New York Yankees: Who (Not Named Jeter or Rivera) Will Retire to Monument Park?
The New York Yankees are known as the most successful franchise in all of sports. Their winning ways has been in large part thanks to the legends who have dawned the pinstripes.
Ruth, Gehrig, Ford, Munson...the list goes on and on. With current Yankees Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter already shoe ins to have their faces cemented in bronze. we take a look at five other Yankees who could join them in Yankee Stadium's Monument Park.
Bern baby Bern! The Yankees center fielder from 1991-2006 was an intricate part of the Yankees dynasty of the 1990's.
Williams, a fan favorite, helped lead the Yankees to four world series victories from 1996-2000 and accumulated five straight All-Star games from 1997-2001.
Williams also has four Gold Gloves to his resume, a Silver Slugger and a 1996 ALCS MVP award. He has a career batting average just under .300 with 287 HRs and 1,257 RBI's.
Bernie is one of only 10 Yankees to ever be in pinstripes for 16 years, an amazing feat. On top of that, his 2,336 hits with the Yankees trumps Monument Park member Reggie Jackson's mere 661 career Yankee hits.
Although Bernie may have never put up the numbers to make the Baseball Hall of Fame, he definitely deserves his name in Monument Park. No one has worn the No. 51 jersey since Williams' retirement in 2006, and soon, No. 51 should hang amongst fellow Yankee greats.
Before any Yankee lover freaks out that Sabathia could be put in the same class as Whitey Ford and Ron Guidry, hear me out.
Sabathia is only in his third year as a Yankee and is off to a great start. In two and a half years as the pinstripes ace, Sabathia has posted 54 wins, two All-Star appearances and the all mighty World Series ring.
Sabathia is currently leading the MLB in wins with 14 and has no sign of slowing down. He is on pace for his second straight 20 win season and is making it look easy.
Though, C.C. has an option to become a free-agent at the end of this season, he has been adamant about how much he loves playing for the Yankees.
Sabathia is only 31 years old, and if he can put up another 5-7 years of 20 win seasons (very possible) and a World Series ring or two, Yankee management would be hard pressed not to retire Sabathia's No. 52.
Andy Pettitte is a Yankee through and through. Yes, that means I am blocking out those three years he had a mental lapse and decided to play dress up in a Houston Astros uniform.
Pettitte was the Yankees first dominant ace since Ron Guidry. He was a crafty lefty who trotted out there every five days and gave you seven to eight quality innings.
Andy has 240 career wins, which is 70 more than Guidry and four more than Ford, and he led the Yankees to five World Series championships. Five World Series rings should qualify Pettitte alone, considering he holds the most wins ever in postseason play (19)
Pettitte probably would have a legitimate chance of making the Hall of Fame if it were not for his HGH scandal. Yankee fans have seemed to forgive ole' Andy, and it looks like No. 46 will be making it Monument Park.
Jorge Posada joins Bernie Williams as one of only 10 Yankees to have played in pinstripes for more than 16 seasons. Playing in his 17th season as a Yankee, Hip Hip Jorge has been a constant for Yankee fans, and No. 20 should see Monument Park.
Even though Posada is not having a stellar 2011 season, his career numbers do him justice. Posada has 1,638 career hits, 270 HRs and five All-Star appearances. I know these numbers don't jump off the page, but for a catcher, they're extremely impressive.
To compare, Posada actually has better numbers than former Yankee catcher Elston Howard, whose legacy now lives on in Monument Park. Howard did play less time and his character achievements are well deserving off Monument Park, but Posada has 200 more hits and 50 more home runs
Posada has been a constant behind the plate for the Yankees and controlled a pitching staff that has led to five World Series championships. Posada will have his No. 20 retired.
The sweet-swinging Robinson Cano often goes over looked by Yankee fans when discussing future greats. You heard it here first; Cano will be one of the all time best.
Robbie is on pace to be one of the best, if not the best, second basemen to ever wear pinstripes. Cano has it all, and his stats are good enough to make a strong case that he will be in Monument Park.
Cano has 1,184 hits in his first seven years in the league. This is only 10 hits behind where Derek Jeter was at in his first seven years, and Cano also has 33 more HRs then Jeter had at this time.
Cano is only 28 years and if (it's a big if) he stays a Yankee for life and continues to produce the way he has been, then Cano will surely have his No. 24 cemented in Monument Park.
I believe Robbie Cano will be the most likely candidate on this list to reach Monument Park, and don't be too surprised if Cano finishes his career as the most prolific hitting second baseman of all time. Three thousand hits and 300 HRs, anyone?