Remember how starting pitching was supposed to keep the Yankees afloat until help arrived?
So far, not so much. C.C. Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda and Ivan Nova have an 8.18 ERA. As Joe Girardi said after Nova allowed four runs in 4 2/3 innings, anyone can have one bad start. So maybe Sabathia, Kuroda and Nova are getting their bad ones out of the way right here at the beginning of the season.
Yes, things do get magnified in these early days when we’re desperately searching for trends. For the Yankees, there are too many to count. They’ve scored 13 runs in four games. They scored two on Opening Day and have thrown four on the board in every game since. But the Yankees acknowledged they were going to be offensively challenged.
That was going to be the case before Curtis Granderson, Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Mark Teixeira went on the Disabled List. The Yankees were hoping to get some offense out of Kevin Youkilis, Travis Hafner, Vernon Wells and the other veterans they’ve brought in. So far, it hasn’t shifted the bottom line.
But pitching was supposed to save the Bombers. Pitching is why it was difficult to dismiss the Yankees even as the injury list kept growing longer and longer during Spring Training. On Saturday, six of their nine starters were batting .200 or lower. One of the players who was hitting above .200 was Eduardo Nunez, who left the game after being hit on the left arm with a pitch.
The Yankees are hoping he’ll avoid the Disabled List, but their injury list is so long that it borders on ridiculous. Of their $228-million payroll, $91.1 million of it is on the Disabled List.