ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - JULY 07: Aaron Boone #17 of the New York Yankees looks on before a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on July 07, 2019 in St. Petersburg, Florida.
(Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

The New York Yankees haven’t even been able to buy a victory for the last two weeks as they continue to plummet in the standings.

Josh Benjamin

Whatever the New York Yankees have been doing the last two weeks, it certainly isn’t remotely close to playing good baseball.

In case you missed it, this past week ranked anywhere from truly awful to aggressively mediocre. Even the two victories New York managed were hard-fought grinds. This team’s offense is such that the Bronx Bombers’ signature dominance has yet to show up consistently.

In fact, the team’s struggles at the plate are so bad that even the pitching staff is starting to lose patience. This past week, as Bran Hoch of MLB.com reported, both Michael King and Jameson Taillon met with the media after losing their starts and basically called out the lack of production.

At this point, with the New York Yankees barely above .500 and no end to the poor hitting in sight, can things get any worse?

More Tampa troubles

The silver lining of the past week is that the Yankees didn’t get swept by the Tampa Bay Rays. In fact, splitting the four-game series was a pleasant surprise. After getting owned by the ageless Rich Hill on Monday, Clint Frazier’s walk-off heroics on Tuesday gave fans hope.

Jordan Montgomery countered with another dominant outing on Wednesday, and all the New York Yankees needed was Gerrit Cole to dominate Thursday for a series win. In a horribly cruel twist of fate, Cole never had his best stuff and surrendered five runs in five innings.

Cole is only getting 3.75 runs of support per start to begin with this season. If he’s not at his best on the mound and neither are the bats meant to support him, then the Yankees are in all kinds of trouble.

Sox Sweep

Sometimes, a team regroups after a bad game. Other times, they get swept by their arch-rivals at home for the first time in a decade. Take a wild guess what happened this weekend with the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.

That’s right, folks. The Yankees got swept for the second consecutive weekend, and this time by an actually decent team. The Red Sox have shown new life with manager Alex Cora’s return this season, and let’s get controversial for a second. New York played this whole series as if they thought, “Eh, the Sox are overachieving. It’s fine!”

No, it is not fine. New York Yankees fans don’t like losing to the Red Sox as it is, but being swept at home? I’d rather have the Joker give me a daily root canal without novocaine.

In essence, maybe New York was doomed to this fate from the start. The Yankees fell behind early Friday courtesy of Rafael Devers’ first-inning three-run shot, and the bullpen crumbled on Saturday. Sunday could have been a great reset victory, but both the bullpen and bad umpiring got in the way.

Here’s where things get more concerning. Sunday’s umpires ejected a pair of Yankees coaches but who didn’t get into the thick of things? None other than manager Aaron Boone, who was oddly silent. Maybe it was because he already got run in Thursday’s loss to the Rays, but even so.

When an umpire’s calls are so bad that they’re essentially making a mockery of the players on the field and the manager is silent, that’s a big problem.

Looking ahead

The New York Yankees are 3-10 since sweeping the Chicago White Sox, and now it’s time for an unpopular and controversial opinion.

No one has flat-out said it, but this team is starting to crack. Yes, it’s still June. Sure, we all know a lot can happen between now and the end of the season. The 2021 campaign is far from over and a miracle could still happen.

But the fact remains a team can only underachieve so much before cracks in the foundation bring the whole house down. Based on King and Taillon’s comments above, the pressure is now officially on.

Hopefully, going on the road to face the equally underachieving Minnesota Twins and Philadelphia Phillies helps matters because, if we’re being honest, it’s hard to imagine this New York Yankees team getting even worse.