Friday, November 5, 2010

Yankees don't need Crawford or Werth

The New York Yankees need pitching, not hitting, despite the disappearance of their offense in the playoffs. That's why I believe the stories about their lack of interest in Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth.

Sure, the Yankees could be spinning the story to drive down the price for either or both of these guys. But in making their offseason plans this week, I totally buy that the discussion centered on how much money they can throw at Cliff Lee and a backup plan to trade for a good starting pitcher if Lee spurns them. The Yankees need another arm to go with CC Sabathia and Phil Hughes, especially if Andy Pettitte finally decides to go home for good. Brian Cashman and Joe Girardi believe AJ Burnett can rebound in 2011 and the next guy they hire to be their pitching coach will have the sole mission of fixing Burnett, but they can’t pin their hopes on being able to straighten him out.

When the Yankees look at their team, I don't think they see their outfield as a liability. Late in the baseball season, Curtis Granderson started to show the promise that led Brian Cashman to go after him and say goodbye to fan favorite Johnny Damon. Brett Gardner scored nearly 100 runs, mostly out of the 9th spot in the lineup, while bringing an element of speed that the team has been missing for a long time. And despite his second consecutive rough postseason, Nick Swisher had an All-Star year in hitting 29 homers and knocking in 89 runs.

This being the Yankees, I wouldn't rule them out of landing Crawford and/or Werth, especially if the market for free agents collapses again. But there won’t be intense pressure to sign either one like there was two winters ago to sign Sabathia. If Cashman hadn't gotten his man that time, his master plan for revamping the Yankees would have blown up in his face. But he got Sabathia and another World Series ring.

If Cashman can focus all his energy on Lee, he could add more jewelry to his collection. He doesn't need another bat for that, even if has the name Crawford or Werth on it.

Thanks to Keith Allison and phillymads63 via Wikipedia for the photos.

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