The Yankees have numerous Achilles heels 18


When the Yankees are a cohesive unit, they’re a force to be reckoned with. However, every team has an Achilles heel, which is something their opponents take advantage of.

The Yankees, despite their 21-10 record, actually have quite a few Achilles heels on their roster. But which players are considered the Achilles heels on the team?

1. CC Sabathia

At the beginning of the 2017 campaign, you wouldn’t have thought Sabathia would be the Achilles heel of the team. After all, Sabathia had a 1.47 ERA during his first three starts of the season. However in his last four starts he has a 9.58 ERA, which includes his five run outburst in the second inning of Tuesday night’s loss. The Yankees have insisted they have plenty of patience regarding Sabathia, but if Sabathia continues to struggle–or put the Yankees in a difficult situation as they compete for the American League East–would the Yankees actually consider moving him from the rotation to the bullpen?

2. Chris Carter

The Yankees initially signed Chris Carter to hit home runs and compete with Greg Bird for the first base job. Unfortunately, the Yankees aren’t impressed with Carter’s production. In 57 at-bats so far, Carter only has one home run and a .277 OBP. He’s also struck out 22 times in those 57 at-bats, and has a -0.2 WAR going into Thursday’s series against the Houston Astros. To be frank, if Bird and Tyler Austin weren’t hurt, Carter’s time with the team would probably be numbered. Also, I’m sure Mariano Rivera has had better at-bats than Carter…and Rivera was a pitcher who rarely picked up a bat.

3. Greg Bird

Before the Yankees put Bird on the DL, he was actually performing worse than Carter. Bird has six hits in 60 at-bats so far this season, but the explanation for Bird’s poor numbers might be his injured ankle. Maybe if Bird finally rests the ankle, he’ll come back to be the player the Yankees saw during Spring Training. If not, the Yankees are willing to help Bird through his growing pains, especially since the rest of the team has performed well.

4. Dellin Betances

Betances isn’t an Achilles heel because of his numbers; in fact he’s done quite well if you look at his numbers on paper. What makes him an Achilles heel is he almost never has an easy inning. Betances tends to work himself in and out of trouble. It’s worked for Betances so far, but there’s going to be an instance where Betances’ Houdini act isn’t going to work. Betances’ act could be the difference in the Yankees winning and losing games, and I don’t think the fans have enough Xanax to get through his heart palpitating outings over the course of the season.

5. Chase Headley

I know, it’s odd that I’m adding Headley to this list especially after he’s performed well at the plate. However, we’re not going to discuss Headley’s offensive performance. We’re going to talk about Headley’s defense. In 28 games at third, Headley already has seven errors , most of them on throws. Headley has prevented the Yankees from losing with his bat. But his glove needs work, especially if the Yankees want their pitchers to last longer in games.


18 thoughts on “The Yankees have numerous Achilles heels

  • Celerino

    Carter and Bird are really just one Achilles heel. If Bird is ok, than Carter, or whoever occupies the spot, is just the 25th guy and not at all critical. I might include Pineda. He's been pretty good so far, but it will take a few more starts before I have confidence in him.

  • buckeye balls

    Headley will make 30 errors without Teixeira-he could have 8 but they gave it to Holiday. Routine throws should be chest high-he misses every time. Carter looks awful-he may not be able to produce part time. The corners really worry me this year

    • fuster

      I think that we all would prefer to see Bird playing first, Headley staying at third and Torreyes continuing to do an admirable job as the utility infielder.

      this team's offense is good, but the big lefty bat that Bird has shown that he possesses, is needed in the middle of the batting order.

  • tom

    Headley's fielding defense is fine but it is his throwing that rountinely makes me dying my hair black to keep up with my age.

    I don't think Yankees will ever remove CC from the rotation until September. One bad inning last night does not make the conisdeation to move him to bullpen any stronger.

    Carter's OBP is killing me but I won't be so sure about 4A players like Refsnyder or Choi that would outperform Carter. I understand Ellsbury was spotted fielding at 1B but I am not sure whether or not he being there as an extra man. I won't play Ellsbury at 1B unless Frazier, not Fowler, is ready to play MLB. Ellsbury, Fowler and Gardner in the same lineup? Forget it.

    Headley could move to 1B permanently if Bird isn't a go. That means Torres has to be there as 3B for that plan. Andujar plays like Nunez defensively. Very disappointing. Bird HAS TO bounce back to old himself to avoid serious worrisome at 1B.

    • fuster

      no, Refsnyder's Yankee career is about over.

      and Carter is only on the team because Tyler Austin is on the 60 day DL

  • Dan M

    Depending on when Tyler Austin is ready to come back from his will determine how long Carter has left with the team. Sometimes I watch Carter swing the bat and I wonder how he got past Little League, the man has zero pitch recognition what so ever let alone discipline. CC's struggle scare me a bit because the past couple of seasons he's tired out during the summer when the weather is hot, if he's getting knocked around this bad now I don't think I'll want to see him pitch in the summer. Betances definitely needs to work on being a "PITCHER" as opposed to a "THROWER", we all know his Heater is one of the best in the game and that Slurve he throws is beyond filthy. His problem is he loves the strike out and like the article said he tends to get himself in trouble before he gets out of an inning. He needs to think about getting outs period as opposed to striking guys out all the time. Lastly all Greg Bird needs to do when he comes back is think that this is the start of Spring Training all over again, make this a new start to this new season, forget the first month ever happened and carry on from there and he needs to play full time. If Girardi puts full faith in him and says your getting every start against lefties and righties that may give Bird additional confidence. These are just my takes on the Yankees current "Achilles heels".

    • buckeye balls

      agree about carter-can't deviate his swing plane at all-can't believe NL pitchers found his bat 41 times last year.

  • Rob Abruzzese

    I find it silly to criticize Betances for struggling to get through innings while Chapman has struggled just as much with worse results and the other setup man, Tyler Clippard, has had similar issues as well where innings hardly go 1-2-3. What are you, Randy Levine?

    • Dan M

      Rob your are definitely right about both Chapman and Clippard. They have each had struggles this season, Chapman in particular in the 18-inning affair vs the Cubs and the one game in Boston earlier this season where he got the save but it took him around 35-40 pitches to get it. My thing with Betances is simply that I feel like he gets into these jams more often then not. I feel he falls in love with his stuff to much and I'd rather see him just go straight after batters as opposed to trying to make them look bad. An outs an out however you get it striking out everyone isn't important. Basically what I want to see is Betances work smarter not harder. As for the Randy Levine comment, not sure who that was directed at but you should've said "who are you?" not "what are you". Not trying to be a grammar freak or anything, I'm just sayin.

    • Delia Enriquez Post author

      I mentioned Betances’ issues don’t involve his numbers, it’s the walks and the constant need to get out of jams. And regarding Randy Levine, Betances’ Houdini performances isn’t exactly helping his case vs. Randy. He gets the job done, but the Yankees want less effort and less pitches so he can be available the next day.

  • tom

    OTT, Seth Romero is kicked out from the team. What a prick! lol.

    Adam Haseley of UVA looks like an ideal for Yankees' pick. Lefty with solid hitting skill set. Sound like OF Derek Jeter. His stock keeps climbing up.

    Someone I want to see falling to Yankees is 1B Brendan McKay. Doubtful.

    I don't know if it is accurate that MacKenzie Gore's delivery is reminiscent of Dave Righetti. No?

  • Terry

    CC worries me the most. The end may be near for him. I know it's only 4 straight starts but it all reminds me of his struggles two years ago. Will he be able to turn it around? Carter needs volume ABs to get his homers and they won't exist here, enough said there. Bird, as I've said, will be fine. In fact, he's a future AS. Patience pays off here just like Didi and Hicks but with higher results. DBets, I'm not worried at all. He's the best set up man in baseball period, he will regain his form and go on one of his runs of unhittable innings. Chase, I'm not his biggest fan but with the rest of the team performing well, he's okay. The arm seems to come and go, two years ago was really bad too. The bat is what his 3 year avg. suggests. He will come down to earth, he's average at the plate but so far that's ok

  • hotdog

    You can have 4 or 5 achilles heels and still win a world series…but Carter is killing me…

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