Above was the last we saw of Javier Vazquez, when he served up a pitch that was the final dagger in the hearts of the 2004 team’s chances to return to the World Series. Worse yet, it was facing our hated rival the Boston Red Sox, and we could only sit back and watch as they coasted to a World Series win, ending their ‘curse’ of 86 years. It was the on-field nadir of every Yankee fan’s existence. Charlie Brown finally kicked the Football, and Vazquez was the placeholder.
It’s the kind of moment that should be a chance for redemption, but Javier would never get that opportunity the following year. It was 2004, George Steinbrenner was still in charge, and his take was that Vazquez was ‘gutless’ and he sent Vazquez packing in exchange for a pitcher he had long coveted in Randy Johnson. A more sober assessment would have been it was just one bad pitch, and Javy was unfamiliar with working out of the bullpen.… Click here to read the rest