December 30th is one of the few days of the year on which no Yankee,
past or present was born. So last year on this date, I presented this
“Top Ten Yankees of the Decade” post. This year, I thought I’d condense
that a bit and discuss who the five players are who’ve contributed the
most to Yankee baseball over the past five years.
1. Derek Jeter – this list has to start with “The Captain.” Despite
his first-ever mediocre year in 2010 and the needless and very
derogatory comments made about him by the Yankee front office during
his just-completed contract negotiation, Jeter remains the classiest
act in all of baseball and is still the straw that stirs this Yankee
team. I’m predicting he will be back better than ever in 2011.
2. Robinson Cano – His awesome 2010 regular season performance and
the fact that he finally put together some offense in a postseason has
convinced me that this guy has the entire package necessary to be
baseball’s best second baseman for at least the next five years.
3. Mariano Rivera – The only reason he is not number two on my list
is the inability of the rest of New York’s pitching staff to get him
any save situations in this year’s ALCS against Texas. The best closer
4. Alex Rodriguez – Has become the all-time greatest third baseman
in Yankee franchise history but his recent injuries and longer term
power outages may be evidence of the magic of performance enhancing
pharmaceuticals unhappening right before our eyes.
5. You decide who belongs in this slot and let the rest of our
readers know by posting your answer in the “comments” section below.
Candidates include Pettitte, Sabathia, Matsui, Teixeira, Damon, Posada,
When this big lefthander admitted he’d taken a human growth hormone and then went 14-14 during his second season back with the Yankees in 2008, I thought we’d seen the last of Andy Pettitte. But instead, the Baton Rouge, Louisiana native persevered and his 14-8 regular-season performance in 2009 and his absolutely amazing 4-0 run in that year’s postseason cemented his place as one of the great starters in Yankee team history. He then got off to a great start in 2010 and became just the third Yankee pitcher ever to win 200 games for the franchise. He was already 11-2 when he took the mound on July 18, 2010 against Tampa Bay. In the third inning, Pettitte pulled a groin muscle while pitching to the Ray’s catcher, Kelly Shoppach. He did not pitch another game until September 19th and finished what would become his final season in pinstripes with an 11-3 record. Yankee fans were praying Andy would come back in 2011, especially after New York did not sign Cliff Lee but Pettitte announced instead that he was retiring. Personally, I think he should get into Cooperstown some day but I don’t think that’s going to happen.
|NYY (15 yrs)||213||120||.640||3.95||428||419||2||23||3||0||2679.1||2823||1302||1176||225||860||1944||1.375|
|HOU (3 yrs)||37||26||.587||3.38||84||83||1||2||1||0||519.2||497||217||195||52||142||428||1.230|