(To read past year’s letters, click here)
Dear New York Yankees, (Because while they are not part of the division, are still are rivals in a way)
Ugh. You purchased your 27th World Series last year. You made the team better by acquiring Javier Vasquez from the Braves, even if he’s struggled as a Yankee before. But this doesn’t exactly guarantee the same success in 2010.
Your team looked old and over the hill last April but was able to bounce back. Eventually the age on the team won’t be able to do that, although Jeter and Rivera will certainly be trying so they can get that extra bit out of you in contract negotiations.
However, just about everything went right for you last season, and it’s not likely to go that way again. Will guys like Nick Johnson and AJ Burnett stay healthy? Will Granderson hit lefties? How many games can Posada play behind the plate? As I write this, Nick Johnson and Posada have both already been scratched from spring games this week.
It’s fair to say that the Yankees don’t have a ton of holes, but you do have two talented teams in your division that can exploit even the smallest problem in your game. The success of last year does mask a lot of possible problems that could open up and devour the team though. The handling of the bullpen, Joba and Hughes. The range and age of your shortstop. A-Rod’s hip, which was supposedly going to need more surgery but somehow didn’t. Are the Feds coming for A-Rod and why is he dodging them? Will Yankee Stadium in 2010 become the setting of some sort of Bourne film with A-Rod dashing through the stands with Matt Damon chasing him? It’s probably a safe bet that they all the holes won’t all open at once, and that the Yankees could overcome some of them, but that’s why we play the games. When the dust clears you may find yourselves in third place and playing golf in October.
Your cross-town rival,
Optimistic Mets Fan