No matter what shape the Yankees are in as the season begins on Monday, there’s this.
Matsui will be throwing out the first pitch, and that alone makes me smile. Love Hideki.
So, the 2016 contest begins. I was excited about the bullpen since we didn’t get a front-line starter this off-season, but of course there have been setbacks already. Andrew Miller will be pitching with a fractured right wrist. His hand specialist gave him the go-ahead to pitch if he can tolerate the discomfort. Does that sound like a recipe for success? I don’t think so either. I can’t concentrate if I have a hangnail.
And then there’s poor Bryan Mitchell. The kid was all set to make the roster, having had a great spring, and then – bam. Broken toe. Is covering first base really that hard for a pitcher to do without getting injured? Apparently.
CC will be the rotation’s 5th starter “for now,” as Girardi and Cashman make a point of clarifying, so as to give Ivan Nova hope that he’ll escape from the pen if CC falters. As for Tanaka, he gets the nod to start on Monday despite having had a less than stellar spring.
But here’s the thing. If Ellsbury can stay healthy for decent periods of time (a big “if,” I know; ditto: Headley) and if A-Rod, Beltran, McCann and Teixeira can hit bombs and if Didi and Starlin turn out to be a really good defensive team, the Yankees will be in a position to challenge the rest of the division. They might even make the playoffs.
The real problem is the YES-Comcast battle. I have Charter, so I’m okay for watching the games, but I do feel for my friends in the Comcast area. It’s a pity that these big companies can’t put the fans’ interests ahead of their own for once, but such is life.
Meanwhile, play ball! And may the 2o16 season be filled with wins or at least lots of hilarity.