As the Monday after the Super Bowl marked the unofficial start of Baseball Season, it's time to take a look at the additions and subtractions to the reigning World Champs.
Certainly the biggest splash made by the Yanks this offseason was the trade for Curtis Granderson. They sent Austin Jackson, who was their top prospect, as well as Phil Coke, who was the primary left handed reliever, to Detroit. They also shipped Ian Kennedy to the D'backs to balance out the trade. I like the move, because Curtis is an established player at the big league level and will take advantage of that short porch in right. But you never know what your going to get out of a prospect and Phil Coke is a good pitcher, kind of faded down the stretch but still a solid lefty out of the 'pen, so I give this move an A-.
The addition of Javier Vazquez is a little bit more of a risk. The Yanks basically got Javy for Melky Cabrera, their every day center fielder last year and a fan favorite. Javy is a great power pitcher who can usually be found among the leaders in strikeouts every year, but he is 33 and didn't fair to well with the Yanks the last time. Apparently he is blaming injuries were the problem in his first go around. But if he does a solid job and stays healthy he's perfect for the 4th starter, so I give this move a C+.
The signing of Nick Johnson is probably the biggest risk of all, considering his past injury plagued seasons, I don't really care for this move. Granted he's on base all the time, but his power numbers have dropped, especially last year when he hit only eight home runs. I don't think he's going to be the bat that can replace Damon or Matsui but maybe I'm wrong, we will have to see, I give this move a C-.
Randy Winn and Marcus Thames both were braught in to compete with Gardner in left field, don't really think either will make a big impact for the Yanks, unless Gardner gets hurt or is a flop in Spring. Winn has the skills in the field and on the bases, Thames has the power at the plate, I'll give both signings a D-.
MAJOR ADITIONS: Granderson, Vazquez, Johnson, Winn, Thames.
MAJOR SUBTRACTIONS: Damon(pending), Matsui, Cabrera, Jackson, Coke.
FINAL GRADE: C
Not the most exciting Offseason by any means, but still sufficient enough to repeat as World Champs in 2010.