baseball

Matt Carpenter helps the Yankees crush the Cubs

David Ross has won the World Series twice since the Yankees got there in 2009. Both of their championship teams were big spenders in the big markets – first the Boston Red Sox and then the Chicago Cubs. But he didn’t think both teams would always compete.

“I’ve been around baseball a long time to know there’s never ‘ever’,” Ross, a former catcher who now manages the Cubs, said Saturday. “I don’t think it’s a thing. Every year is unique, and there can be a lot of adversity. It’s hard to maintain success.”

It’s hard, but not impossible: Look at the Yankees, who’ve been circling for three decades as an enhanced version of the team.

He now has the best record in the majors, 44-16 after beating the Cubs 18-4 at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. Only four times the franchise has run to a good start through 60 games: Babe Ruth in 1928, Joe DiMaggio in 1939, Mickey Mantle in 1953 and Derek Jeter in 1998.

All of those teams have won the World Series, and setting that achievement is the only criterion for success in 2022. That’s life in pinstripes.

“We have a lot of guys here, really, we haven’t done anything,” outfielder Aaron Judge said after slugging two of the Yankees’ six homers on Saturday. “We have a couple other guys with Rizzo, a choppy, some World Series rings – but this team as a whole, we haven’t done much.”

Anthony Rizzo and Aroldis Chapman won their rings with the Cubs in 2016, with Ross – in his 15th and final season – riding off the field on the shoulders of his teammates after a 7th game in Cleveland. The Cubs were stocked with young talent and flush with money, a clever front office and their own television network on the way. Didn’t feel like the longest start of an all-time skirmish?

“I was saying yes, and at the deadline of last year, they got rid of all the guys we were afraid of. We all felt a big part of what they were doing,” the Yankees said. Matt Carpenter, a longtime St. Louis Cardinal, made two home runs and scored seven against his old National League Central rival on Sunday.

“It’s a testament to how hard it is to constantly be good. That’s why it’s really remarkable here – I know they haven’t won it since ’09, but they’ve been really good for a long time. There is something to be said about teams giving them a chance to be there.

The Cardinals, who are leading NL Central, are following their 15th consecutive winning season. The Los Angeles Dodgers are a safe bet to push their series to 12. The Yankees? This is their 30th consecutive winning season. And since the standards of the playoff spot are ever decreasing – six teams per league will do so this season – a win record may be needed to reach the October tournament.

“When I was first there, we had a couple bad seasons but we weren’t a bad team,” said Cubs reliever David Robertson, who played nine seasons with the Yankees between 2008 and 2018. “With the expanded playoffs now, this team, they’re in it, I say, every year.

Robertson, a 37-year-old right-hander, is having another dominant season, and it’s hard to hit a lot of strikeouts. Last year he pitched for the amateur men’s team before ending the playoffs with Tampa Bay; This past winter, he was shaped by whipping up suspicious locals in tennis before signing with a home and cubs in Rhode Island during a lockout. They will soon be doing good business.

The Cubs, 23-36, are packed with such placeholders, a roster of mobile trailers that keep the day-to-day operations in place. After Friday’s close defeat, they were perfectly matched: the Yankees hit their pitchers with homers, waited for a walk, and punished them Sunday after dropping an infield pop-up with the second and third runners.

It is kept with tradition; The Cubs have never won the Bronx, losing all 12 games, including four World Series games in the 1930s. This reflects the current Yankees’ mantra, knowing how good they are and desperate to prove it every day, a rare blend of ego and drive that defines the best teams.

“I would say we were full on our win, but some teams in the past, if we didn’t hit homers, sometimes we didn’t come out with wins,” said outfielder and designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton. “But we are finding different ways to beat teams. If you give us an extra, we take advantage of it and work hard against the opponent.

On Saturday, Stanton hit a curveball through the low-hanging second deck on the left; It fell back onto the lower seats and descended to the ground. It was the toughest homer in the majors this season, at 119.8 mph from the bat, and the poor Cubs pitcher, Matt Swarmer, a rookie right-hander, ducked and turned – eyes wide, mouth agape – sizzling overhead. No one hits the ball like Stanton.

“You’re strange,” manager Aaron Boone told him at the dugout. It was high praise.

The Yankees are thriving in every area; He has scored more runs in the American League and fewer runs in the majors. His payroll, about $ 247 million, ranks third overall behind the Mets and Dodgers. He maintains a star-driven trading strategy with imports such as Stanton and star starter Gerrit Cole, but hunts for bargains like everyone else (Nestor Cortes, Clay Homes, Isiah Kiner-Falefa, Jose Trevino).

The pieces fit particularly well this season, perhaps enough to deliver that inescapable 28th championship; The next two weeks will be a good measure of the Yankees’ chances against Tampa Bay, Toronto and Houston.

In any case, the rest of the schedule is a really long – but fun – post-season practice. When the Cubs and others ride the waves of competing and rebuilding, the Yankees are always doing what they do. He’s doing better than he has done in a long time.

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