The 2012 New York Yankees have a team that is built to win the World Series, and offer plenty of everything for opposing teams to be very afraid about.
And here are the three reasons why:
From CC Sabathia to Mark Teixeira to Alex Rodriguez, if the Yankees have made one thing very clear this offseason it is how unhappy they were with their 2011 ALDS early exit. I saw first hand back in December how hard Sabathia was training by his evident weight loss.
Tex is throwing out the BSOHL card, Best-Shape-Of-His-Life. He recently tweeted about his 14-pound off-season weight loss, and told the NY Post that he plans to be laying down some bunts this season, which would be a first for the switch hitter. With the way defenses shift over when Tex bats lefty, it could really be a difference maker even if he only bunts 10 times all season. The first basemen also tweeted “One of the greatest thrills of my life…the victory parade down the “Canyon of Heroes”, while watching the New York football Giants parade on February 7th. It is safe to say that Tex wants to stroll down the parade route in NYC once again.
A-rod went as far as Germany; on the advice of NBA star Kobe Bryant to have experimental procedures on his knee and shoulder. A-rod is doing everything possible to make sure he stays healthy this season, and regardless what some critics say, the Yankees are better all around with A-rod active.
And the NY Post confirmed that Spring Training has already started for the Captain, who has been hard at work at Steinbrenner Field for well over two weeks already. This is standard for Derek Jeter, who is always the first to arrive at camp, and is happy to help 19-year old shortstop Cito Culver who is taking full advantage by shadowing the Captain. Jeter is already in the batting cage, as he wants to start 2012 the way he ended 2011.
Ok, reality is that no team is flawless but on paper you would be hard pressed to find many holes on the 2012 Yankees roster.
GM Brian Cashman worked with what he had to fill in the gaps by adding starting pitching, while building for the future. Trading star prospect Jesus Montero to Seattle Mariners for young pitchers Michael Pineda and prospect Jose Campos will be seen as genius especially if Pineda continues to get better. And adding a veteran innings eater like Hiroki Kuroda only solidifies the rotation as one of the top.
The bullpen is tops in baseball, as the one-two punch of David Robertson to Mariano Rivera proved dominate in 2011.
And the Yankees line-up will once again be a top-to bottom nightmare for opposing pitchers. Yesterday, ESPN’s Buster Onley tweeted that if the Yankees sign Raul Ibanez the projected line-up would likely be Jeter, Granderson, Cano, A-Rod, Teixeira, Swisher, Ibanez, Martin, and Gardner. That sounds pretty lethal to me.
Still, winning 97 games gets done on the field but there is no reason for Yankee fans not to be excited by what is written on pre-season paper.
3) A PERFECT MIX.
The Yankees have a perfect blend of star veterans and promising rookies, which is the textbook recipe for baseball success. Now it is up to Skipper Joe Girardi and his coaching staff to mélange the perfect cocktail by making good choices. I have total confidence in Girardi as a manager, but when he plays musical pitchers it does drive me crazy. That might have been due to his favoritism of keeping Sergio Mitre in, while pulling everyone else out. Mitre is a name I pray never to hear in Yankee Stadium again, unless he is on another team.
- I Like Pineda Already + Bye, Bye Scutero (janeheller.com)
- Today in Indefensible Journalism, Featuring Joel Sherman (slidingintohome.blogspot.com)
- The Evolution of “Retro” (riveraveblues.com)
- New York Yankees Week From Hell Ends With the Los Angeles Angels (ladylovespinstripes.com)
- New York Yankees vs. New York Giants (ladylovespinstripes.com)
- What I haven’t learned from the Yankees (yankees.lhblogs.com)
- Pineda Talks About Joining Yanks (slidingintohome.blogspot.com)
- New York Yankees News: Posada Retires, Pineda Arrives, What About A DH? (pinstripealley.com)
- Super Bowl Sunday (yankees.lhblogs.com)