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Two Non Move That Cost the Yankees

By Mike Silva ~ October 25th, 2010. Filed under: Mike Silva, New York Yankees.

Very rarely do you say a team with a $214 million dollar payroll was short on talent come the playoffs. The reality of the Yankees situation is there were two moves they needed to make in order to win the American League: obtain another starting pitcher and a left handed reliever.

The first part of that equation is not entirely Brian Cashman’s fault as he had Cliff Lee signed, sealed, and delivered in early July. Jack Zduriencik decided that Justin Smoak is more valuable than Jesus Montero and the rest is history. Regardless, other veteran arms, like Ted Lilly, could have been acquired once the Lee trade went up in smoke. I have a hard time believing the Yankees couldn’t beat the package of Kyle Smit, Blake DeWitt, and Brett Wallach. Maybe the Yankees didn’t want to give up youth for a 34 year old pitcher, but then it shouldn’t be a surprise they struggled in the postseason. Someone like Lilly could have limited Phil Hughes innings, rendered A.J. Burnett insignificant, and might have actually beaten the Texas Rangers. This non move becomes even more of an issue when Andy Pettitte went down in July.

The second piece, a left handed reliever, is far more perplexing because the Yankees had no depth in their system behind Damaso Marte. Hearing that Marte will not start throwing till the All Star Break of next season makes you believe this injury was serious from the beginning. Marte’s final 2010 appearance was on July 7th, a full three weeks before the trade deadline. Brian Fuentes was actually acquired by the Twins on August 27th during the waiver period. Earlier in the year Ron Mahay, Will Ohman, and Joe Beimel could have been had for just money. The Yankees were lucky Boone Logan pitched well after his trip to the minors or they wouldn’t have any lefty in the bullpen. Knowing Marte’s health has been an issue in the past should have triggered a move earlier, or possibly incorporating Royce Ring into the equation. Ring pitched well for Scranton (1.93 ERA), but only got five September appearance, not nearly enough to judge his effectiveness.

Many have been blamed for the Yankees ALCS demise, Joe Girardi first and foremost, but two non moves by Brian Cashman might be the crux of why they are sitting home today and not preparing for Game 1 at AT&T Park on Wednesday.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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