Spring has arrived, meaning one thing for baseball fans: Baseball season is just around the corner. As the season comes closer, a striking revelation has been revealed. For the first time in decades, the New York Yankees, the most celebrated franchise in baseball, are in deep trouble.
This past offseason has been one to forget for Yankee fans, filled with lost talent and an injured roster. For starters, captain Derek Jeter will start the year on the disabled list after fracturing his ankle in last year’s playoffs. Jeter, now 38 years old, is still struggling with running and planting his foot when batting, according to reports by ESPN. Originally Jeter hoped to be in the starting lineup on Opening Day, but setbacks have prevented the five-time Gold Glove winner from taking the field.
“They should absolutely be panicking,” junior Riciard Ramdeen said. “Everyone is hurt and there are no prospects. Not to mention they are now trying to be under the salary cap. It is going to be a long season.”
Other losses suffered by the aging Bombers include first baseman Mark Teixeira and center fielder Curtis Granderson. Teixeira, one of the team’s biggest sources of power hitting, has an injured wrist that will require surgery, and he will be out until at least May with a possibility that he will be shut down until next season. Granderson, a base-stealer and another big homerun hitter, fractured his forearm after getting hit by a pitch in spring training. Granderson will be recovering for at least the next month.
Then there is the new chapter in the Alex Rodriguez saga. Rodriguez has been accused, yet again, of buying and taking performance-enhancing drugs. Now an injured hip has required surgery and guarantees that he will be sidelined until at least the All-Star break. Rodriguez, no longer near where he once was, may very well need to look for a new place to play as many analysts have indicated a possibility of the slugger’s contract being voided if steroid allegations prove true.
That leaves four starters injured for the Bronx Bombers, three of whom are the core of their infield. Another underlying problem is their roster’s lack of depth in the pros and the farm system. The Yankees lost outfielder Nick Swisher to the Cleveland Indians and are scrambling to put together a makeshift lineup for Opening Day against the Boston Red Sox.
The Yankees have recently picked up Angels outfielder Vernon Wells, an aging former All-Star. Wells, once a Yankee killer during his days in Toronto, has found his production dwindling. Wells, who has a career .273 batting average, hit .230 in 2012.
In total, the Yankees have lost four hitters who have hit 40-plus home runs in a season and multiple Gold Glovers as well. However, Yankee fans are more worried about the loss of their captain.
“Jeter is the biggest loss to the team,” said avid Yankees fan and junior Melissa Jones. “He is the only guy who is all-around on that team. Plus he has the winning experience.” When asked what she expects when going to the game on Opening Day, Jones hesitated and said, “I’m scared.”
April 1 will mark the first game of the season against their arch-rival, the also struggling Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. With the state of the Yankees, it is safe to say that the other 29 teams in the league are more than happy to see one of the more dominant teams in danger of falling into the cellar.