12 Dec New York Yankees: 2017 Outlook
By: Lou Landers
The Yankees appear to have a bright future with young talent on the MLB roster and a bevy of young talented prospects in the minor leagues. They may be young, however I do believe they still have what it takes to compete now. In this article we will take a look at the pitching staff and the offense. I hope you enjoy!
The Pitching Staff:
I have numerous questions surround the starting rotation. After Tanaka who can be relied upon? And with Tanaka, is he not one pitch away from needing Tommy Jon surgery? His bone spur problem freaks me out. CC is old, hittable but I must say I was impressed by his bounce back 2016. He will have to be relied upon to eat innings and stay healthy if the Yankees don’t make any additional moves for their rotation. Then there is Micahel Pineda. He is beyond inconsistent, he can’t escape jams, his walks were up last year and he along with youngster Luis Severino are complete wild cards. In my opinion, Severino would be better served in the bullpen with the likes of Adam Warren, Tyler Clippard, Dellin Betantes and Chapman. After Pineda and Severino it may get worse. There are players who have limited MLB experience like Luis Cessa and Bryan Mitchell.
Now, to be a bit more positive, maybe Tanaka stays healthy, maybe CC improves even more, maybe Pineda finds himself again, and maybe Severino pitches like he did in 2015, if all of those things happen, and I mean all of them, then we have the makings of a formidable starting rotation.
Shifting over to the offense. One of Brett Gardner or Jacoby Ellsbury need to be traded. I love them both but they’re essentially the same player. Left handed hitter, thrower, great defender, solid base runners who can lead off. We don’t need 2 of them. Didi or Castro could hit 2nd behind one of them. IMO, although I prefer to keep him over Ellsbury, Gardner has more trade value coming off a gold glove award and his contract is much more team friendly. He’s arguably less injury prone than Ellsbury as well. The Yankees can certainly bring back a quality 3rd starter for Brett Gardner, something they desperately need. The departure of Gardner would also open up a spot in left field for star OF prospect Clint Frazier. More youth! I’m a big fan of getting a chance to see what these young kids can do. Speaking of the kids, how about that Gary Sanchez? He is pretty good! Id like to see more consistency from Aaron Judge and Tyler Austin though.
Lets look at the infield quickly. We can all agree that chase headley is pretty bad, so moving him for anything would be ideal. Internal replacements at 3B such as Mateo or Torres could be options. Don’t forget however that in the next 1-2 seasons, Manny Machado and Nolan Arenado can hit the open market, they are of course 2 of the leagues premier 3B. After break out seasons from Didi and Castro, the Yankees have one of the better middle infield tandems in all of MLB. Greg Bird will be returning from injury and should provide steady power from the 1B position.
All in all, the 2017 season should be an exciting one for the Yankees and their fans. The team will only start to get better from here. It won’t be long before they have another dynasty.
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