Well its December 22, only a few days left of 2011, and what have the Yankees done? Well they got CC Sabathia to a contract extension back in October before Halloween. That was awesome. They also signed Freddy “The Chief” Garcia to a 1yr deal. They have also signed various players to some minor league contracts while also drafting 2 new pitchers. Other than that nothing else has been done.
As you can see, the Yankees have made some moves in the off season, but besides the CC extension, nothing big, nothing exciting. I know you Yankee fans are getting restless, you want Cashman to bring in some awesome new pitcher into the rotation. After all, lets face it, the current rotation isn’t good enough, right? I mean, the Yankees did win 97 games last year, and they won the division. The Tigers were a very, very good opponent, but at the end of the day, they got the clutch hitting when they needed to and the Yankees didn’t. So is this rotation good enough to win it all?
Well never say never, I mean the Cardinals did win it all with a decent rotation, but a fantastic bullpen and offense. The Yankees have one of the best bullpens in the AL, one of the best offenses. The rotation is complete with five guys, but there is just too many question marks. CC is CC, but then there is everyone else. Nova had a wonderful rookie season, but can he keep it up? Phil Hughes had a horrible season after winning 18 games the year before. Some bizarre injury put him on the sidelines for most of the year, so now we ask, can he bounce back? A.J. well you know the story with him. Great pitcher with good stuff, but he is just so inconsistent, and bad most of the time. Then there is Freddy, he pitched pretty well last year, but the question is can he last all year?
If anything should happen to any of these guys, the Yankees have kiddies in the minors who are ready to come up if needed. Guys like the Killer Bs, though I think the Yankees would rather have them stay there to work on their fastball command. But there is also kids like David Phelps, Adam Warren, and probably first in line is Hector Noesi.
So it’s not like the Yankees don’t have any pitching, they do, they have plenty. The question is are they good enough to win it all???
We all know the pitching FA list was not great this year. C.J. Wilson was the best out there, but in my opinion not what the Yankees need. So he is gone, he signed with the Angels.
My choice was Mark Buerhle, but on a short term deal. I don’t know to what degree the Yankees were interested in Buerhle, but the price was not right on either of these two guys. There is still some FA pitcher out there, but again, not what the Yankees need.
The Yankees need a solid #2 guy behind CC. The FA market doesn’t have that anymore, so whats left? Trades? Well you could trade for Gio Gonzalez and give up your top kiddies Jesus Montero, Manny Bannuelos, and more. John Danks? No, he just signed a contract with the White Sox yesterday so he is out. Jair Jurjens? No thanks, he might have injury concerns, plus it seems a bit odd the Braves would want to trade him away. Matt Garza? Good pitcher, but no, again price not right.
All these teams out there know what the Yankees have in their farm system and they want the best kiddies. Cashman is right to preach “patience” and not pull the trigger. Yes the rotation is not great, but at leas the Yankees have five starters. Look over to the Red Sox, they probably need two pitchers since Lackey is out for the year and Matsuzaka is probably is still injured. They still need a closer, possibly a setup man is Bard goes to the rotation, heck they might need at RF! My point is while the rotation may not be great, someone always has it worse.
We have CC Monster leading our rotation, one of the best in the game. I think Nova will only get better next season. We have to hope that Phil bounces back and I think he will. If he does then that is a huge acquisition without paying any extra money or trading anyone. A.J. well I hope he has a better year, and Freddy is our anchor as the #5 man. Remember, we have Noesi, Phelps, Warren, and the Bs waiting in the minors if anything goes on. If Cashman is able to find a trade for a good pitcher without having to give up the Bs, Montero, or Phelps then good. If not, well we have to make the best of what we got.
I realize there are a lot of Ifs with this rotation, but if they did it last year, they can do it again this year. Remember, the bullpen will still be a huge strength going into the season, as well as the offense. They say “pitching wins games” well that is true, but there is also defense and offense.
So while things might not look great right now because there is really no “new” Yankee coming in right now to join the team, this is still a very, very good team capable of doing great things.
Cashman hasn’t made any big moves because the price is not right. Cashman knows what he is doing, we as fans need to be patient and wait to see what happens. Only time will determine what happens.