From our friends at NoMaas, I want you to take a look at this graphic
Peruse it, think about it, and come back here when you figure out what everyone has in common.
You know the common complaint, that the Yankees buy their World Series, and all of that, and yet we have here, perhaps the first time in a long time, a case in which every major traditional category, both batting and pitching, is being led by a home-grown Yankee.
Yes, you can argue that well, there are only four players here–Canó, Rivera, Pettitte and Hughes–but it’s four extraordinary performances by home-grown Yankees, and two of the them, especially, Canó and Hughes, are making their case to be playing in Anaheim come July.
Given the early season struggles of imports Sabathia and Vazquez (the latter who is not really struggling any more), and AJ Burnett being…well, AJ, the onus has fallen on Pettitte and Hughes to be consistent and holding up the latter part of the rotation. They haven’t done just that; they’ve also become the team’s best pitchers in the process.
As for the offense, after the departure of Hideki Matsui, the Yankees needed someone to step up, to be able to “protect” Alex Rodriguez, to provide the Yankees’ power while their three and four hitters struggled early. Robinson Canó, who if not for a mini-slump in early May might still be hitting .400, has been more than up to the task.
With both Hughes and Canó it’s been gratifying to see prospects begin to reach potential, but with Canó, who has been around longer and frustrating fans for so long that people in 2008 were clamoring for a trade, is especially satisfying.
This is no knock on Sabathia or Burnett or Teixeira or Rodriguez, but rather an excuse to remember, in the shadow of the draft, that yes, the Yankees do occasionally know what they’re doing, and that homegrown success often tastes the best of all.
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TagsA.J. Burnett Alex Rodriguez Andy Pettitte Austin Romine Baltimore Orioles Bartolo Colon Boston Red Sox Brett Gardner Brian Cashman Bullpen CC Sabathia Chien-Ming Wang Cliff Lee Curtis Granderson David Robertson Dellin Betances Derek Jeter Francisco Cervelli Freddy Garcia Game Recap Hiroki Kuroda Ivan Nova Javier Vazquez Jesus Montero Joba Chamberlain Joe Girardi Johnny Damon Jorge Posada Manny Banuelos Mariano Rivera Mark Teixeira Melky Cabrera Michael Pineda New York New York Yankees Nick Johnson Nick Swisher Phil Hughes Prospects Rafael Soriano Red Sox Robinson Cano Russell Martin Tampa Bay Rays Yankees