Ever since Chien-Ming Wang got injured on Sunday, there’s been more speculation on what's to come of the Yankees this season.
Wang will be out until at least September. When and if he does come back this season, how much can you seriously expect to get out of him?
We'll just have to wait until September to answer that.
Does this hurt the Yankees?
Is it the end of their season, however?
Wang is one man who pitches once every five days. Will he be missed on each and every one of those days?
Every pitcher in the major leagues will be traded to the Yankees before the trade deadline next month to fill Wang's void in the rotation.
Names like CC Sabathia, Randy Wolf, and a list so long of other potential suitors might make the cut to pitch in Wang’s place.
To make a trade for any of these pitchers the Yanks would have to move someone from their major league roster.
Will the Yankees trade anyone on their major league roster the way they're playing right now?
It’s doubtful, although with the Steinbrenner's history there’s a sure effort to do so.
General Manager Brian Cashman is smarter than that.
He will not pull the trigger on any deal unless he knows with certainty it's the right move to make. No matter how much pressure the Steinbrenner's put on him, Cashman would rather lose his job than hurt his team.
Let's not forget about the other four guys in the rotation.
Mike Mussina, who's having potentially the best season of his career.
Andy Pettitte, who's no slouch himself and pitched a pretty good game on Tuesday against San Diego to get to 7-5 on the season.
Joba Chamberlain, who's pretty much as nasty as they come, and he's still learning how to get better folks.
And last, but certainly not least, Darrell Rasner, an interesting case himself.
In several of his games, he got shelled and some of them were pretty good. He could pitch inside a little more, but who am I to say what he should do to be better?
The one thing most Yankee’s fans are sure of is that he will be good—sometimes. That's why he's your fourth starter and not your first. Rasner could win 10 games for them this season; he could also lose 10 games.
At some point in July, the Yanks will get Phil Hughes back.
There's the potential fifth man for the rotation.
The question is, will he be the Hughes that was terrible every time he pitched this year?
Or will he be the pitcher he is capable of being?
Which is the guy who almost threw a no-hitter against Texas last year. The season may hinge on his shoulders once back in the rotation.
Until that time, we'll watch others that may or may not be good.
We'll probably see Ian Kennedy again, but before that we'll see 31 year-old journeymen Dan Giese.
Giese has pitched well for the Yankees as a long reliever out of the bullpen. He's appeared in three games and only surrendered one run in seven and a third innings pitched.
The Yankees offense is rolling right now.
They're getting contributions throughout the lineup, from the leadoff guy down to the nine-hole hitter.
The sluggers are slugging, the slappers are slapping; everyone is finally performing as we expected them to.
The starters are holding opponents down while the offense tears opposing pitchers up. Should there be a close game, there's Mariano Rivera waiting in the back of the pen.
That's Yankee's baseball.
It's a long season, full of ups and downs, and we're only a little past the midway point in June.
The team is only five and a half games behind Boston in the standings. Can they catch them?
Of course they can.
Losing a pitcher of Wang's caliber right now certainly is not a good thing, but the whole team is not going to crawl into a corner because of it.
A trade could happen.
The Yankees are on a roll, so let's just sit back, relax and watch to see what happens for another week.
By the time we come back I'm sure they'll be something else juicy for us to talk about.