Thursday, May 20, 2010

Yanks in bad shape, literally and figuratively

This one really hurts. This is the injury the New York Yankees were hoping to avoid, the one that takes a core member off the team for a month.

We all remember what happened the last time Jorge Posada spent a lot of time on the disabled list in 2008, the first year since 1995 that the Yankees failed to make the playoffs. The Yankees are hoping to avoid that fate, but the task is getting tougher.

The Yankees could have easily survived losing Curtis Granderson for a few weeks and Nick Johnson for months had they not had a string of nagging injuries hit the other mainstays of their lineup. But the Posada injury is the potential backbreaker. Francisco Cervelli has played well, but he is a catcher and they are not supposed to play every day, no matter how young they are. And he will have to play every day, as the Yanks may fill Posada's spot with one of their promising, but not quite ready stud catching prospects.

The good news for the Yankees is that Granderson is getting closer to a return, although Johnson may be out forever. But the centerfielder won't be back in time to help the Yankees avoid falling five games behind the ultra-hot Tampa Bay Rays tonight and battle their cross-town rivals this weekend.

Despite the injury troubles of late, the Yankees still have the second-best record in baseball. But eventually injuries catch up to any team (see Mets) and Posada’s fractured foot could be the most painful of them all.

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