There is no way around the fact that Andy Pettitte deciding to hang his spikes up is highly disappointing. I was convinced he’d return, with seemingly plenty left in the tank, a chance to climb up the all-time leaderboards and perhaps an opportunity for another championship (although admittedly even my optimism slowly began to drain when we still hadn’t heard anything three weeks after that mid-January post). Apparently the draw of sitting around on piles of cash doing nothing every day was just too compelling for Andy to subject his body to the rigors of another Major League Baseball season.
And so The Show must go on. Considering that at the outset of the offseason I expected (as did pretty much everyone else) the Yankees to be carrying both Cliff Lee and Andy Pettitte in their 2011 rotation, it’s time to reassess expectations. Maybe I’m crazy and seeing the world through rose-colored glasses, but I remain convinced that the Yankees will be good in 2011, and should still have enough firepower to compete for the division. And even if they’re not all that good, at the very least they should be a tad more interesting to watch than they’ve been in the past.
For pretty much every season over the last decade I’ve sat down at the beginning of every Yankee game expecting them to win each and every time out. Even though we know they’re typically going to lose around 62-72 times a season, unless they’re facing a lefthander with a sub-90mph fastball, I’ve always felt great about the team’s chances of winning any given game. With less certainty in the rotation than they’ve had in some time, maybe I won’t lose my mind every time the starter blows up early and puts the Yankees in a huge hole, or the offense decides to take the night off, or the bullpen blows a lead, because I won’t be expecting them to win every game.
Ah, who am I kidding, that’s a bunch of garbage. I live and die with every pitch; I’m sure I’ll still take every run surrendered and every loss just as hard as I always do.
But what hopefully will be compelling is seeing what some of the team’s much-heralded rookies, who we’ve spent a lot of time talking about this winter, can do. It sounds like Freddy Garcia may have the upper hand for one of the final two spots in the rotation primarily based on his mediocre-but-better-than-every-other-candidate’s 2010 results, and most expect Ivan Nova to slot somewhere in the back end as well. But a lot can happen between now and the beginning of the season. I don’t have a particular problem if Brian Cashman decides to go out and sign a Kevin Millwood or whoever to a minor league deal, but at this point I don’t think they necessarily need to. While more competition down in Tampa could spur some of the younger players on, if Garcia/Millwood/whoever ends up taking valuable Major League development time away from a talented youngster, that could end up being counterproductive. I’d like to see David Phelps, Ryan Pope, D.J. Mitchell or Adam Warren make cases for themselves during the Spring. Maybe Hector Noesi steps up.
One thing we do know is that it’s probably unlikely that we’ll see any of the B’s this season. For as much hype as Manny Banuelos and Dellin Betances have received of late, we have to remember that they have a collective six Double A starts between them. That’s not to say it’s impossible, but I imagine the Yankees would prefer to see what some of their slightly less-heralded pitching prospects that are a little further along in the development pipeline can do before they rush two of the more highly touted pitchers they’ve had in a few years to the Majors.
Regardless, 2011 is shaping up to be one of the more fascinating Yankee seasons in some time by virtue of the fact that we really have no idea what to expect out of the pitching staff. CC Sabathia should be amazing again; Phil Hughes will hopefully build on a promising 2010; and A.J. Burnett really can’t be any worse than he was last year. But after those three, it’s anyone’s guess. As a not-so-wise man has said many times over, “You can’t predict baseball.” For arguably the first time ever, Mr. Sterling, your favorite phrase may actually carry some water.
LIKE TYA ON FACEBOOK
- TYA To Merge With It’s About The Money, Stupid
- What about Kevin Youkilis?
- Teix Now Front And Center On The “Needs To Produce” Radar
- Cashman: Heathcott A Dark Horse Candidate
- A Dog Chasing Cars
- Outfield Trade Targets
- The Problem With Brett Gardner
- A Look At Relief Prospect Branden Pinder
- The Yankees Should Be Realistic, Put Team on Short Leash in 2013
- Briefly discussing the internal options to replace Curtis Granderson
- essentialtexting.com on Open Thread | Game 3 | Detroit Tigers vs. New York Yankees | Sunday, April 3, 2011
- www25.tok2.com on Sabermetrics Doesn’t Have A Monopoly on Not-Stupid: Mike Trout is the AL MVP
- グッチ 財布 on Sunday Links-Joba’s Timetable, Comparing eras, Pineda
- raspberry ketone diet 1200 on Sabermetrics Doesn’t Have A Monopoly on Not-Stupid: Mike Trout is the AL MVP
- Free riot codes on Off-Topic
- Fran on The Great Subway Race
- sleeping bag hand Orientation on What about Austin Romine?
- camping stove heat diffuser on What about Austin Romine?
- 手機殼 on The Yankees’ Standing In The AL East Right Now
- 手機外殼 on The Yankees’ Standing In The AL East Right Now
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