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Top 5 Reasons Why the Yankees Will Win the Division
by Tony Aubry, BaseballEvolution.com
August 17, 2006


Tony Aubry

5. Red Sox Injuries

 

New York has been be plagued with injuries all year, but they have been able to overcome them. The Red Sox, on the other hand, have not been able to do so.On July 30th they lost Nixon, and the next night they lost Varitek. Nixon was having a bounce back year. He had an OBP of .396 and 52 runs scored in only 300 AB. Cap Varitek was having a down year, but itís still better than whatever Mirabelli will do and he was clearly the leader of that group. Since then, the Sox are 6-9 and have lost 3.5 games in the standings.

 

 

4. Trades

 

On the day before the deadline, the Yankees acquired Abreu and Lidle for a few minor leaguers and a wad of cash. The next day they acquired Craig Wilson for the Garbage Man. Since then, Wilson and Abreu have combined to go .301/.397/.505, and Lidle is 1-1 with an ERA of 3.60. The Sox did absolutely nothing. Their pitching staff has been in shambles all year and they were unable to improve it. They talked about getting Roy Oswalt and talked about getting Andruw Jones, but they couldnít do either. While the Yankees were out improving their team, the Sox sat on their hands.

 

 

3. Red Sox Rotation

 

The Red Sox biggest pickup in the off-season has done nothing but stink. Donít be fooled by his 13 wins, because he sports a 5.02 ERA to go along with it. He has allowed a mind boggling 31 HR, which is the most in the league. His K/BB ratio is also down a bit. Lester is a ticking time bomb waiting to explode. He has given up more hits than innings and his K/BB ratio is a dangerous 1.6:1. Since July 23rd, his ERA is a bloated 6.97. I think most of us can agree that Wells is done despite the fact he just recently pitched a quality game. Jason Johnson is just terrible. Since posting a respectable 3.43 in April, he has been awful. In May and June he went 1-8 with an ERA over 8. The Indians immediately cut him and Boston picked him up. He has had one good game against Tampa, but nothing more as a Red Sock. That leaves us with Schilling, who has been good for the most part. He is the only starter with an ERA below four, (while the Yankees have two, and Wright is just a hair above 4) but he certainly has been hittable; Heís given up quite a few more hits than innings pitched.

 

Look, Iím not trying to make the Yankees rotation out to be the 1970 Oís or the 1906 Cubs for that matter, but they are vastly better than whatever slop the Sox will put out there.

 

2. Lineup Depth

 

 

After the trading deadline, the Yankees added two good hitters to make an already good lineup very good. They added Bobby Abreu who is probably one of the best all around batters in the game and Craig Wilson, a right handed batter who has an .875 OPS against lefties. While the Yankees added two key pieces to their lineup, Boston lost two in Varitek and Nixon. Also, with the addition of Abreu, every batter from the second slot through the fifth has an OPS of .900. You canít say that about the Red Sox lineup. Also, if Matsui and Sheffield come back this season, this lineup will make Murderers Row look like this yearís Cubs order. With them in the lineup, pitchers just wonít have any break, especially when you have Abreu and Giambi who are one and two in pitches per at bat.

 

 

1. Mariano Rivera

 

Yes, the great Mariano is the number one reason.He has dominated his role like in the past decade like no one ever has, and hasnít shown any sign of slowing up. He has posted a minuscule ERA of 1.86 and is on pace to post an ERA below 2 and a WHIP below 1.1 for the fourth consecutive year. I understand that Papelbon has pitched brilliantly all year, but he has blown 5 saves, two of which came in consecutive games, something that Mariano hasnít done in 9 years. If you needed someone to close any particular game, who would you pick? Mo.

 

 

 

 

 

 




Disagree with something? Got something to add? Wanna bring up something totally new? Tony Aubry lives in Queens, New York, and can be reached at tony@baseballevolution.com.


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