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Yankees: 3 situations to watch in Spring Training

Can you believe 2014 Spring Training is finally here?

George M. Steinbrenner Field – Tampa, Florida

Well, technically this coming Friday is the official date when New York Yankees pitchers and catchers are required to report to Tampa, Florida…. the home Spring-time home of the Bronx Bombers. Position players will report on February 19th with the team’s first full workout the day after that.

Yesterday, the Yankees officially introduced their new toy, Japanese pitching phenom Masahiro Tanaka at a press conference in the Bronx.

Actually seeing Tanaka don the pinstripes heightened my excitement and reservations at the same time that a new season is here.

After missing the playoffs last season, I learned nothing is fail-safe anymore for the Yankees.

The fact that this past off-season was full of mega signings makes me more apprehensive about being overly confident and presumptuous that it won’t happen again.

Bottom line is this Yankees team is heading into Spring Training with a lot unknowns and not enough back-up plans… just in case.

Let me just say that Spring Training is not a good deterrent for projecting what a team’s regular season success will be. That is because veterans consider this their warm up, while youngsters are duking it out hoping to earn a spot on the 25-roster. For example this is not a time to judge Tanaka as starter, or David Robertson as a closer. Continue reading ‘Yankees: 3 situations to watch in Spring Training’ »

Yankees: Manny Banuelos, Michael Pineda, and me

Good things come to those who wait. 

Pitchers Dellin Betances (l.) and Manuel Banuelos will head for Double-A Trenton after spring training, no matter how well they perform during the Yankee camp. (Image courtesy of NY Daily News)

Pitchers Dellin Betances (l.) and Manuel Banuelos will head for Double-A Trenton after spring training, no matter how well they perform during the Yankee camp. (Image courtesy of NY Daily News)

The question is does this praise of the art of patience pertain in baseball?

I promise that Yankees Universe hopes so, as everyone from the front office to the New York fans has awaited the arrival of pitchers Michael Pineda and Manny Banuelos for what feels like an eternity.

But times up, as the 2014 Yankees do not want to be remembered for redefining what is considered old for a veteran roster.

Directly, the arrivals of Pineda and Banuelos hit home for me big time.

Individually, I could not get enough of either one before both succumbed to arm injuries. Pineda ending up having serious shoulder surgery, and Banuelos requiring Tommy John.

The crazy thing is that was two years ago, something my trainer, who happens to be a big Yankees fan, reminded me of just this past week. Continue reading ‘Yankees: Manny Banuelos, Michael Pineda, and me’ »

Yankees: What song do you want David Robertson to enter too?

David Robertson (Photo credit: Keith Allison)

With Spring Training right around the corner, baseball fanatics, like myself, tend to over-analyze possibilities for the forthcoming season.

Last night, instead of going forward I got a tad nostalgic. I found myself glued to YouTube watching videos of the newly retired New York Yankees closer Marino Rivera.

From last season’s All-Star Game, the 2004 ALCS Game 7, the 2009 World Series Game 6 to Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte’s retrieval of Mo from the mound for the last time at Yankee Stadium…. I felt blessed to have seen this man’s substantial career. Well, most of it anyway.

Admittedly, I got emotional as the realization that I will never see this man run out to Metallica’s Enter Sandman in the ninth inning again finally hit me.

Talk about being in denial, as I felt like the poster child for the term taking something for granted. Continue reading ‘Yankees: What song do you want David Robertson to enter too?’ »

Yankees Hot Stove: A Fernando feeling

On Super Bowl Sunday, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reported that, “There’s a feeling that a team like the Yankees may pluck Rodney, or someone of his ilk, to ensure they have another closer in case Dave Robertson breaks down or isn’t up to the task.”

Fernando Rodney pitching for the Detroit Tigers.

Fernando Rodney pitching for the Detroit Tigers. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

With the seemingly questionable state of the Yankees bullpen, Carfardo’s sentiment makes total sense.

Adding a veteran who has dominated in the AL East, like Fernando Rodney could prove to be a difference maker just like Rafael Soriano was back in 2009.

As of today, the bullpen consists of D-Rob, Shawn Kelley, Preston Claiborne and Matt Thornton with the remaining spots will got to prospects like Dellin Betances or Chase Whitley. This group, while not a horrific bunch, is an indecisive one that poses risk.

Shoring up a proven closer like Rodney would bring experience and added depth to the Yankees bullpen. Especially since the Yankees will not have Mariano Rivera running out to Enter Sandman in the ninth inning for the first time in almost two decades. Continue reading ‘Yankees Hot Stove: A Fernando feeling’ »

Yankees: Super Bowl is over…. do you know what that means?

First off, my apologies my lack of writing but I have been sick with the flu the last few days and am still not close to 100%.


Seattle (Photo credits:

My weekend’s goal was to muster up enough energy to watch Super Bowl XLVIII, which turned out to be as exciting as watching paint dry.

The Seahawks played a great game, but Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos undeniably aided Seattle’s victory by making every mistake possible from the get-go.

The highlight of my Super Bowl Sunday was getting to watch Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, as they put my first reservations to shame.

Just case you missed it… Continue reading ‘Yankees: Super Bowl is over…. do you know what that means?’ »

Yankees: Do you know this isn’t your 2009 Bronx Bombers?

“It’s about winning the summer. It’s not about winning the winter. That’s what we’re going to try to do again.”

Yankee Stadium - 4/13/11

Yankee Stadium – 4/13/11 (Photo credit: jvdalton)

Those are the words that Boston Red Sox Johnny Gomes told the Boston Globe when asked what he thought of the New York Yankees off-season spending spree.

And the reigning champ could not have said it any better, as the Yankees big winter makes them the team with something to prove heading into 2014.

What is truly baffling is how a $500 million winter spending spree could leave any team with uncertainties but that is the state of the 2014 Yankees.

And anyone blind to the questions looming is suffering from déjà vu circa 2009.

What separates 2009 from today is that was money better spent, and that championship season the team was not banking on veterans coming off injuries to stay healthy or bust. Continue reading ‘Yankees: Do you know this isn’t your 2009 Bronx Bombers?’ »