2012 World Series Predictions
With all the hoopla teams like the Detroit Tigers and the LA Angels are getting this Spring Training, many people are overlooking a lot of good teams that you can categorize as the “Usual Suspects.” Powerhouses like the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox are all of the sudden being listed as underdogs in comparison to the Tigers, Angels and Phillies.
When it comes to the pinstripes, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman finally realized that offense doesn’t win championships, but rather defense and pitching. Thus, the Yanks have gone out and revamped a starting rotation that had a rookie pitcher as its second best starter in Ivan Nova.
“I don’t usually feel pressure,” said Nova, who went 16-4 last season. “When I feel pressure, I don’t let nobody see my pressure. I try to be relaxed and focused all the time.”
The addition of RHPs Hiroki Kuroda and Michael Pineda along with the return of veteran LHP Andy Pettitte certainly could give the Bronx Bombers the 5-man rotation is hasn’t had for quite some time now, especially in the MLB postseason.
The fact that one of Joe Girardi’s biggest challenges this Spring Training has been the need to rim the pitching rotation to five men is a great problem to have. The competition for a spot in the Yankees rotation came to an end when the newly acquired Pineda was placed on the disabled list due to a shoulder issue.
Nevertheless, the Bronx Bombers expect the 23-year-old Dominican along with 39-year-old, 5-time World Series champ to rejoin the team in the near future. For New York fans, this is a commodity not many teams around the league will have this season. It’s going to be great to see how Pettitte looks and how Pineda will handle the pressures of playing in the Big Apple.
“I have to keep an eye on that to see how guys are reacting, to see if they’re carrying one start to the next, if they’re not putting things behind them the way they should, if you feel the ball’s not coming out of their hand the way it should.”
When you put a solid rotation with a bullpen that ranked among the best in baseball a year ago, you’re taking about a championship caliber team. RHP Mariano Rivera, RHP David Robertson, RHP Rafael Soriano, LHP Boone Logan and RHP Corey Wade should give the Yankees all the depth they need late in games.
One thing when it comes to the Yankees is certain: who ever is on the mound is sure to have plenty of run support on a nightly basis. The projected lineup for the 2012 NY Yankees looks like this:
- (SS) Derek Jeter [Batted .297 in 2011]
- (CF) Curtis Granderson [41 HR, 119 RBI in 2011]
- (2B) Robinson Cano [Reigning back-to-back Silver Slugger Award winner]
- (3B) Alex Rodriguez [16 HR, 62 RBI in 373 at-bats in 2011]
- (1B) Mark Teixeira [39 HR, 111 RBI in 2011]
- (LF) Nick Swisher [23 HR, 85 RBI in 2011]
- (C) Russell Martin [18 HR, 65 RBI in 2011]
- (DH) Raul Ibanez [20 HR, 84 RBI in 2011]
- (RF) Brett Gardner [.345 OBP, 45 SB in 2011]
“He’s dangerous, and I think he’ll remain dangerous wherever we put him,” Girardi said of his superstar second baseman being moved to the third spot in the batting order. “Wherever we put him, he’s going to be productive.”
Check out the latest 2012 World Series Odds and how the New York Yankees rank as we get set to begin the 2012 MLB season!