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Top Ten Tuesdays (on Time for Once): Do It!
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Whew! It's been many moons since I last posted a Top Ten Tuesday on the proper day (or at all), but for once I am here, coming atcha with some sweet Top Ten action.

The season is quickly getting closer to the finish line - the Yanks will play their 100th game tonight - and they're still rotting in the third place hole in the division. They've got a 4.5 game deficit to surmount and not much time to do it; they're going to need to really get things together to blaze ahead of the Rays and Sox. The problem? They've got a lot of holes in the roster at this time and often seem to be hanging on by a thread. I've got a few thoughts on what they'll need to do during these last few months in order to make it to the playoffs... ready?

Top Ten Things the Yanks NEED if They Want to Make it Back to the Playoffs:

10) Jeter needs to get his average and OBP up. He's hitting well, but not as well as he usually does. Perhaps I'm being a bit greedy expecting him to hit over .300 again, but it sure would be a help.
9) They've still got 9 games to go against the Sox, and big wins would not only boost their spot in the standings (obv) but provide a hearty dose of confidence and momentum - beating the Sox always does.
8) They've also got 6 more games to play against those devilish Rays, and those are going to be must-win contests.
7) The offense needs to produce big time when the "filler starters" - Sir Sidney and Rasner - take the mound. Both of them are decent pitchers and can certainly keep the team in the game so long as the bats show up. Each of them is likely to give up at least 3 runs in the 6 innings they last each time they pitch, which puts a little extra pressure on the offense.
6) Keep hitting, Cano!
5) The bottom third of the order is currently pretty weak, with Melky, Gardner and Jo-Mo (see #3), and that's a pretty big issue at the moment. Everyone seems to think Gardner has the potential to hit a lot better than he has been (.170/.237/189) and Melky has shown glimmers of what he's capable of, but methinks it's unlikely those three will be even close to as productive as the top 6 in the lineup. If they can just get their collective average up to even .250 it would be a big improvement. The team can't win consistently with three automatic outs at the bottom of the lineup.
4) The bullpen has been surprisingly incredible - lights out, in fact - of late, and while I doubt they can keep their ERA under 2.00 for long, if they can just stay healthy and pitch at a 3.00 clip, the Yanks should be able to provide enough run support to hang onto their leads (or mount a comeback when they're behind).
3) Jo-Mo is going to need to start hitting. He's awesome behind the plate, throwing out potential steelers at nearly a 50% rate, but a .227 batting average and .266 OBP ain't going to cut it. If he could just get his average up to how Posada was hitting, about .265 or so, he'd actually be an upgrade over the injured Jorgie. Seems unlikely, though. Let's cross our fingers for .240.
2) Can Matsui make it back from the DL? He opted not to have the surgery his docs were advising, which doesn't seem like the best idea - the docs are the pros - but he knows his body and hopefully he can rehab successfully.
1) When Hughsie and/or I-Ken finally claw their way back to the majors, we need a few wins from them. Before they took up residence at the DL Resort and Casino they hadn't managed a single win - that's got to change. They are the ultimate "Get it TOGETHER!" boys.

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posted by Yankees Chick @ Tuesday, July 22, 2008  
  • At 5:53 PM, Blogger Christopher said…

    dont forget about.... dare i say.... pavano. he has just started to rehab. so he may see a mound sometime in the near future.

  • At 6:39 PM, Blogger Phil said…

    You will NEVER see Pavano pitch for the Yankees again. NEVER.

  • At 9:02 AM, Blogger Jason said…

    I like your points Maureen, and the bullpen has been a huge strength this season. It's been excellent for most of the year but not quite to this degree--Edwar and Nuke LaFarnsworth nearly unhittable the last couple weeks. I also like that the bullpen has gotten both better and younger. Robertson has been outstanding, Giese has been a good long man, and Veras is tossing heavy gas with a nasty curve. It's impossible to over-estimate how vital to the Yanks' chances Cano is. His hot streak (12-23 since the break, average up 17 points) has been like acquiring another bat and, with Jorge and Matsui likely out for the year, he needs to solidify the bottom half of the lineup. If Jeter and Melky can pick it up as well, look out.

    I'm also not opposed to the Yanks acquiring another starter, but hope it isn't Washburn. Gritty lefty, good against lefties, and better of late, but the guy's best years are very likely behind him, and he's way too expensive for my tastes for mediocrity. 22-38 in the last 2 1/2 seasons for about $10 million/season doesn't cut it. He's earning Mussina-like money for results not close to Mussina's (which are admittedly better than I expected).

  • At 10:57 AM, Blogger YankeeFiend23 said…

    Depending on what moves Cashman makes in the next 8 days a lot of this seasons fortunes could come down to how the youth progress. Gardner could be the pesky lil' speedster the Yanks need if he can get comfortable with the pitching in the bigs. Hughes will be a great. No worries there. I really really hope Moose gets the run support and backing from the bull pen to finally cross into the land of the 20 game winner. Moose winding up with 20+ wins would mean good things for the Yanks.

  • At 11:50 AM, Blogger YankeeFiend23 said…

    6 solid from Moose and a couple insurance runs from Arod and it looks like #13 is in the bag. Whats the record now, 35-1 when leading after 6 (counting this one).

    Not to mention, another 2 hit day for Cano...so far...

    I like the timing of this latest run. It leaves room for the cool off so they can get hot again heading into the play offs

  • At 4:56 AM, Blogger YankeeFiend23 said…

    Like the fun fact o' the day, that is one sick lil' stat. That is one guaranteed never to be broken.

  • At 6:25 PM, Blogger Maryland Orioles' Fan said…

    YC --



    All-Star Game photos...

    -The Oriole Post

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