New York Yankees fans have been waiting all season for injured starters like Mark Teixeira and Kevin Youkilis to return, as both did earlier this week. There was a feeling that once the lineup got a little healthier, this team would once again be the Bronx Bombers of old.
It’s too early to say for sure, but it appears like those fans will be extremely disappointed in 2013.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise for Yankees fans that saw their ineptitude in the postseason last year. They hit .188 in the playoffs, and had the worst LCS batting average in MLB history when they hit .157 while being swept by the Detroit Tigers. Some of those names have returned for the 2013 season, and the results aren’t much better.
Currently, the Yankees are batting .246 as a team, good for 12th in a 15-team American League. No one is hitting over .300, and veteran players like Vernon Wells and Ichiro Suzuki are already showing signs of slowing down.
This is why so many baseball experts predicted the Yankees would miss the playoffs: too many injuries, not enough offensive production and a line-up built around guys who were stars in 2006 (Travis Hafner, Lyle Overbay, Ichiro, Wells).
The return of Derek Jeter could provide a spark at the top of the order, but who knows what type of player Jeter will be when he comes back? He’ll be 39 this month and coming off a broken ankle that cut his 2012 postseason short. Alex Rodriguez has resumed baseball workouts, but has been a shadow of his former self the last couple of years.
A hot start to the 2013 season made the dire preseason predictions for the Yankees seem outrageous, but as we turn the calendar to June, it’s looking more and more like they might have been right.