Sunday, November 8, 2015

I Don't Have Time For Excuses

First of all, I want to let you know that I believe alcoholism is a serious malady. Please do not take what I say below as being unsympathetic to CC Sabathia, or anybody else that has had an issue with alcohol.
CC Sabathia recently finished his stint at an alcohol rehabilitation center, and later did interviews where he admitted to drinking heavily during the season. CC pointed out that while he was never drunk while pitching, he would actually schedule his binge drinking sessions around his starts and workouts.

A few days ago new Yankees hitting coach, Alan Cockrell, said that Brett Gardner had wrist issues for much of the season. Brett was actually hit on the wrist by a pitch in April, and due to MLB rules, was only able to get three cortisone injections. The last injection came prior to August 1st, when Gardner's season really took a tumble (.203/.288/.290 in the final two months).

While some Yankees fans might believe the following bits of news means those two players will turn things around next season, I'm not counting on it... and neither should the Yankees. While it's nice to think Sabathia will be an effective starter next season, his ERA of 4.81 over the past three seasons doesn't change my belief that he's no better than a middle of the rotation pitcher. At the same time, Brett Gardner's triple-slash of .258/.335/.410 over the past two years makes me think a move back to the lower end of the batting lineup may be a good thing.

"It's fun down there, Brett!"

The Yankees could not only get a good to great pitcher such as Jeff Samardzija, but they can also sign a great outfielder like Jason Heyward. With that type of talent available, I'm not okay with the Yankees counting on bounce-back seasons from players like Sabathia and Gardner.

If those two turn things around that would be great. CC and Brett deserve the best, whether that be in New York or elsewhere. But the bottom line is the Yankees have to do what's best for them, and entering the 2016 season with Jason Heyward instead of Brett Gardner, or putting somebody like Jeff Samardzija into the starting rotation ahead of or instead of CC Sabathia, may very well be what's best.

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)