Yankees’ Editorial: The Bronx is Boiling


It was certainly a rough week for the New York Yankees. Despite suffering through their worst week of the season, getting shellacked twice by the defending American League Champions, the Yankees ares till in first place by a game. So it could in fact be worse.

Pitching still seems to be the problem, as Chase Whitely hit the disabled list and Chris Capuano’s return didn’t go anywhere near as planned. What do the Yankees do about the pitching staff? The Bronx is boiling and I need to blow some steam.


Were it not for CC Sabathia, the Yankees would have been winless this past week. Sabathia has finally ended his 5-game losing streak and has reeled off two wins in a row behind pretty impressive performances. It would be huge if the soon-to-be 35-year old lefty has turned the corner and can serve as the top of the rotation stopper the Yankees had in Andy Pettitte, but Yankees’ fans can’t jump the gun too early. Sabathia is still a huge question mark. 

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Until Masahiro Tanaka returns (and let’s face reality, don’t we all just want him to get the dreaded Tommy John surgery and be done with it already?), the rest of the rotation is Michael Pineda and inconsistency at best.

I wrote last week about how Adam Warren is a decent back-end rotation guy, but he needs to be more consistent after his first trip through opposing lineups. Nathan Eovaldi has two good performances sandwiched between two stinkers, and that seem to be his repertoire.

Chris Capuano was supposed to help the rotation when he returned. I never understood how. This guy hasn’t had a decent season since 2012 and hasn’t had a good season since 2005. His returned from the DL showed exactly what he is: a highly hittable, run allowing pitcher. I didn’t understand why they re-signed him, and I don’t understand why they didn’t release him after he was injured.

So, where do the Yankees turn? Luis Severino is coming off of the 7-day DL, so Yankees’ fans can put their dreams of his big Major League debut on hold. Triple-A has some fill in type of pitchers, but right now, no one looks steady enough to enter the rotation.

Kyle Davies, who has the most big league experience, is struggling with the RailRiders, so I have little confidence that he can be of any help at the big league level. Bryan Mitchell, who came up last season, has also struggled. My dark horse, Jaron Long, has quietly strung together two consecutive good starts to even his record at .500. The 23-year old righty is whom I would really like to see become the fifth starter, but he needs to show he has regained last season’s breakout form before being called up to the Show.

Miguel Sulbaran and Brady Lail are two names to keep an eye on. The two quality starters that started in the Trenton Thunder rotation not named Severino may have to be quickly put on the fast track to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Sulbaran already looked sharp in his Triple-A debut, now it is Lail’s turn. Neither will blow you away with their stuff, but it may be time to get them to a higher level and prep them for big league baseball.

With so little in the arms department on the Minor League level, especially with Severino on the shelf and Ian Clarkin still a ways away, is a trade in the Yankees’ future? Last season, Brian Cashman was able to salvage the season with Brandon McCarthy, is there someone out there on the trash heap that he can find on the cheap again? 

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Everyone knows that Cole Hamels and Johnny Cueto can be had for the right price, but I don’t think now is the time for the Yankees to mortgage the farm. They have worked hard to once again have some quality prospects, and Cueto and Hamels would certainly cost Greg Bird, Aaron Judge, Rob Refsnyder or Severino… if not all of them.

There are plenty of players in the Yankees’ Minor League system that have trade value that can get some lesser arms to New York. Gary Sanchez for example is still a highly talented youngster, but may simply need a change of scenery.

There are plenty of teams right now tinkering with the idea of a 6-man rotation because of the depth of starting pitching they have. Maybe now is the time for the Yankees to help them make their decision by swooping in and trading for a quality arm to mix up the struggling rotation.