Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Are The Yankees World Series Contenders?

The New York Yankees have made a number of big signings this off season as they've improved their lineup as well as their starting rotation.

Not only did they fix the holes in their outfield but they brought in Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran two guys who will make a huge impact in their lineup with speed and power. The Bronx Bombers also signed catcher Brian McCann, a lefty power hitting catcher who will look to take advantage of the short porch in right field. With those moves and the return of Derek Jeter and first baseman Mark Teixeira the Yankees 2014 lineup looks like this:

1. Jacoby Ellsbury - CF
2. Derek Jeter - SS
3. Carlos Beltran - RF
4. Mark Teixeira - 1B
5. Brian McCann - C
6. Alfonso Soriano - DH
7. Brett Gardner - LF
8. Kelly Johnson - 3B
9. Brian Roberts - 2B

That's a stacked lineup. Sure Brian Roberts is no replacement for Robinson Cano but the team has filled other holes which will make it easier for fans to forget about losing Cano. Also do not be shocked if another move is made before the season starts, to improve second or third base.
The biggest question mark for the Yankees coming into this year was their pitching. They lost Phil Hughes from their starting rotation and the great Mariano Rivera from their bullpen.

Signing Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka might have cost a lot of money ($155 mil) but it was something that needed to be done. If CC Sabathia can return close to his Cy Young days then the top of this rotation will be one of the best in the league.

The Yankees pitching staff will be good enough for this offense to win them games, and with Michael Pineda returning eventually, it'll only get better.

1. CC Sabathia
2. Masahiro Tanaka
3. Hiroki Kuorda
4. Ivan Nova
5. David Phelps

As far as their bullpen goes, they have not done enough to fill Mariano Rivera's shoes. The only arm they brought in was lefty Matt Thornton who isn't a closer. You would have to assume the job is for David Robertson who is a great set up man, but is shaky as a closer with 8 saves and 10 blown saves in his career.

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