Can the Yankees avoid the missteps of the Red Sox and Mariners?
Yeah, Yeah, ALCS and All That
Readers here are more familiar with the Bronx Bombers’ story, so a summary is all that is required.
New York began its vision quest in 2013 when they got three of the first 33 picks. One of those turned out to be Aaron Judge, a compensation pick for the loss of former RF Nick Swisher. Over the next three years, the Yankees continued to make decisions based on building a homegrown team.
Now, upon completion of the 2017 season, the Yankees are ready for a run of their own. They can see a diamond-ringed with homegrown players, some of whom look like shining stars.
25-year old RF Aaron Judge won ROY, the Home Run Derby, and became the face of the game. RHP Luis Severino, only 23, came in third in the CY Young voting, and C Gary Sanchez is off to a historic offensive start; Yo Soy Gary will play next year at age 25.
Soon to be 28, Didi Gregorius slashed .287/.318/.478 with 25 home runs last year and was third in FP among AL shortstops.
And to an offense that led the AL in home runs (241), GM Brian Cashman added 28-year old Giancarlo Stanton and his 59 HRs and NL MVP abilities. When a team takes on a contract like Stanton’s, they are signaling the beginning of a serious run.
Like Seattle and Boston before them, New York can also see plenty of reason for optimism in their 2018 starters.
Along with Sevvy is LHP Jordan Montgomery, 24, who posted a 3.88; Sonny Gray, 27 and a rightie, 3.72; and fellow RHP, Masahiro Tanaka, 28, 4.74. It should be noted of Tanaka that 2017 was his worst professional campaign and that he carries an MLB career 3.56 ERA.
Rounding out the rotation is their other leftie, CC Sabathia. While he will be 37 next year, he posted a far more than respectable 3.69, the third year in a row his ERA has come down. Plus, CC is only signed to a one year deal, so his impact is only meant to be for 2018.
Right now, the Yankees have to be optimistic. They still have a great farm system, including the number two prospect overall in 2B Gleyber Torres, all of 21. Aaron Boone and the boys are confident he will take one of the two vacancies in the infield.
The other spot can be filled by a variety of methods, another reason for optimism. Most in the organization think 22-year old 3B Miguel Andujar has the combination of offense and defense, even if he might not start the season ready for the show.
But because they are still below the salary cap, and have that farm system, the Yankees can acquire a competent placeholder, or even replacement, if need be.