While last season was all about chemistry for the New York Yankees, this season has an entirely different feel…and not in a good way.
Chemistry is often regarded as many students’ least favorite subject. Clearly, the 2018 New York Yankees aren’t doing too well with it either.
In fact, what was a subject the 2017 Yankees got straight A’s in is now the subject they are flunking 12 games into the season.
Do we know what goes on inside the clubhouse? There’s no way to truly knowing what goes on behind the scenes. However, on the surface, you can tell the feel is different for this squad.
Maybe it has to do with the fact that last year, they had nothing to lose. The Yankees weren’t expected to survive the season anywhere close to the playoffs and yet, they did. Why? Because they played loose and fun. They simply played the game.
Prior to the 2018 season starting, the Bronx Bombers were practically handed their 28th World Series title, with fans and experts already expecting the stacked lineup to run away with the division. Now, the spotlight is on them and the cracks are starting to show.
But what does this all have to do with chemistry? The Bombers seemed to have it all figured out last year and the better they played as the underdogs, the more chemistry they seemed to have.
No, we haven’t seen that yet. Last year, they had the team chemistry to play loose and free. Now? They don’t seem to have that tight-knit group that was willing to relax and have fun. Now they are all business because all eyes are on them.
Of course, a lot of the team chemistry came last year from the late-season addition of Todd Frazier and the ridiculous “thumbs down” movement. They also lost Starlin Castro this offseason, who was the primary selfie king on postgame flights.
It doesn’t seem like this season is all about embracing the team chemistry. It’s solely about living up to expectations that have been clearly set for them this season. It’s all about winning, not embracing the beauty of the game of baseball.
Thinking back to last season, what can the Yankees do to remedy their chemistry? There really is no easy fix. Chemistry just happens. When players spend that much time with their teammates, they get along.
Now we see a disparity between players. Aaron Judge is now viewed as a God of sorts. Giancarlo Stanton has that same reputation since arriving in the Bronx. Gary Sanchez is heavily discussed by the media as another legitimate power threat. The “Big Three” are talked about constantly, gracing t-shirts around the country. But everyone else is just there.
Maybe that has something to do with the lack of chemistry. Maybe these players just don’t feel like they can be their loose, goofy selves because they are constantly under the watchful eye of the media.
We’ll never really know for sure unless players tell us but looking at it from the outside in, the chemistry just isn’t there. That could change as the season goes on.
Last year, the chemistry was an A+. This year? It’s a solid F. Time to study up, New York Yankees. This is a subject that needs improving.