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The importance of rest

Over a frustrating weekend, the Yankees dropped three out of four games against the Baltimore Orioles. Overall the team was listless and scored only two runs total over the final two games. Disappointing many Yankees fans, Aaron Boone kept DJ LeMahieu and the recently activated Gleyber Torres on the bench to allow the players to rest. At first, many fans were concerned there was an underlying injury but no…just rest.

Before the game, when asked if he needed a day off, LeMahieu stated “No, not really.” Meanwhile, the Yankees would struggle as his replacement, Tyler Wade, continued to look out-of-place. While I can understand LeMahieu’s frustrations, it is important to remember how valuable it is to rest. Yes, it would be nice to win every game, or even some games, but can we really forget how important it is to have a day off?

In 2016, the Yankees failed to make the playoffs. But what was even more disappointing was how tired the Yankees were in October. A-Rod frequently struggled on the back nines while Gary Sanchez was said to be exhausted during team apple picking trips. It would be great to see the Yankees compete for number 28; but not at the expense of being well-rested.

The Truth

All jokes aside, it kills me to see our C and D lineups. While injuries are part of the game, this team needs to be pushing for a playoff spot, not falling further down the standings. As of Sunday night, the Yankees are tied for seventh in the American League with the hated Astros. Baltimore, Detroit and the Royals are all within three games. In a season that started out with World Series aspirations, we are now fully off the rails.

Tonight, the Yankees start an important three game series up in Buffalo. It is crucial that the Yankees have their best lineup and are ready to go. Players need frequent at-bats to find their groove. With so many players struggling this season, it is fair to wonder if more consistency would help this team win games. In 2009, the Yankees had seven players appear in at least 88% of the games. In 2020, Luke Voit and Aaron Hicks are the only players to hit that number, and perhaps, unsurprisingly, rank 2nd and 3rd on the team in OBP.

Outside of a deep playoff run, Aaron Boone’s managerial decisions will come into question. The team is currently struggling and the best players need to be out there everyday. I’m done with seeing Tyler Wade and Mike Ford in the starting lineup. DJ, Gleyber and Voit should be the first names in just about every game the rest of the way.

This is a talented team but if the Yankees don’t wake up, they will have an extra long offseason to rest and Boone might be looking for a new job.