Pitching Is To Blame For The New York Yankees Record
The New York Yankees are 2-4 after six games. I know it is only six games and you really can’t judge after that. There is a lot of panic in Yankee land and a lot of people saying I told you so. I am not really one of those people because I believe that the Yankees will be able to hang in there until they get some of their stars back and then they can fully compete with the best in the American League. I am going to evaluate what is going on with the Yankees getting off to a slow start though.
There was a lot of talk about the Yankees offense in the winter. The pundits said they lost Nick Swisher and Russell Martin and didn’t adequately replace them. Derek Jeter was coming back from an ankle injury and it turns out he would most likely miss at least the first month of the season. Alex Rodriguez would be out until at least after the All Star Break, Curtis Granderson broke his arm in the first at bat of the spring and Mark Teixeira got hurt shortly after. The pundits looked at the Yankees lineup and said they are going to struggle to score runs and be in big trouble. I think they are right to some extent, I agree that this isn’t a typical Yankees lineup. I also look at the San Francisco Giants though who have won two out of the last three World Series. The Giants are not a very strong offensive team but they have the pitching. I think the Yankees are going to have to manufacture a lot of runs which I think they can do. I think they are better made for the postseason but it is going to be harder for them to get there then it has been in the past.
The Yankees pitching staff consists of CC Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Andy Pettitte, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova and David Phelps. The top three of Sabathia, Kuroda and Pettitte is really strong, Hughes has won 16 and 18 games in two of the last three seasons and is in a walk year. Nova and Phelps are young guys that have shown the potential. The Yankees bullpen also looks to be very strong but they haven’t shown it yet in the first six games. The reason the Yankees are losing is not because of their offense, they aren’t scoring a ton of runs but they haven’t been shut out in any game. I believe they can score 3-5 runs a game and if the pitching is what it is supposed to be, then that should be good enough. I am not as panicked about the Yankees because I do believe they have some of the best pitching in the league and they will get it going. The Yankees are going to go where the pitching takes them.
I really don’t think the offense is going to be as bad as people think. I think the biggest problem they have is depth. Jeter is out and his backup Eduardo Nunez already got hurt although it isn’t serious and he should be back soon. If Travis Hafner and Kevin Youkilis break down they really don’t have much to replace them.
The Yankees are going to need to survive April and hope they get Granderson, Jeter and Teixeira back in early May like they are supposed to. I think their team will look a lot different with those guys and of course make them better. The depth will be better with those guys back because some of the guys who are being counted on in key roles will be back to complementary and bench players where they fit better. It is a long season though and we have only played six of 162 so the bottom line is you have to be patient and let things play out. I believe you really can’t get a good read on a team until your 25-30 games in. The Yankees were happy to get a big win in Detroit against Justin Verlander and maybe this bring some confidence and a winning streak with it, we will see what happens in Cleveland.