New York Yankees: The 2010s in review (2010-2014)
By Ryan Touhey
Record: 95-67, 2nd in the AL East
Key Acquisitions: Curtis Granderson, Nick Johnson, Javier Vazquez, Boone Logan, Randy Winn, Lance Berkman
Key Departures: Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon, Melky Cabrera, Jerry Hairston Jr.
Coming off their 27th world championship, the Yankees began the 2010s with high expectations. Most of the 2009 team remained intact, although there would be no more Hideki Matsui, who had been with the team since 2003 and was the World Series MVP. There would also be no Johnny Damon or Melky Cabrera either.
Damon signed with the Tigers as a free agent, and the Yankees made the puzzling decision to send Cabrera to Atlanta, to receive reliever Boone Logan and starter Javier Vazquez, who struggled with the Yankees back in 2004. They did, however, get All-Star outfielder Curtis Granderson from Detroit, who was their biggest offseason acquisition.
The team got off to a fast start and had the best record in the Majors at the All-Star break. They would be hit with tragedy though during the break, as legendary public address announcer Bob Sheppard, and principal owner George Steinbrenner passed away within the course of three days. The Yankees would sit atop the division for a majority of the season but could never get the Tampa Bay Rays off of their back.
A notable moment of the season occurred in August when Alex Rodriguez hit his 600th career home run against Toronto. The Yankees stumbled to the finish line, losing eight of their final 11 games and settling for the wild card. In order for the Yankees to repeat as world champions, they’d have to get through a familiar foe in Minnesota in the Division Series, which they did handily, winning in a three-game sweep. However, they were overpowered by the Texas Rangers in the Championship Series, as they were outscored 38-19 in the six-game series.
Analysis: 2010 was a weird and heartbreaking year for the Yankees. They had all of the resources in hand to repeat as world champions but made a couple of nonsensical offseason moves by bringing in random guys like Randy Winn, Chan Ho Park, and Nick Johnson. Javier Vazquez Part II was just as bad as Part I, as the right-hander just couldn’t get it together in New York, pitching to a 5.32 ERA.
On the upside, second baseman Robinson Cano had a terrific season, hitting .319, with 29 home runs and 109 runs batted in. Outfielder Nick Swisher made his first and only All-Star team and had a great season hitting .288, with 29 home runs and 89 runs batted in. Starter C.C. Sabathia went on to win 21 games as well and finished third in CY Young voting.
On the downside, shortstop Derek Jeter had one of his worst offensive seasons, as he hit just .270, with 10 homers and 67 runs batted in. Overall, it was a year of underachieving for the team with too many guys who just didn’t fit on the roster.