It's not rocket science, but there are a lot of things that need to happen for the quest of 28 to finally be achieved. The baseball gods know that I want these things to happen more than anything because if I have to hear my dad say "The Yankees couldn't get it done for Derek Jeter" I may face palm myself. Last year was "The Yankees couldn't get it done for Mariano Rivera." I don't think I have to continue this.....you get the point. So here is what needs to happen so I don't start violently twitching.
Get another starter!
Seriously....we all know this. Continuing to piece together a rotation with 3/5 of our starts out is just not going to work. Granted CC Sabathia and Michael Pineda will be back at some point but we need that solid anchor. A starting rotation needs to run like a well-oiled machine. Once these guys get back they need to be consistent and they just need to live up to expectations, period.
Until that happens the Vidal Nuno and David Phelps experiment is not going to work. In fact, watching Phelps pitch against the Pirates on Saturday started that violent twitching I mentioned earlier. He got LUCKY that the Pirates did not put up some ugly, crooked numbers against him. How he managed to survive five innings with no earned runs is beyond me because those were the ugliest five innings I have watched in a very long time. Get someone else and plug ahead. Read another piece that Ike wrote HERE for more on that, he has some good ideas.
Sign Stephen DrewYeah....I am finally going to suggest it, but not right away. Once the draft ends next month the Yankees can sign him without losing that precious second round draft pick. It makes sense. We need to be careful with how we use Derek Jeter and giving him more turns as a DH will help that. Brendan Ryan has been a non-factor and now that he is not on the disabled list. Problem is he has been able to play since May 6th and yet we still haven't seem him. Not that I want to make this next point but I will....once Derek Jeter finally retires Ryan is not the answer to our everyday shortstop. However, Stephen Drew could be. He makes a lot of sense for us now and going forward.
Carlos Beltran is really the big question mark right now. We won't really know what the future holds for him until his 15 days on the disabled list are up and the Yankees decide if surgery is needed or not. If surgery is needed he is out for 6-8 weeks and that would suck because he was on such a roll for us. Take note Matthew Krause, you may be the new strength and conditioning coach....but there are no free passes here!
Boone Logan, and when he didn't come back I really wasn't upset. Suddenly, I am questioning it again. I just don't think Matt Thornton has been impressive. I think he has been mediocre. Granted he's only pitched 6.2 innings so far this year so that isn't a great sample size but he looked awful against the Mets. His 5.40ERA isn't pretty and he's already allowed 9 runs during that amount of time. If we are only going to have one lefty then he needs to step up his game big time. The Yankees need him, and right now he isn't fooling hitters.
Dellin Betances, but the kid has been impressive. He has done everything the Yankees have asked of him and then some. He has an impressive 39 strikeouts in just over 22 innings and a 1.61ERA. He has been clutch and he has given the Yankees length when needed. I am surprised he only has 3 holds so far for the season. He is doing what we need other in the bullpen to do. He has proven that he can handle high pressure scenarios so I think he it is time to start considering a more permanent role like....setup man to David Robertson. Anyone agree? I think he has earned it.
See the ball....hit the ball
Finally we need to give our starters consistent run support. We have some good hitters, but we need to be hitting consistently and getting on base. When the first guy gets on....MOVE THEM OVER! Get the hit parade going and that also means you Brian McCann! The home runs are nice, but let's not forget how to just get the ball in play. Speaking on home runs....holy May production Mark Teixeira! I don't know what is going on with him right now but please Joe Girardi.....keep that man batting near the 3 and 4 hole in the lineup.
I truly believe that if we do these things we can win the AL East and find ourselves back in the World Series again. To make it even sweeter, we can send Derek Jeter out with another ring and I can stop hearing my dad nag me anymore. So let's do this Yankees!
Hey, can someone share this with Girardi? Maybe he can put this in his binder, too.
--Jeana Bellezza, BYB Senior Writer and Editor
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