The Yankees 2020 season will be judged a success only when there’s a parade down Broadway in November. But the journey to get there has drama as well…
The Yankees don’t need a motivational speech to propel them to the 2020 World Series. 2009 seems light-years ago, as witnessed by only a single current player holding a ring as a member of that team – Brett Gardner.
Fans and players agree the team has done a lot of winning since then, but in the way the Yankees define themselves, they haven’t won a damn thing.
But there is something extraordinary and unique about the upcoming season that should have an impact on the team.
Only six teams in baseball can say they won 100+ games during the regular season three years in a row. The Yankees have two, and 2020 can be the third. No team has a claim to four years in a row with 100 or more wins.
From the most recent to the earliest, the six teams are:
- Houston Astros (2017-2019)
- New York Yankees (2002-2004)
- Atlanta Braves (1997-1999)
- Baltimore Orioles (1969-1971)
- St. Louis Cardinals (1942-1944)
- Philadelphia A’s (1929-1931)
I’m of the mind to strike the Astros from the list because it’s been proven they cheated profusely with a sign-stealing scheme.
The Yankees, of course, can put a stamp of their own on the accomplishment as the only team to appear on the list twice with another 100 win season in 2020.
Yankees Manager Aaron Boone In The Stratosphere
Also of note is that Aaron Boone can become on the third manager to lead his team during the run.
In layman’s terms, a 100 win season in baseball means a team wins 62.5%, or five out of every eight games they play.
It also means the team is consistent over six months of baseball.
In the case of the Yankees in 2019, for instance, their longest win streak of nine games is bettered by losing only four games once during the season.
The most games under .500 last year was a mere three, and that occurred two weeks into the season on April 14. Never too high, never too low.
This brings us back to Aaron Boone, whose main job is to keep the Yankees on an even keel.
This is reflected, for example, that following that nine-game win streak, the team lost two straight, and came back to reel off five wins a row.
Yankees: The Chase Is On
The 2020 season, even more than usual, promises to be unbearably long. Fans and the 26 players in the clubhouse undeniably have sights set on October.
With a watered-down AL East containing the always rebuilding Orioles, and newly-minted re-builders the Boston Red Sox following the exile of Mookie Betts and David Price, the Yankees are expected to walk to the Division title.
But perhaps that should be the point here. There is much else to play for from April through September.
Three 100+ wins in a row is an accomplishment few have attained, both individually and as members of a team.
We should remind ourselves too that the recent sting of losing by the Yankees after all that winning has been endured by every team on the list.
Both the Yankees under Joe Torre and the Braves under Bobby Cox did not win a single championship during their run of 100+ wins.
And the sleazy Astros managed to win only one, despite all the banging on that garbage can.
The Yankees are in line to not only extend the run but to break the losing streak in 2020. Las Vegas says they will, and most of us are on the same page – even in February.