This is what I see, today, when I look at the 2011 Yankees starting rotation, line-up, and bullpen:
CC Sabathia – an ace, a stud, on a path to Cooperstown. But, overweight and coming off knee surgery, albeit minor.
A.J. Burnett – ERA over 5 last season. Immature. At his best, he’s averaging seasons of 13-12 with an ERA of four.
Phil Hughes – An ERA of 5.15 over his last 20 games in 2010. (18 of 20 games were starts.)
Sergio Mitre – Lifetime ERA of 5.27.
Ivan Nova – Rookie. Has 42 big league innings under his belt.
Freddy Garcia – ERA over his last 5 big league seasons is 4.69.
Bartolo Colon – Didn’t pitch in majors last season. ERA from 2004 through 2009 was 4.58.
Russell Martin – An OPS of .680 over the last two seasons.
Mark Teixeira – Coming off his worst season (in 2010) since 2006. Still a good player.
Robinson Cano – 60 point drop in his OPS between 1st and 2nd half in 2010. Still a good player.
Derek Jeter – Had the worst season of his career in 2010. Will be 37-years old in 2011.
Alex Rodriguez – Coming off his worst season (in 2010) since 1999. Signs of rapid, early, decline.
Brett Gardner – Batted .232 with .330 SLG in the 2nd half of 2010 – was injured and required off-season surgery.
Curtis Granderson – An OBA of .333 with 257 strikeouts over the last two seasons.
Nick Swisher – Solid offensive performer last two seasons. Major case of red-light fever.
Jorge Posada – Doesn’t want to DH and will be 39-years old in 2011.
Mo Rivera – The best ever – but will be 41-years old in 2011.
Rafael Soriano – If healthy, should make a positive contribution. Still, a bit of a headcase – so, you never know.
Pedro Feliciano – If healthy, should make a positive contribution. Probably won’t be likeable because he’s a hotdog.
Joba Chamberlain – The poster child for the mistake of letting a young pitcher get a big head too soon.
Boone Logan – Pleasant surprise in 2010. Career record says it was a fluke.
David Robertson – Walk rate is still too high, almost 5 per 9 IP in 2010, and has shown no signs of going down. Also seems like an injury waiting to happen.
How this team is suppose to keep pace with the Boston Red Sox in 2011 is beyond me. And, there’s a chance that the Rays, O’s and Blue Jays may give them a run for their money too.