The New York Yankees are currently in fourth place in the competitive American League East division with a record of 53-47 as we go to press. A lot of it has to do with the constant injuries the team has been afflicted with all year long. Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeria and Alex Rodriguez are a few of the players on the Yankee roster who are nursing injuries and are on the disabled list. The injuries have been so bad and difficult for Joe Girardi that they have already gone to 5 different third basemen to replace “A-Rod.” How bad are the injuries for the Yanks? The 5 different third basemen have a combined batting average of .250 and only 2 home runs. With the rival Red Sox atop the division and the Orioles starting to heat up as well, the Yankees could find themselves in a world of trouble as they are on the verge of missing the playoffs for only the second time in the last 17 years. The Yankee offense has been horrible only averaging 3.5 runs per game.
Most of the attention has been on the Yankee offense, however their pitching has not been sharp either. Their ace C.C Sabathia has not been the pitcher we are all accustomed to seeing in recent years. Sabathia has been giving up home runs to opposing batters like it’s in style. Phil Hughes has had one of his toughest seasons as a Yankee pitcher with an earn run average of over four, Andy Pettitte has had a tough season so far posting an ERA of over 5 his last 7 starts going 2-4 in those starts which is un-Pettitte like. You have to think where would the Yanks be if it wasn’t for their only ray of sunshine all season, Hiroki Kuroda. Kuroda is 9-6 with a fair ERA of 2.65, which is the lowest for any Yankee starter this season so far. Indeed this has been a tough and busy year for Girardi managing wise, but he still has the team playing over .500 baseball.
With 60-plus games to go, where will the Yankees be at the end of September? It is not too late for the Yankees to catch the Red Sox in the AL East despite all of the nagging injuries the Yankees have been faced with. Granderson, Jeter and maybe even Alex Rodriguez are expected to make their way back adding some well-needed power to the lineup. As good as Boston has been playing, maybe the “Bronx Bombers” should focus on capturing one of the 2 wild card spots which are currently being held by the Rangers and Orioles. Anything can happen in these next couple of months. Girardi and company hopes it ends with a ticket to the playoffs.
Sports Notes: (Football) The New York Jets officially sign rookie quarterback Geno Smith to a 4-year $5 million dollar deal. (Baseball) On Monday night, Major League Baseball suspended Milwaukee Brewers slugger Ryan Braun for the remainder of the season (56 games) for testing positive for a banned substance. He is the first former league MVP to be suspended for performance enhancing drugs. There have been many rumors that Alex Rodriguez may be next inline to face a suspension which could exceed 100 games.