Monday, July 19, 2010

Pettitte a tough loss for Yanks to overcome

I've long believed that a major injury to one of the Core Four would have the greatest potential to derail the New York Yankees this year. That injury came yesterday to Andy Pettitte.

Pettitte is heading to the disabled list, out for at least four to five weeks, according to general manager Brian Cashman. While I think losing Mariano Rivera for that amount of time would be a greater loss due to the mess that is the Yankees bullpen (which actually did well in yesterday's victory), Pettitte has been the most reliable member of the Yankees rotation all year. Losing him will be tough to overcome and the fans know it, with 60% saying they are very concerned about his injury in a Daily News poll.

The media is now begging for a trade and I'm sure Cashman will look at all available starting options. But I doubt he's going to mortgage the future with the Yankees still in the first place with the best record in baseball. None of the internal options such as Sergio Mitre or Chad Gaudin can really take Pettitte's place, but if they can hold opposing teams to three or four runs each outing, that might be enough to keep the Yankees in games, especially with Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez finally swinging the bats well.

But no matter how the Yankees play it, losing Pettitte is a major blow. With AJ Burnett’s struggles, Pettitte had become the stopper of losing streaks and I doubt that’s a role that either Mitre or Gaudin can fill.

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