I let out more than a few expletives yesterday. One minute, I was finding out that C.C. Sabathia was heading to the disabled list for a short stay, and on the next I hear about Andy Pettitte’s broken ankle. Almost instantly, the Yankees lost their dual aces, and replaced them with a struggling Triple-A B prospect and Freddy Garcia. I’m probably not the only Yankee fan who felt the rug pulled out from under me last night.
A few months ago, these developments would have been disastrous. Hiroki Kuroda, Ivan Nova and Phil Hughes are going to have to carry the rotation for the time being, and the offense is going to have to compensate.
But really, these are Yankee fan problems. The team is solidly in first place, 5 games ahead of the Baltimore Orioles, and 6.5 games ahead of Boston and Tampa. They’ve been unstoppable for a month and a half now. More than any team in baseball, the Yankees can give up some slack. Almost any other team in baseball would love to be in our position.
Nick Swisher and Robinson Cano are still hitting the crap out of the ball. The bullpen hasn’t missed a beat after Mariano Rivera’s injury. Hughes, Kuroda, and Nova all have their flaws, but are pitching deep, effective starts. Defense has improved. Brett Gardner will hopefully return soon. The Yankees are perfectly capable of maintaining their position.