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A 27-year streak continues, as another 10-game Yankee winning streak ends

By Danny Knobler | Baseball Insider
The last time the Yankees had 11 straight wins, Billy Martin was the manager. (Getty Images)

NEW YORK -- This is an oddity, nothing more.

Don't look for hidden meaning. Don't ask why.

This is just one where you say, "That can't be," and where I say, "Yes, it is."

Yes, it's true, the Yankees haven't had an 11-game winning streak in 27 years. And it's 27 years and counting, because their most recent winning streak ended at 10 games in Tuesday night's 4-3 loss to the Braves.

The last time the Yankees won 11 in a row, Billy Martin was their manager. The last time the Yankees won 11 in a row, Don Mattingly was a 24-year-old first baseman.

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The last time the Yankees won 11 in a row, Chipper Jones was 13 years old.

"At least none of it was at our expense then," said Jones, old enough to remember that there was no interleague play in 1985. "Most of this one was at our expense."

But this one, like five other Yankee streaks since 1985, ended at 10 games.

Again, this is more notable than meaningful.

It's notable because there have been 45 winning streaks of 11 or more games in the major leagues since the Yankees last had one. The Red Sox alone had five of those streaks.

The only teams that haven't won 11 straight games since 1985 are the Angels, Indians, Marlins, Reds, Expos/Nationals . . . and the Yankees.

Meanwhile, the Yankees have won five World Series. They've had five 100-win seasons, including one 114-win season.

They won 12 straight postseason games (over two years). They won 14 straight World Series games (over five years).

They've done everything except win 11 simple regular-season games in a row.

"I can't say it shocks me, really," third baseman Eric Chavez said. "You get six, seven, eight in a row, that's realistic. But nine, 10, 11, it's not very realistic. There's luck."

Chavez played on the A's team that won 20 in a row in 2002. And on one the year before that won 11 straight.

He also pointed out that this Yankee winning streak may not have even reached 10 without a beneficial (and incorrect) call at home plate last Saturday in Washington. Yes, there's some luck involved.

When the streak ended Tuesday, the Yankees had two runners thrown out at the plate. They went 2-for-11 with runners in scoring position, continuing what has been a season-long trend.

In fact, during the 10-game streak, the Yankees went 19-for-84 (.226) with runners in scoring position.

Their pitching and defense has been outstanding, but those offensive numbers suggest that perhaps they shouldn't have been able to win even 10 in a row.

But they did. They won 10 in a row, as they've done five times since 1985.

They just haven't won the 11th.

 
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