I was debating titling this post something along the lines of "Offensive woes continue" or "Nightmarish August continues for Yankee offense" and then realized that "Offensive" summed the current situation up pretty well. Plus, at the rate the Yankees aren't scoring runs, I can only imagine I'll be able to utilize those discarded titles later this week.
I've tried to be even-keeled and rational regarding the Yankees' August woes, but it's become more than tiresome to peruse the upcoming probable pitchers and know that a certain pitcher is not only going to beat the Yankees but make them look silly in the process. Yet the Yankees seem content with continuing to make my predictions look ace as Max Scherzer -- yet another pitcher the Yankees have never faced before and who they couldn't muster any offense against -- hopped on the Bryan Bullington train and added to the Bombers' humiliation by extending the Yankees' scoreless streak with 6 shutout innings of his own en route to a a 3-1 Detroit victory. The Tigers were on the cusp of completing a relatively unprecedented second straight shutout of the Yankees if not for some amazing wildness from closer Jose Valverde in the 9th which led to a run-scoring bases-loaded walk of Brett Gardner -- the Yankees' first run in 17 1/3 innings. According to the YES telecast, the last time the Yankees were shutout in back-to-back games was in 1999.
As the continuing saga of getting owned by pitchers they've never seen before rolls on, according to Yankees.com, both Derek Jeter and Nick Swisher think that "the added adrenaline of playing the Yankees could add a mile or two to opponents' fastballs and allow them to pitch differently on the field than on video." I'm sorry, but that sounds ridiculous. You're professional hitters; you need to make adjustments to your approach the same way the pitcher is making adjustments each and every time through the batting order. I'd still love to see a set of data on how other teams fare against starters they've never seen before -- if every team in MLB struggles the same way the Yankees do, I'll stop harping on it.
The Yankees have averaged 3.6 runs per game since leaving Cleveland at the end of last month. That's a span of 17 games -- a small sample to be sure, but still a painful one. It seems as though there have already been several rough instances this season where we could proclaim that surely the Yankees had hit their low point and would bounce back, but given the fact that they were nearly shutout in consecutive games for the first time in 11 years, not to mention the fact that the team has a mere eight hits in its last 18 innings (that's a .138 batting average!) -- hopefully it's safe to say that this was indeed the low point of the 2010 season.
Oh, and both Alex Rodriguez and Nick Swisher were removed from the game, though are apparently considered day-to-day, and there's a chance Alex is back in the lineup tonight. Please let that be the case; the last thing this struggling offense needs is more Ramiro Pena at-bats.