If you are a Yankee fan and in the Northeast... there is nothing better than today. The Yankees are opening "Pitchers and Catchers" and baseball officially begins.
I woke up to a tweet from a Yankee fanatic and dare I say BYB fanatic, Joanie:
She's the best. Bottom line, there's nothing better than that. The Yankees have what they have and they did it without signing a single, top Free Agent. While Yankeeland is in the tizzy over that, they need to look big picture here. The Yankees are obviously saving every penny for the day Bryce Harper becomes available. Get the countdown clock ready.@TheBronxBoxer @npatel114 @RachelG48NYY @AnthonyMichaeI @KingAgamemnon @BleednYankeeBlu HAPPY PITCHERS AND CATCHERS DAY!#Yankees— Joanie Giammarino (@Joangyankee) February 18, 2016
We have a good team. Don't listen to the doubters, they will bring you down. I mean, sure there are weaknesses there always are, but there is nothing we cannot overcome. Let's not forget that the Yankees weren't expected to be anywhere near where we were last year. But, we made the playoffs before losing to a young, determined Astros team. It happens, and that's the game.
Players to keep an eye on for me personally are CC Sabathia, Aroldis Chapman, Chase Headley, Dustin Ackley, Starlin Castro, Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner. These players will be key to this Yankee team in my opinion and we just need to keep an eye on how they handle not only injury, but personal demons and Yankee fan pressure.
The Bronx is a big stage, and guys like Castro and Chapman, while gamers, have never seen that pressure in pinstripes.
I have faith in CC because CC has faith in himself. He's done something heroic for himself and his family and while you can criticize him for walking away from his team right before playoffs last year, there is no question, he feared his life was spiraling out of control. And so, he made a hard choice. It will turn out to be the right choice. And I expect that knee to hold up too.
Chase Headley is getting a bad rap by fans who just think he's done, but he won't be. He will play the game hard like he always does. Let's not forget that last season was his first full one in pinstripes. He's got his feet wet, and he will be fine.
Dustin Ackley is our new Brendan Ryan and no doubt will be needed at first base, second base, and third. He'll be busy, but I like his lefty bat a lot. It will be his key to the season.
Brett Gardner was rumored to be trade-bait all off season. His feelings no doubt are hurt, but look for him to prove to the Yankees that they need him on the club for production and grit alone. He'll be an animal this season.
Jacoby Ellsbury, who's rolling in money after that ridiculous contract has to prove to the Yankees and their fan base that it was worth it. He needs to stay healthy, and he needs to have a monster season or he will be crucified. Hey, that's what happens when folks perceive you as greedy.... you gotta work extra hard.
So let pitchers and catchers begin. No question many of the New York sports writers are down there taking pictures through the fence, but that will change over the weekend and we here at BYB will try to bring you photos of the players working out in Tampa as much as we can.
It's a big week. It's cold in the Northeast, but when Pitchers and Catchers happen, it doesn't seem as cold. It means Spring is coming...
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