There were some bright spots for the Yankees in 2013. After missing the 2012 ALCS, Derek Jeter was back in the starting lineup. Brett Gardner was the leadoff batter. However, injuries caused the lineup to morph into a patchwork of different players. In addition, Jayson Nix began the season at third. Although Jeter was a bright spot, his return was marred with a quadriceps strain that kept him out the rest of the season.
The Yankees were also interested in two starting pitchers and two relief pitchers as well as a player for the infield. They are interested in Masahiro Tanaka and Scott Kazmir, both of whom were excellent in Japan last year. But, for the 2013 season, the Yankees should focus on getting healthy and replacing departing stars. C.C. Jeter and Derek Jeter are expected to be back in serviceability this season. Sabathia needs to retool his pitching in order to be more effective in major leagues.
The Yankees’ pitching staff was the team’s strength for most of the season, as they had an ERA+ of 103. Despite their struggles, they were still in the playoff picture throughout the season. Hiroki Kuroda, a Cy Young candidate at season’s end, was C.C. Sabathia led the Yankees in wins. Hiroki Kuroda led all starters in ERA, and Ivan Nova pitched well during the second half. Andy Pettitte ended his career in Houston with a shutout, becoming the last Yankee pitcher to complete a season without losing one game.
The Yankees were able take a few top picks in the 2013 draft. This included Nick Rumbelow who was used to acquire JP Sears from the Mariners and Juan Then from them. Likewise, in 2010, the Yankees traded Tyler Webb, who netted them Garrett Cooper. The Yankees also drafted three top picks in other drafts, but none of these players is currently with the team.
The Yankees’ biggest problems in 2013 were still talent and injuries. Without these two pieces, the team wasn’t even sustainable in the American League East race, let alone the Wild Card. The Yankees were also middle of the pack in pitching and offense, and even suffered several injuries. They won only a few games despite Vernon Wells and Kevin Youkilis. They may not be able maintain the pace in the AL East.
The Yankees lost one of their three games against the Red Sox in May after being swept by the New York Mets. However, they did lose two of the three games they played against the Red Sox. As a result, the Yankees finished the month with 11 wins and 16 losses. Their last losing month came in September 2010, which was only slightly worse. It’s difficult to predict what 2013 holds for the Yankees.