New York Yankees Baseball Season Preview
New York Yankees Pitchers
The New York Yankees have 3 solid starters at the top rotation with Masahrio Tanaka, Michael Pineda and CC Sabathia leading the staff with their experience. It is a big must for these 3 to perform at a high level if the Yankees have any chance to contend against the mighty Boston Red Sox. Sabathia’s numbers were way down in 2016 and none of the three had sensational years, even though there is alot of potential there. There are alot of right handed pitchers fighting for the other two rotation spots including Luis Severino, Bryan Mitchell, Adam Warren, Luis Cessa, Chad Green. The best bet is for Mitchell and Severino to win the last 2 starting spots with the other three heading to the bullpen. The key set up men in the bullpen are Dellin Betances and Tyler Clippard, both right handed pitchers. Betances had a solid year last year with an era just over 3.00 and had 28 holds in his set up position appearing in 73 games. The veteran Clippard split time with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Yankees and had a solid season with 25 holds and appearing in 69 games. So both are solid in their roles. Of course the big acquisition this past offseason was getting Aroldis Chapman back as their ace reliever. Chapman is one of the most feared relievers in the game and got some valuable playoff experience last year during the Chicago Cubs World Series Championship run. As long as the Yankees starters can put up some good numbers, New York should be solid in the pitching department. But again, the starting rotation is the key.
New York Yankees Batters
There is plenty of excitement in New York with the young nucleus of talent that the Yankees have this year. It’s a very different look than in years past where it was a hardcore veteran team year after year. Rarely did young players crack the starting line up. But this year is extremely different. The biggest enthusiasm is with youngstar catcher Gary Sanchez. Sanchez played in only 53 games last year but cranked out an amazing 20 home runs in the short period of time he played. It will be interesting to see how he handles the veteran pitching staff and if the sophomore jinx catches up to him with American League pitching finally figuring him out. Starting at first base is 24 year old Greg Bird. Bird has played in only a handful of Major League games, but does have some pop in his bat. At second base Startlin Castro is back again. Coming off of a very nice season in which he hit 21 home runs and a .270 batting average. The one knock on Castro however is his low on base percentage in which he only walked 24 times all of last year so he will need to work on that a bit in 2017. Ronald Torreyes will start the season at shortstop until fulltime starter Didi Gregorius comes back from his injury. The injury should only keep Gregorius out for probably just April. Didi had an impressive year knocking out 20 homers and knocking in 70 runs. Veteran Chase Headley will anchor the hot corner in 2017. His experience should help the younger guys around him in the field. The outfield will again have Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury roaming the field while young Aaron Judge will be out in right field. Gardner and Ellsbury give the Yankees the very much needed speed at the top of the line up and cause havoc on the basepaths for opposing pitchers. The young 24 year old Judge will need to learn things fast with 4th outfielder Aaron Hicks waiting for his chance to hopefully crack the lineup. Hitting cleanup will be DH Matt Holliday. At age 37, Holliday will need a good solid year to bolster the Yankees young lineup.