So, if I’ve got this straight, the Bombers will be starting the season sans Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez and Curtis Granderson. Call me a pessimist, but shelving 100 homeruns and 341 total runs from a team which lives on the long ball and which finished 18th in Defensive Efficiency Ratio will be disastrous.
Perhaps you believe in addition by subtraction and that our defense can only improve with Granderson and Jeter out. Perhaps you believe Brett Gardner (a career .266/.355/.368) will “carry” the team because he is “fast” or that Francisco Cervelli will grow an arm this year. One commenter noted circumstances similar to 1995 and hoped that a new 2013 version of the “Core Four” might rise from the ashes like a phoenix and usher the Yankees into a new era.
I agree that we are headed for a new era…like the drought that began in 1965, when the Yankees finished sixth after losing the 1964 World Series, and wouldn’t win another American League pennant until 1976. I hope that I’m wrong, but just in case I’m not (and rest assured, I’m not), here are the top 5 headlines that I’ll be looking for in the 2013 season:
5) “Cliff Lee Fails to Win his First World Series Championship Ring”: Cliff Lee admits to a reporter that he was surprised to learn that there were rude fans in Philadelphia and not just in New York. Lee’s impressive 2.04 ERA was no match for Philadelphia’s 684 total runs, and measly 3.6 runs per game when he pitched. “If only I could’ve pitched for a team that, say, finished second in team scoring and first in home runs ….”
4) “Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Emilio Bonifacio, and Josh Johnson Repeat Miami Marlin Success in Toronto”: Jays General Manager Alex Anthopoulos expressed bewilderment in an interview with reporters at the end of the 2013 season. “it turns out,” he stated, “that forking out ba-jillions for guys who couldn’t get it done in Miami turned out to be a bad idea.” Anthopoulos had to leave the interview early because he was in the midst of tearing up the floors in his rented apartment in order to replace his plumbing.
3) “Yankees Front Office Continues to Insist that they ARE NOT DESPERATE!”: In an unrelated story, Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman announced that they were in the process of signing Vernon Wells to a one-year contract extension.
2) “Nick Swisher Disappears in ALDS”: After batting .350/.540/.676 and 35 homeruns in the regular season, Nick Swisher smiles pretty for each of his 16 strikeouts at the hands of Tampa Bay pitchers. Alex Cobb wondered “what the hell ‘Swish’ was swinging at” when Cobb attempted to intentionally walk Swisher in the first inning to get the force at third.
1) “Yankees sweep season series with Boston, finish third in AL East with 87 Wins – still four wins better than AL Central Champ and AL West Champ.”