New York Yankees: One Player on Each Team Who Fans Hate to See Coming to Town

Colton Kokrda@kokrdaCorrespondent IFebruary 28, 2012

New York Yankees: One Player on Each Team Who Fans Hate to See Coming to Town

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    The next baseball season is right around the corner, and that means a whole new set of teams coming to the Bronx to take on the New York Yankees this season.

    Each and every team has a life of one season, that is born at the start of spring training and dies when the last pitch of the World Series is thrown. Dynamics may change throughout the offseason with either key personnel leaving or coming in, coaching staff changes or even just a change in dynamics amongst the returnees.

    There is always a player on opposing teams that Yankee fans wish they did not have to face and was on their side instead.

    Here is one player from team in the MLB that Yankees fans hate to see come to the Bronx.

Arizona Diamondbacks: Ian Kennedy, Starting Pitcher

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    Nothing hurts more for Yankees fans than to see a former top prospect that the organization gave up on thrive for another team.

    Ian Kennedy had a breakout season last year for the Arizona Diamondbacks, earning a 21-4 record and a very cool 2.88 ERA with 198 strikeouts in 222 innings.

    While the trade did bring in clubhouse favorite Curtis Granderson, the knowledge that they lost a pitcher with the potential of Kennedy hurts many fans.

    Honorable Mention: Justin Upton, right fielder

Atlanta Braves: Craig Kimbrel, Closer

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    Last season, Craig Kimbrel was one of the most dominant forces to come out of the bullpen.

    He pitched 77 total innings, but struck out an amazing 127 batters. This produced a 14.84 K/9 that equals domination. All fans need to know is that when Kimbrel enters the game, it likely signifies the end and a win for the Braves.

    Honorable Mention: Brian McCann, catcher

Baltimore Orioles: Nick Markakis, Right Fielder

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    Nick Markakis has had a productive career when he faces the Yankees. Regarded as one of the best hitters for a weak Baltimore lineup in recent years, this is expected and understandable.

    Markakis has a career .305 average with 13 home runs and 52 RBI in 107 games against the Yankees.

    Honorable Mention: Brian Roberts, second baseman

Boston Red Sox: David Ortiz, Designated Hitter

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    Every Yankee fan remembers the 2004 ALCS and the heartbreak that surrounded it. One of the key players for that comeback for the Red Sox was David Ortiz.

    Ortiz has always played well against the Yankees in his career. He has a .303 batting average, with 36 home runs and 127 RBI in 170 games against the Yankees in his career.

    His knack to come up in the clutch time after time for Boston when they are playing the Yanks is a constant thorn in the side for fans.

    Honorable Mention: Josh Beckett, starting pitcher

Chicago Cubs: Starlin Castro, Shortstop

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    At only 21 years old, Starlin Castro is one of the up-and-comers in Major League Baseball, already establishing himself as one of the top shortstops in the game.

    Last season was the first time Castro faced the Yankees and he hit .385 with 2 doubles.

    While he won't be a threat for the home run very often, this kid can flat out play baseball.

    Honorable Mention: Alfonso Soriano, left fielder

Chicago White Sox: Paul Konerko, First Baseman/Designated Hitter

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    Paul Konerko turns into an absolute machine when he faces the Yankees.

    Here is his career line against the Yanks: .318 batting average, 20 home runs, 60 RBI

    And just to mention, that is in 89 games. Of the teams that he has faced at least 50 times in his career, he has the highest rate of production against the Bronx Bombers.

    Yankee fans should hate to see him in the lineup against the Yankees.

    Honorable Mention: A.J. Pierzynski, catcher

Cincinnati Reds: Joey Votto, First Baseman

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    Joey Votto is one of the best players in the MLB today, let alone at his position.

    A career .313 hitter, he can hit against seemingly any team. The Yankees are no exception.

    While it is only a very small sample size of six games, Votto has a .348 career average against the Yankees.

    Honorable Mention: Aroldis Chapman, relief pitcher

Cleveland Indians: Carlos Santana, Catcher

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    We reach the Cleveland Indians, who have a young stud of a catcher named Carlos Santana. He is turning 26 this year and this kid can crush the ball.

    Last season he hit .239 with 27 home runs and 79 RBI to lead the Indians' offense. While he doesn't hit for high average, he is always a threat for the long ball.

    Honorable Mention: Derek Lowe, starting pitcher

Colorado Rockies: Troy Tulowitzki, Shortstop

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    Arguably the top shortstop in the game today, Troy Tulowitzki is a player that opposing fans always dread when he steps up to the plate.

    A career .293 hitter, Tulo has accumulated 122 home runs and 443 RBI in his career thus far.

    In a small sample size against the Yankees, he has a .381 batting average with two home runs in six games.

    Honorable Mention: Carlos Gonzalez, outfielder

Detroit Tigers: Miguel Cabrera, First/Third Baseman

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    Miguel Cabrera may be one of the most feared hitters in all of baseball. Last year's AL Batting Champion has a career average of .317.

    His numbers against the Yankees are astounding.

    In 30 games, he has hit for an average of .378 with 10 home runs and 26 RBI.

    Honorable Mentions: Prince Fielder, first baseman and Justin Verlander, starting pitcher

Houston Astros: Carlos Lee, First Baseman/Left Fielder

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    On a very weak Houston Astros team that eclipsed the 100 loss mark last season, Carlos Lee was one of the few bright spots in the offense.

    He hit .275 with 18 home runs and 94 RBI last season.

    Against the Yankees, he has hit .264 with 7 home runs and 27 RBI in 54 games.

    Honorable Mention: Brett Myers, starting pitcher

Kansas City Royals: Billy Butler, Designated Hitter

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    Billy Butler has been a leader for the Kansas City Royals during his career and has been a cornerstone in their offensive attack.

    A career .297 hitter, Butler has accumulated 74 home runs and 373 RBI thus far.

    Against the Yankees, he has a nice .302 average with 2 home runs and 13 RBI in 33 games.

    Honorable Mention: Eric Hosmer, first baseman

Los Angeles Angels: Albert Pujols, First Baseman

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    This one is a no-brainer. One of the most feared hitters joins the American League for the first time in his career and that means he will be facing off against the Yankees more often.

    Albert Pujols already has many accomplishments in his career. He has a .328 career average with 445 home runs and 1329 RBI.

    Look for him to dominate the AL as well.

    Honorable Mention: Vernon Wells, left fielder

Los Angeles Dodgers: Matt Kemp, Center Fielder

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    Matt Kemp is one of the best outfielders in the game today.

    Many argue he was the rightful MVP of the National League last season, after he hit .324 with 39 home runs and 126 RBI.

    He has the rare combination of speed, power and the ability to hit for high average, as he had 40 steals last season. That combination will drive teams nuts.

    Honorable Mention: Clayton Kershaw, starting pitcher

Miami Marlins: Jose Reyes, Shortstop

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    The Miami Marlins made a few big splashes this offseason to compliment their new stadium. Possibly the biggest acquisition was shortstop Jose Reyes.

    Reyes has played the Yankees fairly often in his career considering the yearly Subway Series that takes place in New York.

    He has a career .271 average with 5 home runs, 27 RBI and 14 steals against the Yankees. His offensive production isn't very scary at all. However, what makes him so deadly is his speed.

    When Reyes gets on base, he easily distracts pitchers due to his superb speed.

    Honorable Mentions: Mike Stanton, right fielder and Hanley Ramirez, third baseman/shortstop

Milwaukee Brewers: Ryan Braun, Left Fielder

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    The NL MVP from last season, Ryan Braun is one of the elite hitters in the MLB today. He posted a .332 average with 33 home runs and 111 RBI last season for the Milwaukee Brewers, helping lead them to the NLCS.

    In the only three games of his career against the Yankees, Braun has a ridiculous .700 batting average, going 7-for-10.

    Honorable Mention: Zack Greinke, starting pitcher

Minnesota Twins: Joe Mauer, Catcher/First Baseman

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    Well played, Joe Mauer.

    Since his arrival in the MLB, Mauer has been one of the best hitting catchers. A career .323 hitter, he also has an MVP title under his belt.

    While his numbers against the Yankees aren't as strong as his career numbers, they are still very good. He has a .299 average with 5 home runs and 17 RBI in 44 games against the Bronx Bombers.

    Honorable Mention: Carl Pavano, starting pitcher (because all Yankee fans dislike him)

New York Mets: David Wright, Third Baseman

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    The best player left on the New York Mets is also the player that Yankees fan hate to see the most when the two meet up.

    David Wright has compiled a .300 average with 183 home runs and 725 RBI in his career thus far.

    Against the Yankees, Wright has hit .314 with 7 home runs and 26 RBI in 36 games in his career. Not to mention his excellent defense at third base makes him a very tough competitor for the Yankees.

    Honorable Mention: Johan Santana, starting pitcher

Oakland Athletics: Yoenis Cespedes

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    Yoenis Cespedes is going to be a great player for the Oakland Athletics for many years to come.

    After playing well in Cuba, Cespedes is coming over to the United States to play in the best league for baseball. He signed a four-year, $36 million contract this offseason with the Athletics.

    The main reason the Yankee fans will hate to see Cespedes come to the Bronx will be because the Yankees had a chance to bring him to the Bronx.

    Honorable Mention: Manny Ramirez, designated hitter (if he makes the team)

Philadelphia Phillies: Roy Halladay, Starting Pitcher

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    The most consistent pitcher of this era, Roy Halladay of the Philadelphia Phillies had the Yankees' number since his days with the Toronto Blue Jays.

    He has a career record of 18-7 with a 2.98 ERA and 195 strikeouts in 253.1 innings against the Yankees.


    Needless to say, Yankee fans are happy that Halladay is no longer in the AL East.

    Honorable Mention: Cliff Lee, starting pitcher

Pittsburgh Pirates: Andrew McCutchen, Center Fielder

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    Andrew McCutchen is one of the bright spots for the Pittsburgh Pirates. He has never faced the Yankees in his career, so let's throw out some of his stats overall.

    Last season, McCutchen hit .259 with 23 home runs, 89 RBI and 23 stolen bases. He is a career .276 hitter and compliments his offensive attack with solid defense in center field.

    Honorable Mention: Jose Tabata, left fielder

San Diego Padres: Huston Street, Closer

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    San Diego has a very young roster, so this pick was pretty tough to come up with. The most dangerous player on the roster, in terms of facing the Yankees, has been recently acquired Huston Street.

    In his career, Street has faced the Yankees in 13 games. He pitched 14 innings, only giving up one run earning himself a nice 0.64 ERA in the process.

    With a career line of 436.1 IP, 441 strikeouts and 178 saves, Street easily resembles the best established player on the Padres this season.

    Honorable Mention: Yonder Alonso, first baseman

San Francisco Giants: Buster Posey, Catcher

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    Buster Posey is one of the best young players in the game today. He joined the Giants' roster midseason in 2010 and helped lead them a World Series title while winning the Rookie of the Year.

    Posey is returning this year after his season was shortened last year following a nasty collision at home plate.

    His bat is scary in the middle of the lineup, especially coming out of the catcher position.

    Honorable Mention: Tim Lincecum, starting pitcher

Seattle Mariners: Felix Hernandez, Starting Pitcher

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    Felix Hernandez is the ace the Yankees have always coveted. General manager Brian Cashman has tried to acquire King Felix on multiple occasions, only to be told he is not available.

    In his career against the Yankees, Felix has a 6-4 record with a 3.29 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 79.1 innings.

    King Felix has the unique ability to stop a losing streak and has done that against the Yankees on multiple occasions.

    Honorable Mention: Jesus Montero, catcher/designated hitter

St. Louis Cardinals: Matt Holliday, Left Fielder

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    With the departure of Albert Pujols over the the LA Angels, Matt Holliday is now the best remaining hitter for the St. Louis Cardinals.

    Holliday holds a career line of .315 batting average, 202 home runs and 770 RBI.

    In a small sample size against the Yankees, Holliday has a .333 average with 1 home run and 7 RBI in nine games.

    Honorable Mention: Adam Wainwright, starting pitcher

Tampa Bay Rays: Evan Longoria, Third Baseman

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    Evan Longoria is without a doubt the best hitter for the Tampa Bay Rays. He is the cornerstone of the offense and the team is able to build around him.

    Against the Yankees, he has a career average of .280 with 13 home runs and 39 RBI in 64 games.

    While those numbers aren't amazing, he seems to come up big in the clutch for the Rays when facing the Yankees, such as the home run to propel Tampa into the postseason last year.

    Honorable Mention: Matt Moore, starting pitcher

Texas Rangers: Michael Young, Designated Hitter

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    Michael Young has been one of the most consistent players for the Texas Rangers over the years.

    That continues with his production against the Yankees in his career.

    In 89 career games against the Yankees, Young has an average of .304, 49 runs, 7 home runs and 50 RBI.

    Honorable Mention: Mike Napoli, catcher/designated hitter

Toronto Blue Jays: Jose Bautista, Right Fielder/Third Baseman

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    Jose Bautista has underwent a massive transformation in his career since arriving with the Toronto Blue Jays. He started his career as a journeyman with the Orioles, Rays, Royals and Pirates before coming to Toronto.

    A tweak in his swing has turned him into a monster power hitter.

    Since 2010, Bautista has hit 97 home runs. Any player with that kind of power surge is scary to have to face.

    Honorable Mention: Brett Lawrie, third baseman

Washington Nationals: Stephen Strasburg

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    If there is one thing that the MLB has learned, is that Stephen Strasburg can pitch.

    Since debuting for the Washington Nationals two years ago, Strasburg has been regarded as one of the best pitching prospects in the game.

    He returned from Tommy John surgery earlier than expected, pitching towards the end of last season. He is expected to be on an innings limit this season in his first full season after the surgery.

    He can still reach the mid-to-upper 90's with his fastball and has devastating breaking pitches. He is a strikeout machine.

    Honorable Mention: Ryan Zimmerman, third baseman