Yankees disappointment No. 7: 1995
As previously mentioned, 1994 very much could have been the Yankees’ year. A Yankees-Expos World Series was certainly in line before the strike. So the 1995 season had plenty of expectations.
Seeing their potential in the summer, the Yankees acquired David Cone from the Toronto Blue Jays, and he immediately became the Yankees’ ace. Andy Pettitte was a Rookie of the Year candidate, and Jack McDowell was serviceable.
But the heart of the lineup — Paul O’Neill, Bernie Williams, and Wade Boggs — had OPS of .913, .878, and .834, respectively. The Yankees ultimately lost the division to the Red Sox, but were awarded the first Wild Card bid.
The Yankees took a two games to none lead over the Mariners, and after Don Mattingly’s Game 2 homer and that thrilling, 15-inning victory, it seemed like destiny.
And then the Mariners won the next three games at the Kingdome. Sure, Game 5 is one of the best baseball games ever, but it was heartbreaking. What made matters worse is Mattingly, while mostly everyone knew he would retire that season, hit .417 with a 1.148 OPS that series.
Of course, the 100-win Indians and eventual champion Atlanta Braves were no easy matchups down the line, but leading 2-0 just to lose the next three puts this among the top 10.