Thursday, April 28, 2016
RED FLAGS, PITCHING & I TOLD YOU SO!
Are the New York Yankees broken? It's only April but it is hard to find a lot to be excited about right now unless it happens to be Nick Swisher related. The fan favorite that is stashed down in AAA has me more excited then the Major League team. I find that disturbing, but it's true. I am watching his stats everyday with excitement meanwhile I can barely watch my television without groaning every few minutes. Something has to change and fast.
The offense is just plain offensive. What happened to the Bombers we all know and love? They have never been great at small ball but at this point I miss those long balls. At least that gave me something to cheer for and feel good about. I am just waiting for that magical turning point to come. Last night when I turned on the game and looked at the box score and saw the top of the order going one for twelve I shook my head. The sad thing is I wasn't surprised when I saw it. I just shook my head and said "oh, the usual" like it was no big deal. Not hitting is not ok.....and fans being complacent about not hitting isn't either. Red flag.
One of the biggest concerns going into this season was the starting rotation. I have no doubt that when Aroldis Chapman is eligible to return on May 9th that the Yankees will have the best bullpen in baseball....but we have to get to them first. At this rate, with the dreadful performance of the starters the bullpen could be a non-factor. The Yankees not scoring runs coupled with the starters not giving quality starts is going to spell disaster for this team. With 20 major league starts under their belt the Yankee starts have the second worst ERA in the American League.
Right now Masahiro Tanaka is the only starter who has an ERA that is better than league average. The Yankees also can't navigate through a lineup three times. The Yankees have a major league worst record of a .963 OPS and that is how you pitch your way to a loss. Look at last years pitching staffs with the best ERA's.....you will notice those were playoff teams. In recent years the Yankees answer to fixing voids in other areas by trading away pitchers like Shane Greene, David Phelps and Adam Warren now you have to wonder if those moves are going to be beneficial in the long run given the teams current pitching situation. Pitching wins baseball games. Red flag.
And last but not least....I think I have heard the words "I told you so!" more often then I care to acknowledge. Most of those are in reference to friends who follow other teams telling me that the Yankees will be last in the AL East this year. If I hear "I told you guys that you needed to sign Tim Lincecum" one more time I may lose my mind. Haters seem to think he is the answer to the rotation problems but it is deeper then just not signing Lincecum. It's only April, and plenty of baseball left. I know it won't stay this way but come on......I don't want to hear this is April! It's too early for the "I was right and you were wrong" victory dances. The Yankees need to prove all of the haters wrong.
Good teams learn to adapt and find ways to win games. It's easier said then done, but baseball isn't meant to be easy. The bottom line here is the offense and the starters need to fix the problem that they created. They have no one to blame but themselves and their success this season depends on it.
BYB Senior Writer and Editor
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