Daily Archives: June 19, 2013

In a cruel twist of fate, the Yankees will need A-Rod the most


Two weeks ago, it appeared that the Alex Rodriguez era in New York was coming to a crashing conclusion. MLB had announced they are seeking to suspend him and about twenty other ballplayers for having connections to Anthony Bosch, the PED supplier from the Biogenesis clinic in Miami.

Many Yankees fans reacted with pure joy, believing that A-Rod and his mess of a contract could finally be shed by the team. With him taking only baby steps in his long road back from a second hip surgery, the looming 100-game suspension almost certainly would ensure that 2013 would be a year without the 37-year old has-been slugger.

As the Yanks had just gotten Mark Teixeira and Kevin Youkilis back off of the disabled list, there was little doubt that the team wouldn’t continue its surprisingly hot start to the season. Yet, just returning home after losing six out of ten games on the West Coast, the Bombers have hit a low point. The offense can barely score more than two runs a game, and the pitching has been average at best.

Adding injury to insult, Tex and Youk were both placed back on the disabled list with the same injuries that had them land on it in the first place. Inflammation in the right wrist for Mark, and a herniated disc for Kevin, one that was just operated on and will take 10-12 weeks at the minimum to heal.

If it explains their anemic performance since first returning from the DL, so be it. But the fact remains that the disabled list has once again inflated back to including all of the potent Yankee hitters not named Robinson Cano. With Youkilis almost certainly done for the year, and the constant threat of Teixeira suffering the same fate, it is not looking promising for the lineup to get any better any time soon.

That is, until A-Rod comes back.

You read that right. As far as the public knows, the only evidence MLB has been able to sniff out of Biogenesis is the journal of names and drugs Bosch allegedly kept for keeping tabs on all his clients. If I were a betting man, the investigation could go on well into the winter. Meaning (when he is physically ready), A-Rod can come back and be re-inserted as the team’s everyday third baseman.

It sounds ridiculous and trust me it’s not something I want to see happen. I am just like the common fan who would forever love Brian Cashman if he was able to get #13 out of the Bronx somehow. But, putting all the baggage Rodriguez brings with him aside, the Yankees need offense in the worst way possible. The trade market looks incredibly thin for impact bats, and the Yankees probably don’t have the pieces to acquire one even if they tried to.

So if I’m the Yankees and I can count on A-Rod hitting .280, driving in runs, and having the occasional power to hit one out, why the hell wouldn’t he be welcomed back? The fact is, no one knows if Curtis Granderson will still have enough pop in his broken hands to be the main power source of the lineup, or if Derek Jeter’s cranky ankle will hold up for him to be a reliable top-of-the-order hitter for the stretch run.

At this point in the year, as the lineup looks as bad as its been in decades, Alex Rodriguez may be the last hope for the Yankees to have a shot at competing for a playoff spot. The Red Sox, Orioles, and Rays are not going away anytime soon, and they have the younger, more athletic, and overall healthier ball-clubs.

Counting on Lyle Overbay, Vernon Wells, and Travis Hafner to be a potent middle-of-the-order bunch come the dog days of summer and the tense moments of a pennant race is not the way to go. As lost as the season once seemed for the Yankees’ oldest, most banged-up stars, it may be up to the Captain, and more importantly A-Rod alone, to keep Yankee Stadium’s lights glowing for the month of October.

As crazy as it sounds, it may be the only rational route to another Yankee playoff berth.

Game 71 Lineup: Dodgers vs. Yankees

Game 1 was great, so let’s make Game 2 even better! Here is the starting lineup for the nightcap with Hughes on the mound!

Brett Gardner CF
Jayson Nix SS
Robinson Cano 2B
Vernon Wells DH
Thomas Neal RF
Ichiro Suzuki LF
David Adams 3B
Lyle Overbay 1V
Austin Romine C

Phil Hughes RHP


Game 70 Lineup: Dodgers vs. Yankees

Let’s play an (unplanned) two games today! Yankees vs. Dodgers! Here’s Game 1’s lineup!

Brett Gardner CF
Jayson Nix SS
Robinson Cano 2B
Vernon Wells LF
Thomas Neal DH
Ichiro Suzuki RF
David Adams 3B
Lyle Overbay 1B
Chris Stewart C

Hiroki Kuroda LHP

* Game 1 will broadcast on the YES Network. Game 2 will broadcast on My9.

Morning Bits

Good morning everyone!

Last night’s rainout has resulted in the scheduling of a doubleheader for today at Yankee Stadium.

The first game will begin at 1:05 PM ET and will be broadcast by WWOR.  Hiroki Kuroda(6-5, 2.78 ERA) will face Hyun-Jin Ryu(6-2, 2.85).

The second game will begin at 7:05 PM ET and will be broadcast by ESPN and YES.  Phil Hughes(3-5, 4.89 ERA) will face Chris Capuano(1-4, 5.45 ERA).

Now on to today’s news links:

Kieran Darcy of ESPNNewYork.com has this piece on Don Mattingly stating that not getting the manager job for his old team was a blessing.

Joel Sherman of the New York Post says an old and pricey,decaying roster is the same theme as last year for the Yankees.

Mike Fitzpatrick of the AP writes about Mark Teixeira heading to the DL again and Kevin Youkilis requiring back surgery that will sideline him for at least 10-12 weeks.

Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News has this article on Don Mattingly returning to Yankee Stadium for the first time with the Dodgers.

Have a great day everyone!