NEW YORK (AP) - The New York Yankees failed to make the playoffs for only the second time in 19 years, getting mathematically eliminated Wednesday night while they were losing to the Tampa Bay Rays.
Hobbled by age and injury, the Yankees (82-76) were trailing 7-3 in the eighth inning when they were knocked out as the Cleveland Indians completed a 7-2 win over the Chicago White Sox. There was no reaction from the Yankee Stadium crowd when the Indians result was posted on the scoreboard.
Despite baseball's highest opening-day payroll at $230 million, the Yankees failed to claim one of the 10 playoff berths.
Since starting the latest run of success in 1995, New York had missed the playoffs only in 2008 - when the team bid goodbye to old Yankee Stadium. This time, the Yankees are saying goodbye to Mariano Rivera and Andy Pettitte, who are retiring when the season ends Sunday.