Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

The sweep in Atlanta says it all: The 2023 New York Yankees season is over.

Forget that FanGraphs puts their odds to make the playoffs at a whopping 2.5%. Ignore manager Aaron Boone’s ongoing nonsense about how this team can still go on an “unlikely run,” and then ignore Aaron Judge basically repeating it. Last place and 14 games back in the AL East and 6.5 out of a Wild Card spot is all we need to know.

This isn’t 1978 Yankees territory, folks. These Yankees need a baseball miracle that not even Ray Kinsella nor the ghost of Archie “Moonlight” Graham could conjure in time to save the season. Nothing will change that regardless of what happens the rest of the way, the Yankees were under .500 in September for the first time since 1995.

Ready for the saddest part of all of this? We actually might have to agree with what YES play by play man and soon-to-again-be radio ratings king Michael Kay:

Regular readers know that we at ESNY are not shy with our criticisms of general manager Brian Cashman. And yet, as much as we don’t want to admit it, Kay is right. In spite of the front office’s continual mistakes, the Yankees keep churning out winning seasons and are a regular playoff presence. Seven prospects in Baseball America’s top-100 is a gold star for their player development, and the numbers back it up too.

That means that someone, somewhere, deep in the offices of Yankee Stadium and behind the brass’s closed doors, is doing something right.

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Not to mention the Yankees’ bad luck has been almost comical all year. You can’t blame Judge hitting the IL twice on Cashman. The Yankees front office could not have foreseen Anthony Rizzo’s undetected concussion.

We will say it out loud right now: The Yankees organization is objectively good at what it does. Its GM is just woefully, frustratingly, regularly inconsistent at trusting his own process for developing stars.

But the least the Yankees can do is not be in constant denial about this season. No one is coming to save the day, not even if top outfield prospect Everson Pereira is promoted. To continually say otherwise is simply gaslighting everyone from the fanbase to local media.

But at the very least, as Kay said, there seems to be minimal acknowledgement that the system is broken. Cashman has worked outside his comfort zone all year. What’s one more time?

Pull the plug, call it a year, and prepare for the offseason. There’s a lot of work and big decisions ahead.

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Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.