It's been months since the Yankees offered fans anything beyond the Jeter farewell tour and acid-reflux. And I'm tired of sportswriters/announcers/YES men who serve as Yankee-brass enablers. (For now, let's leave John and Suzyn out of this.) From day one, the 2014 Yankees looked hopelessly out of whack. So let's see what people said back when it might have mattered.
George King, of the (otherwise Murdochian sleazefest) NY Post, never drank the YES Network Kool-Aid. He picked the Yankees to finish third in the AL East, saying...
Despite spending $441 million on Masahiro Tanaka, Jacoby Ellsbury, Brian McCann and Carlos Beltran, the Yankees as presently constructed have very large holes that threaten to swallow the season before May bleeds into June.
Damn straight. King also correctly assessed the success ratio of Ivan Nova.
Ivan Nova’s track record is scary. He has enough stuff to succeed in the majors, but every time he strings together five or six strong starts he goes backward. The Yankees can’t have Nova, who was sent to Triple-A last summer, pitch inconsistently this year. Now, they need him to pitch 180 innings and avoid the potholes. Unfortunately, that might be asking too much.
King saw problems in the bullpen, (then again, who didn't?)
David Robertson will be fine as Mariano Rivera’s replacement, but who replaces Robertson in the eighth inning is a bigger concern. Boone Logan’s replacement is Matt Thornton. Logan wasn’t an All-Star, and his elbow barked at the end of last year, but his final season in pinstripes was his best.
King did completely fan on one player.
Carlos Beltran, Jacoby Ellsbury and Brian McCann drew a lot of attention because they came from the outside and cost a bundle of money. That has provided the 38-year-old outfielder/DH Alfonso Soriano a lot of shade in a walk year. In 58 games last year with the Yankees, Soriano hit 17 homers and drove in 50 runs. Double those numbers and Soriano sets himself up for a juicy deal as a free agent...
Brett Gardner and Alfonso Soriano are All-Stars. There are bigger names in the Yankees’ lineup, but Gardner is on the verge of a breakout season and Soriano is in a walk year.
Nobody gets everything right. Give him credit: King did pretty well.
As presently constructed, the Yankees will go 83-79 and miss the postseason for a second straight year finishing third in the AL East.
Right now, the Yankees are five games over .500, but floundering. When the smoke clears, King might hit the win total... dead on.