The Cavalry Is Coming

The prognostications for the Yankees 2013 season have featured a lot of “doom and gloom” by virtue of their aging rosters and the injuries that seem to keep racking up. However, things may not be as bleak as they seem and bear in mind that I am no doctor, although I have told innumerable people that I play one on TV, but from the news that has been coming out in regards to the slew of shelved Bombers it seems that this rag-tag group that will take the field on Opening Day will only have to “hold the fort” until June.

Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson, who accounted for a combined 67 homers and 190 RBI’s last season, are slated to return from their respective stints on the DL, in May (Granderson) and June (Teixeira). Even in an absolute worst case scenario where this team finds themselves double-digit games under .500 (which is unlikely), there will still be more-than-ample time for them to find their groove with their sluggers back in the lineup. The best case scenario would be if the former center-piece of the Jesus Montero trade, Michael Pineda is able to work his way back from injury during that same time span in June. Imagine for a second, what these same talking heads will say if Pineda and his power arm join this already-formidable rotation, it will undoubtedly make them front-runners for the AL East once again.

Take a moment and try to look at the laundry list of key injuries as a blessing in disguise because it may actually force this team to figure out a way to score runs outside of the “long ball.” God forbid the vaunted Yankees ever try to manufacture a run and win a game 3-2 as opposed to 8-5. In the absence of their sluggers, the Yankees will be forced to adapt and will look a lot more like the Oakland A’s than the Yankees, especially having acquired high OBP guys over the off-season like Travis Hafner and the renowned “Greek God of Walks,” Kevin Youkilis.

The Yankees being forced to adapt the way in which they score runs comes at a convenient time, as realignment (for better-or-worse) has made Inter-league play a daily occurrence. Basically what I’m trying to say is start getting used to a lot more base-stealing and bunting in order to move runners over, essentially some more National League style baseball. The prospect is also a little scary if you think about it, especially with the age of the pitching staff, the likelihood of a Starter getting injured is increased exponentially by having to pick up a bat, just ask Chien-Ming Wang.

From a spoiled Yankee fan’s perspective, a little adversity should make things more fun ala the latter Torre years where early season swoons eventually gave way to late-season rallies and playoff berths. Regardless, fans should saddle up for a bumpy ride over the first few months of this season and think about warmer weather and hopefully a healthier roster.

27 thoughts on “The Cavalry Is Coming

  1. I've been saying all along I like the Yankees chances with Gardner, Ichiro and Pettitte here for an entire season baring some freak injury and Nova has to be better then he was in the 2nd half of 2012. The pitching in general looks very good and as the piece says the Yankees only need to be within reach after the 1st 2 months. I actually think it will be more like Mid May is all they have to old on for. Besides I'm hopeful that Nunez offense will offset some of his defensive lapses. Here's to surprises all those Yankee critics in 2013.

  2. In all honesty I'm not concerned about this year at all. Tex has been in an offensive slump since 2010 but, he is being replaced by Youk so offensively its a wash. His defense is what will be missed. When Granderson returns (unfortunately, his last year in pinstripes) he will add a much needed boost to the lineup most likely in mid May. I feel like Nunez has been groomed to replace Jeter eventually anyway so I'm ok with that. I really don't expect to see Jeter out there everyday once he returns. Expect to see a lot of Nunez at short this year. I don't even care about Arod returning this year at this point. We could only hope he gets hit by a bus. This is a transition year for the Yanks not a lost season. What I don't understand is the Wells trade and the budget issue. Although I like the structure of the Wells deal I don't understand why Hal had the money for it now. I would have preferred Mesa. I'm getting nervous the way Hal is treating this team. I'm thinking he may let Cano go all because of the budget. This is a big market team, not the damn Astros. My only hope for this year is a Joba trade for a young outfielder and that Arod gets hit by a bus.

  3. Off topic but I thought this was worth posting here. I read the following on MLBTR this morning:

    "Turning to Cashman's Yankees, CBS Sports' Jon Heyman pulled no punches when reviewing the club's offseason, writing that "no one had a worse spring training than baseball's most storied team, maybe ever." Heyman further reports that, in spite of their public proclamations and massive payroll, the Yanks' brass is very concerned internally about the club's prospects for 2013. Likewise, ESPN's Jim Bowden predicted that New York would finish last in the AL East, writing that the club could sport a losing record for the first time since 1995."

    From my perspective, seriously does anyone believe that the Yankee "Brass" has confided how they feel about the teams prospects in 2013 or any other year for that matter to Heyman and Bowden. That post/comment doesn't pass the laugh test.

  4. Off topic…

    But I just have to take this moment to point out how effing incredible Lebron James is….

    WOW

  5. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong but it looks to me like the Yankees have 3 spots open on their 25 man active roster for opening day. Those 3 spots all look to be in the bullpen.

    Anyone have any ideas who might get them? At this point I think the only guaranteed spots go to: Mo, Robertson, Joba and Logan.

    Phelps at some point when Hughes returns will get one of them but in the meantime who gets the 3 spots?

  6. Im very concerned about Tex. Cashman said in todays paper that despite it being a 70% chance Tex avoids season ending surgery it feels as if its more 30-70 that it WILL require surgery historically speaking. Not good. I do not want a full season of Lyle Overbay. Please just trade for Carlos Pena. Wont take much

  7. A team can never rely on injured players coming back. You can never 'hold the fort'. You can never say 'we just have to play .500 until <insert date>.' Baseball doesn't work like that. You have to make due with the players you have on the field, and assume they are all you're going to have all season. If the Yankees can only 'hold the fort' with their April lineup, then they are in deep trouble. I know a lot of Yankee fans haven't had to deal with true injury seasons in recent memory, but you can't put on the rose tinted glasses and assume the injured guys are going to come back in June and everything will just snap into place. It just doesn't work like that, except in rare cases. Either the team has to step up and play as constructed in April and May, giving some leeway here and there with callups and whatnot, or they are not going to have a good season.