing
The New York Yankees lost to Oakland Athletics this afternoon, 6-3, and they are now in danger of playing the Wild Card game at the Oakland Coliseum. While the Yankees are still three and a half games up in the American League Wild Card the lead dwindles with each game they squander against a lesser team. It also doesn’t help that the Yankees are now only 2-3 against the A’s. With each loss Oakland creeps closer to hosting the Wild Card game.
The reason why the Yankees have been so poor of late (splitting with the Tigers this weekend, losing two of three to the Chicago White Sox) is that Aaron Boone is over-managing once again. Most have tried to give him the benefit of the doubt, but he’s making the same mistakes over and over. While it was nice to see him show some fire and get tossed for a game and suspended for another, Boone has a lot to learn as manager. Here are some of his most common mistakes;
Trying to get everyone in the bullpen in
Aaron Boone has a tendency to put in his relievers at odd times. He did it on Monday when he trusted A.J. Cole in a one run game instead of putting in a fresh Jonathan Loaisiga, who wound up pitching in the game anyway. He put in A.J. Cole multiple times for no reason at all other than he wanted to get him in.
A.J. Cole has proven that he is not the pitcher the Yankees thought they traded for, and they desperately miss Adam Warren. The biggest mistake this week? Moving Dellin Betances from his comfortable spot in the 8th inning to a closer role in the 9th. Betances wound up blowing the game by giving up a two run home run and then a solo shot to turn a two run lead into a loss. Boone could have easily used Zach Britton in this spot, as he is an actual closer.
Too much Greg Bird
Even though Luke Voit has rightly played the majority of games in the past few weeks (he’s been hot) we have still seen too much of Greg Bird. Boone has a tendency to also give guys days off when they’re hot and don’t need them. He did that with Neil Walker. He did that with Didi Gregorius.
Greg Bird shouldn’t be a part of this team anymore, plain and simple. He’s been given too many opportunities to prove himself and he’s not just in a rut. He has been given the keys to the kingdom and broke his ankle on the way up the castle steps. He’s been in a two for forever slump and it just didn’t work out the way the Yankees or Bird wanted.
Not knowing when to pull the plug
Perhaps Boone’s biggest mistake all season has been his inability to read a game. He seems to read more into the deep analytics of pitchers facing batters a third time around, and all that jazz. The issue is that sometimes a manager needs to just let a pitcher go regardless of what the stats say.
He’s been a little bit better but he still needs a better feel of the game. He pulled Lance Lynn too late on Sunday, after the veteran right-hander labored to the 5th inning. He should also stop putting Luis Cessa out there, as Cessa really hasn’t done anything to earn starts. If Boone is going to be able to lead the Yankees to success in the playoffs he’s going to need to go off of more than just analytics.
Aaron Boone is not perfect. He is still a work in progress. There are also a lot of injuries on this team. However, it’s no excuse for the first year manager that the Yankees are losing games to inferior teams because of incompetence. You’re in New York now. If you can make it there, you’ll make it anywhere.
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