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Why The New York Yankees Will Win The AL East

Circular Lineup

With the recent surges from Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner, faith has been restored that the table setters can, you know, set the table. Ellsbury has quietly been one of the top hitters on the team all year while staying on the field at a consistent rate. The catalyst has hit .284 with a .355 OBP in 56 games. In addition, Gardy has raised his average from .211 to .258 in the matter of 10 days while maintaining an impressive .374 OBP this year.

Move it to the middle of the lineup. With a vacancy supposed to be filled by Mark Teixeira, the Yankees have certainly gotten by.

Carlos Beltran has been sensational in defying all odds placed on him prior to the season. His 16 homers and 44 RBIs put him on a 41 homer, 113 RBI pace. Brian McCann has struggled with his .222 average and 26 RBIs, but that only provides hope that a torrent second half can put him at his normal rate.

However, perhaps the most encouraging factor moving forward is Alex Rodriguez. Throughout struggles and successes, the Yanks have not committed to keeping A-Rod on the field everyday, even in a designated hitter role.

With rest provided by a relative lack of playing time, there is no reason to believe A-Rod cannot bring to the table in the second half what he brought to the table in the first half last year.

Rounding out the order, the Yanks continue to prove strong. Chase Headley has turned around his season by hitting .297 in his last 30 games, Starlin Castro has been an extremely worthy pickup with a productive bat, and Didi Gregorius remains steady with an average hovering around .270.

Barring a few factors spinning in the right direction, the Yankees can easily have the second best lineup in the AL East to only the Baltimore Orioles when it is all said and done.