Jacoby Ellsbury sat the bench for most of his first postseason game after signing a $153 million contract with the New York Yankees.
Less than two years later, the Yankees made a decision to play the most important game of their season-Tuesday night’s winner-take-all American League wild-card game against Houston-with their prize sitting on the bench.
Instead, Brett Gardner was listed as the center fielder, while Chris Young – a lefty-hitting specialist – was the starting left fielder.
Not too sure what Yankees fans are upset about, anyone of us would love to be paid $21 million a season to watch a baseball game.
“Something I mulled over for a couple of days”, Girardi said.
“A lot”, manager Joe Girardi said Tuesday before the game. “This is the decision I came to, and in the end I’m the one who has to live with it”.
Keuchel beat the Yankees twice this year, pitching a six-hit shutout June 25 and seven scoreless innings of three-hit ball August 25.
“I told him I wanted to play”, Ellsbury said after finishing batting practice. “I can understand if he’s frustrated, but he’ll be ready to go”.
Ellsbury batted. 257 in 111 games. “But then I let him know I’ll obviously be ready to go at any point in the game and willing to do whatever it takes for this team to win, so we left it at that and I’ll be definitely ready to go tonight”.
Ellsbury has slumped to a. 220 average with five homers and 23 RBIs since the All-Star break. “It just came down to Gardy’s body of work against lefties versus Ellsbury”.
New York’s starting lineup included a pair of rookies: Greg Bird at first and Rob Refsnyder at second.
Chris Young, who is 6 for 20 (.300) against the AL Cy Young Award candidate, is batting second and playing left field.
Girardi said the decision wasn’t easy to sit Ellsbury. Starters Luis Severino and Ivan Nova were available for long relief.
“All semblance of an order of our bullpen is kind of off right now in a one-game playoff”, Girardi said.
On whether the Yankees underachieved or overachieved this season, Girardi suggested that he wasn’t the best person to ask.
Other interesting moves include the inclusion of McCann following a few speculation that Girardi may have gone with the right-handed John Ryan Murphy, who also has great numbers catching Masahiro Tanaka.