2011 Record: 97-65
2011 Expected W-L: 101-61
With all the Yankees having reported to spring training, this squad looks like to be the roster for the 2012 season. New York has made many moves in the offseason to make sure they stay atop the standings and maybe take some of their success all the way until the end of October.
Michael Pineda and Hiroki Kuroda gives the Yankees some more solid starters behind CC Sabathia. With A.J Burnett now gone from the rotation, the Yankees have Phil Hughes and Freddy Garcia as possible fifth starters.
David Robertson is a great setup man behind Mariano Rivera, but will most likely regress a bit as his stats are inhuman to keep up. Aardsma is a great insurance policy in case of injuries or poor performances by any other reliever.
Ivan Nova, despite his stellar rookie year, is projected to regress slightly as his run support in 2011 was insanely high. If he wants to repeat any of his 2011 success he is going to have to walk less batters and possibly turn his change-up into a strikeout pitch.
Which Team Will Give The Yankees The Most Trouble in 2012?
Losing Jesus Montero is not much of a big deal as a DH was easy to find and cheap to pick up. The Andruw Jones and Raul Ibanez platoon is a big improvement over Jorge Posada.
The only concern is the infield's average age: 33.5 years old. Highlighted by Alex Rodriguez's knee surgery, there is no reason not to believe there might be some regression.
Curtis Granderson's career averages also don't back up his 2011 MVP-caliber season.
The Yankees still have one of the top five offenses and now are arguably in the top five for pitching as well. If the AL East was an easier division I'd see them win over 100 games.
2012 Projected W-L: 99-63
First AL East