We (Nappy, Ray Finkle, and myself) decided to do something different this year. Rather than have 3 separate team threads, with Nappy hijacking them all we just decided to combine it. More efficient yo. Anywho I will go first as the Yanks didn't make the playoffs, call it as you will highest draft pick for the lowest team. Ladies and Gentlemen YOUR 2014 New York Yankees!!! (Boos and Cheers) Goodbye: SP Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Mariano Rivera (retired), Alex Rodriguez (suspended), Andy Pettitte (retired), Joba Chamberlain, Vernon Wells, Phil Hughes Hello: OF Jacoby Ellsbury, C Brian McCann, SP Masahiro Tanaka, OF Carlos Beltran, 2B Brian Roberts, LHP Matt Thorton, UTL Kelly Johnson Outlook: I think the correct words for this years installment of the pinstripes is "question mark". This team either has the ability to be really good OR really bad. Rotation (Projected): 1)CC 2)Hiro 3)Nova/Tanka 4)Tanka/Nova 5)Pineda/Phelps/Warren/somebody CC had a bad year last year, and frankly hasn't been the same the past 2 years, Hiro needs to monitored this year ie Take him out in games in non-save situations in May up 6-1 etc, Sterling used to say WHAT Ivan are you going to get the good one or the bad one, this remains true here. The 5 spot is intriguing as there is in this rotation and the spring should answer it. But again question marks everywhere here. It could be a mediocre rotation or a rotation that could win 75-85 games between themselves. Tell will tell. Would obviously love to see CC adapt to more of a location guy now that he has less power alla Schilling did, Nova I believe needs to just develop or mature now (he could be a fantasy sleeper as far as a breakout year for you FBB players) and if Pineda just stays healthy this year I believe he is will ok, think like 150-160 IP. I wonder if they put him on an innings limit this year. Lineup (Projected): 1)Ellsbury 2)Jeter 3)Beltran 4)Tex 5)McCann 6)Sori 7)Johnson 8)Roberts 9)Gardner Obviously it goes without saying losing Robbie is a monumental loss, even though it was the right move for the money owed. The key is trying to wade the water until finding a suitable replacement. Once again barring injuries this lineup has a chance to put up some good numbers. I really hope they keep Gardner in the 9 hole, I would love to see Ellsbury follow him in the lineup. 2 singles would be men on 1st and 3rd with a good possibility of Ellsbury stealing 2nd. The options they have are numerous should they all remain healthy (big if). They wont be hitting many home runs though, besides slight upticks in Ellsbury and McCann's this lineup especially the infield is powerless. But that is okay, again IF healthy we can all agree that they are a pretty good ball on bat hitting lineup besides Roberts and Johnson. As for Roberts he can only go up. Bullpen: Replacing Mo. Simple as that. I hope D-Rob can do it, but I have my reservations about him. He has a large K rate but IMO he walks too many people. IF he can cut the BB, rely on his fastball to get into pitchers counts and out with the 12/6 he could be very good. Other than that though they are a pretty weak BP IMO, they went from having a decent one to a questionable one in a matter of one year. We may actually see Dellin Betances this year. They will have to find an 8th inning guy. Whoever isn't the 5th starter will get floated to the BP with the exception of Pineda. But yeah this BP scares me. Wrap-up: In the end I think they will be better than last year, just how much remains to be seen. I do believe that Boston will remain roughly the same not really better or worse, same with Tampa, Toronto who know what you will get, do they start slow again and fade? But IMO Balt will be more competitive. The AL East will in fact be a meat grinder this year, but that sems to be par for the course these years. Lastly, for me, this year will be special because of Derek. Watching him through the years, which was all the 5 championships I have seem, whether you like him or not he has provided us with multple memories. He did it the right way as well, I would just enjoy him because once he is gone folks much like Mo there are many like him around. When you think about it, Jeter has lived about the most ideal sporting life one could ever imagine. He played the best position in the best City (baseball wise) and seemed to do it seamlessly, all the while winning every award in baseball besides MVP without getting into the babymama dramas everybody else seems to be in. A true player that played the game his way, it is very impressive actually. Almost so impressive that he always seems to have things go his way as if he were to have a silver spoon in his mouth (banging a HR off the Top 3 LHP in YS for his 3000 hit comes to mind). I know people are predicting his downfall this year, but if he were to stay healthy would it really surprised you if Jeter hit .300? He did after all the year before his injury lead all of MLB in hits...... Prediction: 89-73 Misses playoffs by 2 games.