LADY AT THE BAT: Yankees Trending Wrong Way Despite Presence Of Talent

Friday, April 13, 2018

Yankees Trending Wrong Way Despite Presence Of Talent

So the Yankees, struggling at the start of the season, are 6-7 having just lost 2 of 3 in Boston.

And they almost gave away the one game they won, but the bullpen bailed out Masahiro Tanaka. Tanaka, Luis Severino and Sonny Gray were all bad in their respective Fenway starts. The rubber game of the series brought another Yankees loss, 6-3 with a 9th inning rally that fell short. Now it's on to Detroit.

There's not much to say about either series this past week, at home with Baltimore (three losses in four) or the Fenway struggle. Just some lousy baseball by the Yankees.

So many of the fans on social media already want the head of Aaron Boone. Remember, George fired Yogi after 16 games in 1985. The Yankees started winning under Billy Martin, just not enough, falling two games short of Toronto in the division. Johnny Keane got the boot by the CBS owned Yankees in 1965 after game 20 (and the Yankees rallied for awhile for returning manager Ralph Houk, but still finished last).

Truth is, for the Steinbrenner siblings, these aren't their father's Yankees. I think Boone is safe for awhile.

But for those of you who seemed determined to trash this team because of poor play through 13 games, why not take that frustration to the extreme?

The Yankees were sellers a couple years ago. You don't think the Yankees of 2018 will recover? Okay let's do the deed.



Let the sell off commence.

Brett Gardner is a potential free agent following the season (with a club option for 2019). Jettison him and his salary somewhere and bring along a couple of prospects. While we are at it, David Robertson, whose contract is up this winter can also go for prospects. There are some who cannot be traded, like Tanaka, but Sonny Gray could be had from the rotation for someone needing a starter

And if you really want to get crazy, let's see if Giancarlo Stanton might be willing to waive his no trade clause (he did it once, you know) as one of the other three teams Stanton had considered might offer enough in prospects for the Yankees to part company with last year's NL MVP.

Is this what everybody wants? Some of the comments I've read seem to suggest it.

Alright, enough of this. What the Yankees really need, first and foremost, is to settle down and see if a season can be built first out of what they already have, plus getting guys gets healthy. Then  a significant call-up or two and maybe that one big trade we have all been waiting for.

Let us count the ways.........

With Aaron Hicks back, the Yankees face issues of when all the remainder of the disabled players will return. Barring another outfield injury it appears Clint Frazier, when he returns, will be optioned to AAA. Anything involving Frazier playing every day is a good thing, even in the minors. Unfortunately for Frazier, his performance at AAA may be about as much showcasing for the inevitable mid season trade for pitching.

There are more roster moves to be expected in addition to sending Frazier to AAA as outfield depth:

CC Sabathia
Has anybody heard if CC will return from the disabled list when he is eligible, or within a few days, thus missing only one start in the process? I am not yet in the camp saying CC should retire because he has nothing left in the tank. I do believe ultimately, CC's career will come to an end due to an injury or chronic condition such as his knees. I am not yet convinced that time has arrived.

Greg Bird
They are saying late May, perhaps, for Bird's return to the lineup. As with CC, I am not in the camp that says Bird is so fragile he will never make it as a regular in the Bronx. Some injuries do linger. Some recur or need additional treatment unforeseen at the time of prior treatment. Of course, an injury can stall or threaten a career. Not thinking Bird is at that point just yet, past history with Nick Johnson notwithstanding.


Brandon Drury
Tell you what, I am more concerned with Drury's issues than Sabathia's or Bird's. Any type of head or vision issues are tough on a ballplayer. Scary to think this has been affecting Drury for a few years in one way or another. Seems uncertain Drury will be of help anytime soon. If he can return then Miguel Andujar can get some much needed work at AAA rather than the Bronx.

Jacoby Ellsbury
Here's everybody's favorite. But the Yankees cannot rid themselves of him due to the albatross that is his remaining contract. Why not try and make the most of it?. Maybe he can become a useful part time player once healthy? Wishful thinking, perhaps, but why not try and get some production from the veteran, even in a limited role?

Or perhaps there are some things more exciting to consider......

Gleyber Torres
Gleyber is not already up with the big club because he blew out his elbow in a head first slide last June. But he is not far away. Second base and third base are working disasters so far. Certainly, if timed correctly, a Torres call up could be the shot in the arm this team needs.

Other youth
Lost in the drudgery of Thursday's loss at Fenway is the relief performance from a young Domingo German, who pitched three solid innings. There are other kids at AAA and AA who may earn an opportunity as the season progresses. One is pitcher Chance Adams. Others may be knocking on the door as well.

We need a pitcher (?)
Yes, I think if there is a big mid season addition it will be a pitcher. Lots of Yankees fans were unhappy when both Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole went to Houston in separate deals. But if the Yankees are showing some life and are contending around mid season they might actually go out and snag another quality starting pitcher. Prospects will have to be dealt and Clint Frazier is expendable given the current Yankees outfield situation. Other prospects will have to go as well if the Yankees want the quality of a Verlander or Cole.

And never forget, the Yankees have a new core group developing as we speak. Didi Gregorius, Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez and Luis Severino are leading that charge and may be joined by a few others.

But if all of this fails, bring on the fire sale.

First give it some time to work out.  We're still only  thirteen games into the season, everyone.

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