Thoughts About the Yankees

YankeeslogoThe pain of the Yankees quick elimination from the playoffs is fading. As a fan, I actually thought the Yankees had a shot at making the World Series given that I don’t think any AL team is that overwhelmingly good. But the Yankees were flawed and were eliminated quickly. My overinflated hopes aside, that wasn’t a real surprise to many, nor to me.

Actually the Yankees performed about how I had hoped/predicted in 2015. They surely got better performances than they might have expected from veterans Teixeira, A Rod and Beltran. They can’t expect comparable performance in 2016. Not gonna happen. On the other hand Ellsbury, who had a great start before he was injured, was woeful, Gardner faded, and their parade of second basemen were the weakest in the league. Hope to get more performance here in 2016.

The starting pitching was a combination of injured pitchers, with none escaping injury (except Warren who was shifted back to the pen mid season). Injuries are to be expected but you need to be more consistent that that to be successful. The back end of the bullpen was very strong, but that’s not enough if you don’t have a lead going into the 7th inning.

All in all……It was better to have post-season baseball back in the Bronx, however briefly.

But where do the Yankees go from here?

The Yankees are clearly a team in transition. They do have under-30 talent from trades, signings, and their farm system–pitchers Tanaka, Eovaldi, Pineda, Warren, Betances—and position players Gregorius, Refsynder, and Murphy. And now 2 terrific rookies—pitcher, Luis Severino and first baseman, Greg Bird. Both of them made big contributions in the last 2 months.

On the other hand, the Yankees have lots of age too. Within 2 years the Yankees will shed big contracts—A Rod, CC, Tex, Beltran—that’s $85 Million of payroll annually. And there will be the next aging tier—Gardner, Ellsbury, MCann–who will be in their mid 30s in 2-3 years. Each of these 3 showed some age with weaker second half performances.

How will the Yankees proceed in the short term? I am not their GM, but their needs are obvious:

1. A stud frontline starter
2. A right handed thumper
3. A second baseman
4. Stronger middle innings relievers

Will the farm system provide some/all of these needs? Maybe some. Severino could be an ace, but they Yankees need another. Judge might be a terrific player in 2016 (or more likely 2017). Mateo could be a great second baseman—that too is probably two years away.

So the Yankees will need to continue to depend on youth and some selected free agent signings in 2016, and more significant ones in 2017 and 2018 when they shed lots of salaries. Will the Yankees contend as they evolve? Maybe, but they might take a step backward. Will they enter the Dark Ages, also known as the CBS era of the late 60s? I don’t think so and sure hope not. I hope they can continue to have a winning record, and contend as they evolve.

But it may be a few more years before the Yankees can realistically have a good chance to raise the 28th Championship banner. Even we spoiled Yankees fans know that winning the World Series is not a Yankees birthright.

I just love the feeling of my team becoming a Champion. Wish it were this year.

More Strumings


  1. …Some of us STILL have the feeling that our team can be World Champions, Lonny!

    Honestly, the Yankees’ fate was sealed when the Jays went out and got Tulo and Price, and the Yanks basically decided to play the hand they were dealt.

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