Only a month and a half into the season and it looks like the New York Yankees have found their identity post Derek Jeter.
By Michael Iuzzini
No, you are not looking at the standings upside down. The New York Yankees are on top of the American League East. Ever since the third week of the season the Yanks have found a rhythm and are becoming the team to beat.
Brian Cashman filled the voids and Joe Girardi has coached the team to where they stand. Even with Masahiro Tanaka out with an elbow injury and CC Sabathia being consistently inconsistent, the team has found ways to win.
Michal Pineda and the Yanks bullpen have been solid. Dellin Betances and Andrew Miller have been dominant all year.
Jacoby Ellsbury is on fire posting a .346 batting average and Mark Teixeira gluten-free and all has 11 jacks and leads the team with 27 RBI’s.
Alex Rodriguez, who is having the strangest season of his career after returning from his one year suspension has been explosive and has played a tremendous part in his team’s success.
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) May 8, 2015
It has been awkward at times of the strained relationship between the Yankees brass as A-Rob climbs the home run leaders list but Rodriguez for probably the first time in his career has kept his opinions to himself and is just playing baseball. Girardi toyed around with A-Rod playing first but that experiment is over. A-Rod is going to be the permanent DH.
The Yankees bats have been hot. Brett Gardner is batting .318. Ellsbury and Gardner have been the best one to punch in the league. The past 16 games the two have batted .384 combined. Brian McCann wanted to not emulate the slow start he had last season, he has done that.
Fielding was ugly at the start but the gloves have come around and the team has settled down in that category.
It is only 35 games into the season but the “New” New York Yankees are finding a way to step out from behind the Derek Jeter shadow and show the league that life without Jeter does exist.
Joe Girardi has juggled the lineup and looks to have found a winning formula. Hitting coach Jeff Pentland deserves a pat on the back along with Pitching coach Larry Rothschild.
Cashman has worked around the new Steinbrenner budget and gave Girardi the right pieces to work with. Baseball is a long season, but this team has reminded fans that we did not only watch the Yankees for Jeter.
We watch because we love the team. This Yankees squad is making it very easy to do just that.
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