Soon, the Yankees will be installed as the odds-on favorite to win the 2020 World Series. To ensure that happens, be it resolved that…
The ensure the New York Yankees bring their 28th World Championship to their fans, a few New Years’ resolutions are in order. So, be it resolved that:
**** Giancarlo Stanton is blessed with an injury-free season.
Yankees fans and the team itself deserve a chance to see the immense talents of Giancarlo Stanton in full-bloom for a full season while he is still in his prime.
Last year needs to be erased from everyone’s memory as a lost season for Stanton, who managed to take the field only nineteen times.
The Yankees played like they didn’t miss him, but there remains the lingering question – could they have gone even further if Stanton was going full-bore, especially in the postseason?
2020 will be the actual test that decides if the Yankee’s undertaking of Stanton’s immense luxury-tax bite is worth having him on the team at all. Here’s hoping he passes the test.
**** Gio Urshela proves he is the real thing
Yankees fans reveled in the emergence of Gio Urshela and his unveiling by the Yankees in an under the radar trade during the 2018 offseason by Brian Cashman.
It will remain a mystery as to how Urshela became a .300 hitter overnight, but the fact is he did. Once a hitter, always a hitter?
Well, that’s the same thing the Yankees are wondering, and there’s a good chance they’re hanging on to high-value trade bait Miguel Andujar for the same reason because no one knows.
What we do know, though, is the Yankees need an above-average fielder playing third base – and there is no question Urshela fits the bill better than Andujar. Nevertheless, the battle for the position will play out in Spring Training.
**** Demand excellence from Luis Severino
Effectively, Luis Severino is the Yankees number three starter behind Gerrit Cole and Masahiro Tanaka. Some would even say he’s their number four, considering the Yankees need a lefty James Paxton in there somewhere.
Nevertheless, Severino needs to be treated as though he is being touted as the Number One he was two seasons ago. He’s young and impressive.
As such, Severino conceivably could become an afterthought in the Yankee’s rotation. They don’t want that.
They need him to be the bull on the mound to pitch in the shadow of Cole, but with a determination to be even better.
That’s one of the jobs new pitching coach, Matt Blake, signed up to deliver.
**** Yankees: Keep the veil over the head of Gary Sanchez
Gary Sanchez has captured the hearts of the Yankees. So be it. But at the same time, the “kid” he is no longer still needs to be handled with kid gloves.
The mystery of Gary Sanchez and the enigma he presents to fans and the Yankees is a story yet to be written.
No matter what the Yankees say, he can’t catch a lick, and the likelihood he’ll ever rise to the level of being a major league catcher remains a wish and a prayer.
But if he can stay healthy enough to keep the Yankees from resorting to Kyle Hiagshioka and Eric Kratz, he will have contributed to the team.
The power is there, and the home runs will come. It’s just a matter of everything in-between we’ll need to ignore.
**** Yankees Demand more from the starting pitchers
The Yankees have one of the best bullpens in baseball, but at the end of the season last year, the bullpen, except for Aroldis Chapman, appeared to be overworked.
Gerrit Cole will do his thing barring injury, and Tanaka can be counted on to give his typical six-inning outing, but from there, the Yankees need the same from their remaining starters.
It’s a mindset more than anything physical, and the one thing the Yankees captured in Cole that few speak of is his tenacity every fifth day. He’s not physically stronger than any of the Yankees other pitchers. He just has more “grit”.
So be it resolved that every pitcher will follow his lead in 2020.
**** Gleyber Torres continues on his road to the Hall of Fame
The Yankees have always known they have something extraordinary in Gleyber Torres. From the day they “stole” him from the desperate Chicago Cubs for Aroldis Chapman, Torres has been coddled like a mare bred from Secretariat.
We witnessed what most would call a breakout season from Torres last year, and it’s still hard to fathom the notion he hit 38 home runs, juiced ball or not.
The Yankees believe in him as well, so they have no apprehension about displacing Torres at second base to make way for DJ LeMahieu, and assigning Torres to the vacated position by Didi Gregorius at shortstop.
When we look back, 2020 will count as just another year in the development of Gleyber Torres. Where he stops, no one knows…