Blog Entry

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

Posted on: October 7, 2011 2:15 am
Edited on: October 7, 2011 12:59 pm
By Matt Snyder

Another season gone, another disappointment for 29 teams as one is immortalized forever. Let’s take a look back at 2011 and forward in Eye on Baseball’s R.I.P. series...

Team name: New York Yankees
Record: 97-65, 1st place in AL East. Lost ALDS 3-2 to Detroit.
Manager: Joe Girardi
Best hitter: Curtis Granderson -- .262/.364/.552, 41 HR, 119 RBI, 136 R, 10 3B, 25 SB
Best pitcher: CC Sabathia -- 19-8, 3.00 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 230 K in 237 1/3 IP


It was a pretty normal regular season for the Yankees, as they brought home their 12th AL East title in the past 16 seasons, but it wasn't drawn up the same way as other successful seasons. The pitching rotation from Day 1 was patchwork. Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon and a host of others -- such as Mark Prior -- were brought in during spring training to see if any would stick and it worked out to varying degrees with Garcia, Colon and rookie Ivan Nova. The offense was once-again mighty, as Curtis Granderson emerged as an MVP candidate to pick up the slack for the injured and struggling Alex Rodriguez. Still, in the end, this season will be viewed as a failure since the Yankees didn't win the World Series. If they don't win the World Series, they fell short of expectations. More than 20 other teams would have been ultimately satisfied by this campaign, but not the Yankees. Losing in the ALDS is a failure. Period.

2012 AUDIT

The Yankees are in a familiar spot. They're set up to contend for a World Series title again in 2012, but they are going to have to fill some holes -- namely that they need another reliable starting pitcher. Eyes can look forward and see they need to get younger pretty soon, but with several contracts locked in, the Yankees don't have much choice for 2012. And there is no reason to expect the Yankees to be anywhere but right in the playoff mix come September of 2012. It would be foolish to think otherwise.


Robinson Cano, 2B (club option)
Eric Chavez, 3B
Nick Swisher, RF (club option)
Jorge Posada, DH
Bartolo Colon, SP
Freddy Garcia, SP
CC Sabathia, SP (can and probably will opt out)
Luis Ayala, RP


They will most certainly bring back Sabathia and Cano. From there ...
  • The rotation will have Sabathia, Nova, Hughes and probably A.J. Burnett. He makes too much money to not plug in there. He has the ability to be a decent fifth starter. Still, that rotation appears pretty top-heavy for a team that expects to be the best in the majors. So they need a legitimate second starter behind Sabathia. And he's sitting right there, if interested. C.J. Wilson of the Rangers is left-handed, which fits well in Yankee Stadium, and is a free agent. With the Posada money coming off the books, in addition to the Colon/Garcia money, the Yankees can likely outbid anyone else for Wilson's services. They could even backload a deal if need be, because people like Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter have expiring contracts in the next several years.
  • As I alluded to above, it's time to part ways with Posada and let Jesus Montero take over as the full-time DH. The youngster showed he has the ability to become a serious threat in the lineup and the Yankees need to inject some youth into the aging lineup. 
  • Pitching prospects Manny Banuelos and Dellin Betances don't appear to be ready yet, but they're close. They will be monitored pretty heavily heading into 2012 and if Hughes or Burnett aren't getting it done, it's possible there's a change made. Nova is proof the Yankees aren't afraid to throw someone in the fire.
  • Swisher's situation in right is interesting. Is he worth eight figures? Probably not, according to most teams. But the Yankees can afford that and there aren't many better options out there. What if the Twins don't come to terms on a contract extension with Michael Cuddyer, though? It wouldn't hurt for the Yankees to weigh their options, but the best guess is Swisher comes back. 
  • Really, there isn't that much more that needs to be done. Russell Martin, Mark Teixiera, Cano, Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Brett Gardner and Curtis Granderson will again be everyday starters. The rotation has four men set and the back-end of the bullpen has a returning Joba Chamberlain along with Rafael Soriano, David Robertson and Mariano Rivera. The biggest issue is getting one more starting pitcher and then filling the bench with also-rans like the Yankees did this year with Andruw Jones, Eric Chavez et al. Considering they were close, but not good enough, I fully expect the Yankees to throw the bank at Wilson and that will be the only significant offseason move concerning a player outside the organization. The only caveat to that is the Yankees will have to agree with Sabathia first -- and I do believe the Yankees will do whatever it takes to keep him -- which means they could miss out on Wilson in the meantime. If they do miss out, the leftovers aren't awesome. Edwin Jackson, Erik Bedard and Joel Pineiro look like the best bets. If they wanted to trade, they're probably looking at the likes of Wandy Rodriguez or Jeff Niemann (I don't think the Rays would part with James Shields cheaply), so expect the Yankees to be very agressive with both Sabathia and then Wilson.
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 4, 2012 11:59 am

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 17, 2011 8:01 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 7, 2011 11:25 am

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

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Since: Oct 7, 2011
Posted on: October 19, 2011 10:32 pm

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

I really hope Russell doens't get booted off the evidently present considerably also early...utterly retains the exhibit ent ertianing

Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: October 15, 2011 9:48 am

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

Don't worry BoSox fans, there's good news for you here.

Tito, the second best manager (behind Scioscia) in the AL is gone. Who knew that he was an Oxycodone junkie? But hey, that's not the same thing as Manny and Papi taking the juice, is it? They and A-Roid can all start planning for their return for Old Timers' Day.

Good news is that a new nutrionist will ban The Colonel from the clubhouse and bring in grilled tofu snacks and O'Doul's.

Second good thing is that Theo will be gone. Why is that a good thing? Because in addition to being a Cashman wannabe, he's Larry Lucchino's air cover. Once Theo is gone, Lucchino will be exposed for the fraud he is and John Henry will summon up his "inner Steinbrenner" and get rid of him. If you're lucky, he can lure Zim back to town.

Let's see what else?

Carl Crawford. What else is there to say?
Tek. Done.
J.D. Drew. I'd say "overdone" but there was never enough of him here to be done. 
Saltalamacchia. Trade him while you can.
Youk. Broken. Unfortunately.
Papi. Day to day every day. 
Scutaro. One good year with every team before he gets dumped.

On the other hand, the Yankees just have to find one starter - either CJ Wilson via free agency or one of the kids will show like Nova in Spring Triaining. 

Going to be a much better hot stove season in Boston than in New York - I'll give you that.

Since: May 15, 2011
Posted on: October 12, 2011 12:47 pm

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

They're golfing now, or on cruises, or sitting on the beach...and we are thinking about how disappointing it was.

Whatever they did in 2011, it wasn't good enough.  Maybe for Kansas City or Baltimore but not for the New York Yankees.  If the scenario is replayed again in 2012 should we celebrate another regular season Division championship?  Hold a parade?

Until the Yankees cut their payroll in half, nothing short of a World Series Championship will be satisfactory.  

With a payroll of $100,000,000, we can be happy with just making the playoffs.  Sure, I can live with that.  It was a great year.  Give a bunch of 25 year old, minimum wage players a shot, and I'll enjoy it.  The stadium won't be filled, but that's ok.  

However, with what New York spends, and the amount of press we get about "level playing fields" and salary caps, you have to win.  New York expects nothing less. 

If it doesn't happen, Cashman and Girardi are the ones whose heads will roll, first.  

Since: Sep 1, 2011
Posted on: October 12, 2011 10:13 am

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

They were in it till the bottom of the ninth. come on man.

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 2:28 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: May 15, 2011
Posted on: October 11, 2011 10:54 am

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

Matt Snyder writes: Really, there isn't that much more that needs to be done. , Mark Teixiera, Cano, Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, and Curtis Granderson will again be everyday starters.”


That’s a scary thought Mr. Snyder.  2011 was as disappointing as any season that I can remember, even when the Yanks blew the 3-0 ALCS lead to the Red Sox.  The weaknesses were glaring and the end result was predictable.  Rob Dibble on MLB radio spoke to one issue prior to the end of the regular season, and I paraphrase.  He said you can’t have a half dozen guys going up to the plate trying to hit the ball out of the yard every at bat, and then come playoff time, have them become situational hitters, moving runners, playing a the kind of game that championship teams must.

 Does anyone really see a different result in 2012?  With no role players and only multi-million dollar superstars, I don't.

 "We are the Yankees,” New York President Randy Levine told ESPN a few days ago. "That is the way The Boss set it up. When you don't win the , it is a bitter disappointment and not a successful year."  When assessing the totality of another Yankee season I can’t help considering Levine’s words.   Having heard Captain Derek Jeter speak this same ideology many times. I’m not sure that they ring true for everyone.   

 How many current Yankees truly have the same bitter taste in their mouth that Levine and Jeter speak of.   How many feel as poorly as the everyday fan does?   Can this current crop of Bronx Bombers honestly claim that their underachieving will motivate them during intense winter workout?  Stay with them through the winter meetings right up until pitchers and catchers report?  If body language, the ability to adjust, and clutch performance are a measuring stick, I don’t think many care as much as we do. 

 Let’s look at the 4, 5, and 6 hitters for the Bombers during their recent disappointment vs. Detroit.

 In today’s reality with multi-million dollar ball players and guaranteed contracts is it conceivable that Mark Teixeira really cares what a bust he’s been.  Now I suppose some fans will go out and buy his jersey and scream his name on opening day when he comes to the plate, but I really wonder why. 

With a glance, Tex’s three year regular season averages with the Yankees of 156 games, BA .266, 37 HRs, and 113 rbi’s, are respectable—Bronx Bomber type numbers.   Whether or not they are worth the $41, 250,000 that the organization paid him over that time is a topic for further discussion. 

Now let’s look back at his post-season numbers with the Yankees.  27 games, .170 BA, 3 HRs, 12 rbi, and 25 Ks.  NY has him signed through 2016.  Worth the money for 5 more years on his 8yr/$180 million dollar contract?

Alex Rodriguez is another scary thought for Yankee fans. He is signed thru 2017 on a 10-yr/$275M contract. A-Rod appears done.  Can he coach 1st base?  A look at his post-season stats during his years in NY will show 59 games covering 7 seasons, .260 BA, 10 HRs, 33 RBIs, 47 Ks—serviceable numbers, right.   On closer inspection you will find that if you remove stats from 2004 and 2009, you get a more disturbing picture of the man’s clutch-ability.  33 games, .170 BA, 1 HR, 7 RBI, and 27 Ks.

Let’s look at Nick Swisher and his 3 year 28 game, post-season Yankee history.  .160 BA, 4 HRs, 5 RBIs, and a strike out per game.  Contract done at the end of 2011.  Will he be back in right field?

The Yanks will have Montero at DH to replace Posada, a proud Yankee who will hopefully retire rather than take his game anywhere else.  He can leave now with his head up.  Many of media and fans laughingly called for his retirement months ago.  It’s funny how I wish Jorge was at bat a few times during the brief postseason instead of A-Rod, Martin, or Teixeira.

Finally, we have gentleman Joe at the helm.  It will take me until April to get over the fact that, Joe couldn't find a spot to use Nunez in game #5.

Unfortunately, I see business as usual in 2012.  



Since: Jan 18, 2011
Posted on: October 10, 2011 5:26 pm

R.I.P.: 2011 New York Yankees

OMG who cares???  Why aren't you stiffs writing articles about the teams that didn't lose???  Save this stupid Yankee drama for the off-season.

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