Ranking the New York Yankees’ 5 Biggest Offseason Needs
Ranking New York Yankees' 5 Biggest Offseason Needs
The New York Yankees missed the playoffs this season for only the second time in 19 years. The team is going to lose some of their best players while the rest of the division keeps progressing. The fact that they ended up in third place in perhaps the toughest division in baseball with all the adversity they saw is a testament to them.
This may have been Joe Girardi's best coaching job to date. He dealt with more injuries to high priced players than has ever been seen. Derek Jeter only played 17 games after having a season where he was seventh in MVP voting. They were without Mark Teixeira after an injured wrist that occurred during the World Baseball Classic kept him out for all but 15 games, and he has been another story with his regression at the plate as well. Alex Rodriguez missed well over 100 games as did Curtis Granderson. Travis Hafner missed a bunch a games (surprising, I know) throughout the season. Francisco Cervelli was hurt and suspended, causing him to miss the boat on getting a chance to get most of the catching duties. Kevin Youklis took the money and ran while being out for the last four months of the season. Yankees fans still have no idea what Michael Pineda's stuff looks like. That isn't even talking about players like Andy Pettitte, Ivan Nova, Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes, Jayson Nix, and Eduardo Nunez who have all missed time throughout the season.
This team was trying to win games with a lineup that included Lyle Overbay, Vernon Wells, David Adams and Mark Reynolds at different times. They rode the big acquisition of Alfonso Soriano to go on a torrid run mid-season to put them back in the Wild Card race and were in it until the middle of September.
With the crazy amount of free agents and retirees that the Yankees will have to replace, they have a serious amount of work to do. With so many question marks, where are the Yankees' biggest points of need?
5. Third Base
Alex Rodriguez has a good chance of missing a whole lot of time in the 2014 season, and I don't think Brian Cashman and the rest of the front office could be any happier. Even so, they need to figure out how they are going to replace his production next season. They tried last season with Youklis, which was a disaster. They tried to bring up the young Adams, and that was even worse. They need to find a quick fix because Rodriguez is still signed throughout 2017. The Biogenesis scandal will end up saving the Yankees $26 million if it keeps Rodriguez out for the whole season. Thank goodness for small miracles.
4. Second Base
Will Robinson Cano really leave the Yankees? Is he actually looking for $300 million? That is a ton of money. The Yankees have said that they will not go for a ten year deal. They have made inquiries on Brandon Phillips from the Cincinnati Reds in case that Cano decides to go elsewhere. The team no doubt would like to keep their best offensive player from the past few years, but at what cost is it worth it? I would try to trade for Phillips, who is a little underpaid. The price may be "high", but it won't be as high as what you would pay Cano.
The catcher position was hurting pretty bad after Russell Martin left for the Pittsburgh Pirates in the offseason. They tried to ride Chris Stewart and Austin Romine for most of the season, but that was lackluster at best. Romine is a good prospect, but how well is he going to work out after seeing him last season? Cervelli was suspended and hurt all season as mentioned before. Brian McCann is on the Yankees' radar, but is he worth the injury risk? Is he worth the money? They need to make a decision on how they are going to go after this position.
How do you move on when the greatest player at a position has been in said position for 17 seasons and now he is retiring? Mariano Rivera has officially pitched his last pitch. He has played his last game for the Yankees, and the bullpen will never be the same. There are adults who were not alive when Rivera was not on the Yankees roster, and now he is gone. The Yankees will soon find out what it is like to have unknown at the back of the bullpen. Is David Robertson the long term answer? Hopefully he plays better than he did two seasons ago when he had the chance and lost it to Rafael Soriano.
1. Starting Pitchers
Andy Pettitte has decided to retire once again, only this time he is not coming back. Hiroki Kuroda has declined the qualifying offer he was given, but he may stilll return. Phil Hughes will no longer be launching beach balls to fly ball hitters at Yankee Stadium. C.C. Sabathia did not look like an ace at all last season. Is Ivan Nova the best pitcher currently on the roster? This staff needs a ton of work if the Yankees will be anything next year. The problem is there are no good pitchers on the current market. This may be the reason next season will be figuratively longer than this season.