Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Yankees’ stagnant offense puts pressure on fragile rotation

Through most of the first four months of the season, the New York Yankees offense was one of the high-points of the club. They were second in the league in scoring and fairly consistent. The production was typically spread throughout a majority of the lineup; just about everyone helped produce runs at some point. But, once August came around, the offense has been sputtering more than effective and it is putting pressure on a fragile rotation.

Through Tuesday’s 15-1 blowout at the hands of the Houston Astros, the Yankees rank among the worst offensive teams in the league.

That’s not going to win many games and it hasn’t as the Yankees are 11-12 for the month. The reason the Yankees have been able to stay close to .500 for the month is the rotation.

Even with last night’s drubbing of Ivan Nova (seven earned runs in four innings), the Yankees rotation has a 3.85 ERA in August. This is nothing spectacular, but it would still rank as the best measure by month for the season.

The Yankees rotation is a fragile one. Each member of the rotation that started the season has seen time on the disabled list except for Nathan Eovaldi, who has been sensational. Michael Pineda returns Wednesday, after the club seemingly lost CC Sabathia for at least 15 games (it could be a lot longer). The rotation is also relying on a 21-year-old rookie in Luis Severino to provide quality outings (which he has).

A division race is a pressure situation in and of itself, but when coupled with an anemic offense, it’s like a tea kettle ready to blow its lid. If the Yankees expect to contend for a playoff position (they are one game back in the AL East and four-and-a-half games ahead in the wild card race) they will need to get the offense back in gear and hope they have not overstressed their rotation.

Christopher Carelli is a freelance baseball writer. Besides his work here, Christopher is a featured Yankees writer for His baseball commentary has also been published on Yahoo Sports and linked multiple times on MLB Trade Rumors’ Baseball Blogs Weigh In. He is a member of the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America, the Baseball Bloggers Alliance and the BYB Hub.