Two GMs told me this is the year the Yankees don't make the postseason, one of them going so far as to say they'll finish third, behind Boston and Toronto. I'm not buying it. The Yankees have so much talent it would take a multitude of worst-case scenarios to cut them low: Andy Pettitte breaks down, Johnny Damon, Bobby Abreu, Jason Giambi, Hideki Matsui and, most critically, Jorge Posada all decline significantly because of age, and kid pitchers Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy aren't ready to carry a full season of New York's physical and psychological load. Is all of that going to happen? No.We like his thinking even though we don't agree with it completely. But that's a story for another day.
Boston seems more prone to a fallback, if only because recent world champions seem to be handed a tax bill the following season -- and if it hits Josh Beckett, look out. Toronto is intriguing, but there's a huge difference between 87 wins and the 94 you need to play with the big boys in the East. The Jays are not in that weight class.
Friday, March 28, 2008
He may still be on the Steinbrenner's shit list after his defense of Joe Torre in print, but Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci has picked the Yankees to win the American League's East division.