Just like Ken Davidoff, I can't help but wonder how our projected starting rotation is going to hold up. We all wanted to acquire that young, impressive starting pitcher this off season and it just didn't happen. It could still happen, but I'm not going to hold my breath. I'm also....not going to "bet high" with him on a high rollers table in Las Vegas. Here's why....
So every year there are always articles written about predicting who the Yankees "ace" will be. A lot of times I agree with them but not this year. No offense to Ken Davidoff, because he writes a lot of compelling articles and we have a lot of respect for him here at BYB, but I have to disagree with his latest article, HERE. I think in this case, it is like counting your chickens before they hatch.
So Davidoff thinks that Luis Severino is going to be the ace this year. I had to read that twice just to make sure I wasn't misunderstanding him. I like that he "buys high" and isn't afraid to make a bold statement. I just don't understand the logic behind it. I really like Severino. He came up last season and did what was asked of him. He contributed to the rotation, and he did well. He was a stabilizer, but he is in no way shape or form an "ace" yet.
Severino started in 11 games last year. It is hard for me to give the title of "ace" to someone who comes up mid season and will turn 22 in a few months. He doesn't have the experience yet. Sure the 62 innings and 2.89 ERA is impressive but that is not yet "ace" status. If he can build on that this year, and be consistent years from now then I can call him an "ace." When I think of an "ace" I am thinking of Clayton Kershaw, or a Felix Hernandez type so I would be careful with throwing around that title, because those guys have earned that. Don't cheapen it.
Honestly, as far as the order for the rest of his list, it didn't really surprise me. Sure, Masahiro Tanaka is going to be at the top of that list because we spent a ton of money on him and we put that expectation on him. We have been waiting for him to live up to that expectation....but we need more than 154 regular season innings and for him to stay healthy, which we have not seen.
I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss Nathan Eovaldi from the "bets high" theory here. He was the most consistent starter the Yankees had and with the improvements in his pitching mechanics he has made since becoming a Yankee he could finish even better than he 14-3 season last year if he can stay healthy.If he gets that splitter mastered he will be a dangerous weapon for the Yankees. I don't think we can dismiss someone who pitched the same amount of innings as Masahiro Tanaka and made some major improvements last season.
I have all of the faith in the world in Severino. I hate to think about what the rotation would have looked like if he wasn't called up, but to be an ace you need a body of consistent and successful work. Severino is a rookie. He is in the infancy stages of his major league career. He is still learning from the veterans. Let's see just if he can pick up where he left off first, OK? Otherwise, if you take that bet on a Vegas gambling table you may end up losing a lot of money.
BYB Senior Writer and Editor
Thank you for your loyalty to Bleeding Yankee Blue.
Please shop at the BYB store!
On Twitter: @BleednYankeeBlu
On Facebook, LIKE Bleeding Yankee Blue!
Don't forget to check out the BYB Hub.