AGING YANKEES JUST NOT AS GOOD AS BOSTONBy Andrew Marchand
The Yankees aren't catching the Red Sox, because Boston is better.
The Yankees are a playoff team, but they have a little too much age and not enough talent to overtake the Red Sox.
Age shows up in injury and being able to handle the 162-game grind. Alex Rodriguez, soon to be 36, is already on the DL. A-Rod is probably going to be out until late August, maybe early September. His bat and maybe his glove will be missed.
Eduardo Nunez is a nice player at this point, but he has a little too much Nate Robinson in him. His out-of-control type of baseball can excite the fan base in short bursts, but with extended playing time, he will likely get exposed.
Next to Nunez, Derek Jeter, for all the 3K hysteria, has had two great games (in Texas and on 3K Day) surrounded by a lot of mediocre ones this season. Jeter doesn't figure to become stronger in the hot August sun.
Pitching-wise, Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia have given the Yankees a lot, but can anyone really expect a repeat of their results in the second half? It is doubtful.
Maybe Phil Hughes comes through and Ivan Nova comes back, but still that won't be enough.
The Yankees could add a big-time starter, but if it is not someone of at least Ubaldo Jimenez's ilk, I don't see how it will help too much.
The Yankees have a very good team. They don't feel great. They feel like a team that makes the playoffs as the wild card and then is bounced before the World Series.
TOO OLD? RED SOX ARE NO SPRING CHICKENS, EITHERBy Kieran Darcy
Today is July 19 -- there are 72 days remaining before the MLB regular season concludes on Sept. 28. The Yankees currently trail the Red Sox by 1.5 games in the American League East -- one game in the loss column.
I think they have enough time to make up that ground. And if they don't, it certainly will not be because of age.
If you take a look at the teams' respective rosters, both the Yankees and Red Sox have three players in their regular everyday lineup who are age 35 or older.
In the Bronx, you've got Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada. In Beantown, you've got David Ortiz, Marco Scutaro and J.D. Drew. And if you match these guys up, their numbers are pretty comparable.
Turning to the starting rotations, the Yankees do currently feature 34-year-old A.J. Burnett, 35-year-old Freddy Garcia and 38-year-old Bartolo Colon. But all three of them have been vastly better than Boston 32-year-old John Lackey. And, while 20-something starters Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz are currently serving time on the DL, the Red Sox are sending 44-year-old Tim Wakefield to the hill every fifth day.
In the bullpen, the Yankees are depending on 41-year-old Mariano Rivera -- but as everyone knows, Rivera and his cutter are still performing like they're in their prime.
Let's be honest -- both these teams will make the playoffs. But the AL East crown won't be decided by how old the Yankees, or the Red Sox, are.
The more likely deciding factor? Which team's GM can make a bigger move before the trading deadline.