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Yankee's 2009 ranked...
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11/7/2009 12:47:47 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
All is right with the world again. Well, at least the baseball world. The Yankees are champs. New Yorkers are singing to Sinatra. Derek Jeter is hugging Mariano Rivera at the end of a World Series.
This is proof that money can buy happiness. So, thank you, New York Yankees, thank you for showing the Pittsburgh Pirates and their ilk that pinching pennies is no way to go through life.
Sarcasm aside, the Yankees were baseball's best team. They showed us that in the postseason. Alex Rodriguez and CC Sabathia were terrific, and the great Rivera was again untouchable.
Where does this team rank among all the Yankee champs? Let us rank all 27. No science was used. No heavy-duty analysis. We looked at the numbers -- win-loss records, run differentials and postseason results -- and then went with our gut. You know, kind of like using Brad Lidge or a 38-year-old, off-the-scrap-heap Pedro Martinez. The fun part of this exercise? We get to dig up names like Snuffy and Cuddles. (You'll have to read on for that.)
The 1939 Yankees scored 967 runs and breezed to a World Series victory despite the loss of Lou Gehrig.
1. 1939 Yankees (107-45, .702, plus-411 run differential, swept World Series)
Not as famous as some other teams, but widely viewed by experts (well, experts who know what they're talking about) as the greatest baseball team ever. They scored 76 more runs than any other AL team and allowed 144 fewer. Their scoring differential of 411 runs is the best in major league history. Joe DiMaggio (.381, 126 RBIs) led an offense that featured five regulars with .400-plus on-base percentages, while 21-game winner Red Ruffing was one of seven hurlers to win 10 or more games.
2. 1927 Yankees (110-44, .714, plus-376, swept World Series)
Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig provided the most devastating one-two punch in the game's history, as Ruth hit .356 with 60 homers and 164 RBIs while Gehrig hit .373 with 47 homers, 52 doubles, 18 triples and 175 RBIs. Starting pitchers Waite Hoyt and Herb Pennock are in the Hall of Fame, but the team's top pitcher was a 30-year-old rookie named Wilcy Moore, who went 19-7 with a 2.28 ERA and 13 saves.
3. 1998 Yankees (114-48, .704, plus-309, 11-2 in playoffs, swept World Series)
This team was deep and balanced (no player hit 30 home runs, but 10 hit at least 10) and had the best pitching staff of the modern-era clubs. (Hideki Irabu even had a better ERA than Andy Pettitte.) The argument against this club: It was an expansion season, and expansion seasons always produce inflated records. (The Braves, for example, won 106 games in '98.) Argument for: David Wells probably threw some great house parties.
4. 1936 Yankees (102-51, .667, plus-334, won World Series in six games)
In the first of four straight World Series championships, Gehrig (.354, 49 homers) and rookie DiMaggio (.323, 29 homers) were two of six starters who hit .300. The overall team average was .300, and these Bombers scored 10 or more runs 41 times -- more than a quarter of their games. Oh, they also allowed the fewest runs in the league.
5. 1937 Yankees (102-52, .662, plus-308, won World Series in five games)
DiMaggio, Gehrig and Bill Dickey combined to drive in 459 runs. The rest of the lineup wasn't too shabby, either -- George Selkirk hit .328 and slugged .629, and Tommy Henrich hit .320 and slugged .553 … and neither could crack the starting lineup on a regular basis. Yes, it was right about here that the rest of America started hating the Yankees.
6. 1953 Yankees (99-52, .656, plus-254, won World Series in six games)
The Yankees led the AL in runs scored, allowed the fewest runs and won their fifth straight World Series. Whitey Ford, 24, went 18-6, but the rest of the staff was a group of crafty veterans: Vic Raschi, Ed Lopat, Allie Reynolds and Johnny Sain were all 34 or older but went a combined 56-24. This team won 18 straight games in late May and early June to cruise to the pennant.
7. 1932 Yankees (107-47, .695, plus-278, swept World Series)
Ruth was aging, getting fat and probably ran like a Molina brother by this time, but he could still hit: .341 with 41 homers. Gehrig, Dickey, Tony Lazzeri and Earle Combs are in the Hall of Fame. No wonder this team scored more than 1,000 runs. Lefty Gomez won 24 games, and Ruffing finished second in the league in ERA.
8. 1938 Yankees (99-53, .651, plus-256, swept World Series)
It was Gehrig's last season (he was still effective enough to hit .295 with 114 RBIs), and the team steamrolled the Cubs in the World Series, but this group had the weakest staff of the dominant '36-'39 teams (although still the best in the league).
9. 1956 Yankees (97-57, .636, plus-226, won World Series in seven games)
Mickey Mantle at the height of his powers: He led the AL in homers, RBIs, batting average, runs, slugging percentage and total bases, although he did finish second to teammate Billy Martin in beverages consumed at the Copacabana.
10. 2009 Yankees (103-59, .636, plus-162, 11-4 in playoffs, won World Series in six games)
A deep and intimidating lineup (Melky Cabrera was the only regular with an OPS+ below league average), a deep and intimidating payroll, but a pitching staff that was neither deep nor intimidating. Still, we'll put this team at No. 10 -- that was a heck of a lineup, and CC Sabathia is a legit ace. Remember back on May 12 when they were 15-17 and 6½ games out of first place? You were mocking them at the time, weren't you? You know you were. So, if you hate the Yankees, it's probably your fault they won. They took that mocking and spit it right back in your face.
11. 1950 Yankees (98-56, .636, plus-223, swept World Series)
Phil Rizzuto hit .324, scored 125 runs and won the AL MVP award; Yogi hit .322 and drove in 124 runs; in his last great season, DiMaggio hit .301 with 122 RBIs; Hall of Famer Johnny Mize slugged 25 homers in just 274 at-bats. They swept the Phillies in the World Series, with Yankee fans chanting, "Who's your daddy?" when Robin Roberts pitched.
12. 1947 Yankees (95-57, .630. plus-226, won World Series in seven games)
Joe DiMaggio was named AL MVP despite hitting only 20 homers and driving in 97 runs. Why? Because he was Joe DiMaggio, that's why. (Actually, those were pretty good numbers for that year: He was sixth in homers and third in RBIs.) The team's secret weapon was reliever Joe Page, who pitched 141 innings, won 14 games and saved 17. So he threw as many innings in one year as Mariano Rivera throws in two. Take that, Mariano! (Although Mariano wasn't saddled with the nickname "The Gay Reliever." Not that there's anything wrong with that.)
13. 1978 Yankees (100-63, .613, plus-153, 7-3 in playoffs, won World Series in six games)
This team ranks slightly above the '77 squad thanks to the addition of Goose Gossage to the bullpen (guess what … he was a free agent, so even then the Yankees were buying pennants) and the awesome season of Ron Guidry, who went 25-3 with a 1.74 ERA and earned the classic "Louisiana Lightning" nickname. We don't have nicknames like that anymore. Couldn't Mark Teixeira be the "Maryland Mauler"? A.J. Burnett, the "Arkansas Assassin"? Joba Chamberlain, the "Nebraska Neutralizer"? C'mon, sportswriters, you have a job to do, and you're failing.
14. 1977 Yankees (100-62, .617, plus-180, 7-4 in playoffs, won World Series in six games)
This squad used only 154 relief appearances the entire season, and 114 of those were by Sparky Lyle and Dick Tidrow. So it basically had a two-man bullpen. This team also had a Willie, a Bucky, a Jimmy, an Ellie, a Reggie and two guys named Mickey, and it was managed by a Billy. Man, the '70s were fun.
15. 1999 Yankees (98-64, .605, plus-169, 11-1 in playoffs, swept World Series)
David Cone was the only starting pitcher with an ERA below 4.12. Somehow they still allowed the second fewest runs in the league. Oh, that's right …
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11/10/2009 10:40:35 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
Remember back on May 12 when they were 15-17 and 6½ games out of first place? You were mocking them at the time, weren't you? You know you were. So, if you hate the Yankees, it's probably your fault they won. They took that mocking and spit it right back in your face.
That defines the Yankees and us New Yorkers in general :)