Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
2013 Draft Prep Guide
Gameday Inactives
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Red Zone Stats
Teams
Schedules
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Teams
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Teams
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Teams
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Teams
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2014 Fantasy Outlooks: New York Yankees

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

For just the second time in the last 19 years, the Yankees missed the playoffs in 2013, and though it wasn't the scandal it would have been under George Steinbrenner, the team ended up making some drastic changes in response.

For starters, Robinson Cano is now in Seattle. Normally, giving up your best player of the last five years isn't the best way to make up ground in the standings, especially when the replacement is a 36-year-old who has averaged 48 games the last four (looking at you, Brian Roberts), but the Yankees used the money they would have paid him to address several other needs, signing Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann to multi-year deals. Yes, gone are the days of them counting on Vernon Wells for 400 at-bats. Or even Ichiro Suzuki. The 40-year-old speedster, a mainstay in Fantasy lineups since breaking into the big leagues in 2001, is now confined to a backup role, buried beneath the Yankees' latest assortment of sluggers.

2014 Fantasy Outlooks
A.L. East N.L. East
Orioles Braves
Red Sox Marlins
Yankees Mets
Rays Phillies
Blue Jays Nationals
A.L. Central N.L. Central
White Sox Cubs
Indians Reds
Tigers Brewers
Royals Pirates
Twins Cardinals
A.L. West N.L. West
Astros Diamondbacks
Angels Rockies
Athletics Dodgers
Mariners Padres
Rangers Giants

Notice anything special about this particular assortment? Yup, they all bat left-handed (or primarily left-handed, in Beltran's case), which means they'll get every last benefit of playing half their games with a short porch in right field. McCann in particular is known for being a dead pull hitter. Ellsbury may not be a "slugger" in the truest sense, but he showed he's capable of hitting for power with his 32 home runs in 2011 and seems like the type of well-rounded player who would adapt his game based on his surroundings. Given everything else he does, he's a stud either way, but Fantasy owners would certainly welcome a resurgence in home runs.

The coup of the offseason for the Yankees, though, was landing Masahiro Tanaka, a 25-year-old right-hander who was putting up record numbers in Japan. Going in, he was considered the best free agent available at the Yankees' biggest position of need. He doesn't have Yu Darvish's stuff by all accounts, but with better command and a deep secondary arsenal, he's a legitimate top-of-the-rotation guy. Of course, he'll probably be in for an adjustment period, but as long as he's not the first pitcher you draft, you'll be satisfied with the results.

The only other major change to the pitching staff is at closer, where longtime setup man David Robertson takes over for retired legend Mariano Rivera. CC Sabathia showed last year he may be on his last legs at age 33, but fortunately, the cost on Draft Day should reflect it. The same is true for Mark Teixeira and Derek Jeter. Not so much Alfonso Soriano, who is entering crash-and-burn territory at age 38, but players who consistently deliver 30-plus homers have become so scarce that he's worth a middle-round pick, even with the risk.

No mention of Alex Rodriguez, huh? It's only fitting. Fantasy owners turned the page on him long ago.

Breakout ... David Robertson, relief pitcher

2014 projected lineup
Player Name Position
1. Jacoby Ellsbury CF
2. Derek Jeter SS
3. Carlos Beltran RF
4. Mark Teixeira 1B
5. Brian McCann C
6. Alfonso Soriano DH
7. Kelly Johnson 3B
8. Brian Roberts 2B
9. Brett Gardner LF
Bench Eduardo Nunez IF
Bench Ichiro Suzuki OF
You've seen this movie enough times to know how it turns out. Though the career setup man's transition to closer is met with great skepticism, with no one completely sure he'll still know which way is up with an elusive save on the line, he ends up being as effective as ever in the role when given a chance to settle into it. Robertson will most certainly get that chance. The owner has already said as much. The Yankees backed themselves into a corner by going over budget to sign Tanaka and have nowhere else to turn for the ninth inning. Fortunately, they're in good hands with the 28-year-old, who compiled a 1.91 ERA, 1.11 WHIP and 12.0 strikeouts per nine innings over the last three years as Mariano Rivera's setup man. In an era when more and more teams have entrusted their best reliever with closing duties, Robertson has the ratios to measure up. Don't hesitate to draft him as a top 12 reliever, despite his lack of experience in the role.

Buyer beware ... Mark Teixeira, first base

His right wrist surgically repaired and his spirits high after a long layoff, Teixeira is poised this year to pick up where he left off in 2012, some would have you believe. Maybe he will. Maybe he won't. But no matter where you fall on that spectrum, you shouldn't lose sight of what exactly that means. In 2012, his OPS dropped for the fifth straight year, settling at a .807 mark that wasn't too unlike what Darin Ruf delivered last season. He began to have trouble staying on the field, his batting average hovered in the .250 range for a third straight year, and his walk rate dipped to where it no longer made up for his shortcomings. Now, he's coming back from surgery to his wrist, which, like the shoulders and hips, doesn't regain its strength as quickly as it heals. So in Teixeira, you have a first baseman quite evidently on the decline whose latest injury is a threat to the one area where he still excels, hitting home runs. Yeah ... a late-round pick sounds about right.

Sleeper ... Michael Pineda, starting pitcher

2014 rotation/bullpen
Player Name Throws
1. CC Sabathia LHP
2. Masahiro Tanaka RHP
3. Hiroki Kuroda RHP
4. Ivan Nova RHP
5. Michael Pineda RHP
ALT David Phelps RHP
Bullpen Breakdown
1. David Robertson RHP
2. Shawn Kelley RHP
3. Matt Thornton LHP
4. Preston Claiborne RHP
5. Adam Warren RHP
It seems like ancient history now, but Pineda was the rookie pitcher who took the league by storm in 2011, earning a trip to the All-Star game with an overpowering arsenal and poise beyond his 22 years. Thanks to a torn labrum suffered in his first spring training with the Yankees the following year, he hasn't pitched in a major-league game since. That includes last year, even though he returned to make 10 minor-league starts, which led some to believe the Yankees didn't like what they saw. But the numbers suggest he was as overpowering as before, striking out more than a batter per inning with relatively low hit and walk rates. More likely, the Yankees didn't want to force the issue and add to his service time in what was shaping up to be a lost season. From the general manager on down, they seem all about him winning a rotation spot in 2014. He has shown he can still hit the mid-90s with his fastball, and his secondary stuff remains intact. For a late-round pick, the reward outweighs the risk.

Prospects Report

Catcher Gary Sanchez is the one prospect in the Yankees system who Fantasy owners can trust to become an impact player someday, but that's at least partially because of the position he plays. He has legitimate middle-of-the-order power but underwhelmed between high Class A and Double-A last year and is still a ways from breaking into the big leagues ... Mason Williams looked like a front-line outfield prospect at this time a year ago but then hit .245 with a .641 OPS in 478 at-bats between high Class A and Double-A. Tyler Austin's stock also plummeted, but at least in Williams' case, the tools are good enough for long-term keeper owners to hold out hope for a rebound ... Slade Heathcott has long been a tools-over-production prospect, but he's practically to Triple-A now with nothing to hang his hat on. Don't hold your breath on him contributing this year ... In terms of ceiling, second base Gosuke Katoh has some Fantasy appeal for his combination of power, speed and patience at a premium position, but at age 19, he's for dynasty leagues only.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Scott White at @CBSScottWhite .

  •  
 
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Jake Arrieta being watched by Cubs pitching coach
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(11:52 am ET) Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta is at Wrigley Field so pitching coach Chris Bosio can monitor his progress, according to MLB.com.

Arrieta is slated for another rehab start before he's ready to return, but the club wants to keep tabs on his progress. Arrieta was dealing with a shoulder issue during spring, and is working his way back.


Mark Teixeira expects to be back Sunday with Yankees
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(11:41 am ET) First baseman Mark Teixeira confirmed Friday his intention to end his minor league rehab stint and return to the Yankees on Sunday, the first day he's eligible.

Teixeira said he "couldn't be happier" with how he feels physically, per Newsday.


Ian Desmond owns up to defensive mistakes
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(11:35 am ET) Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond is owning up to his early defensive mistakes, according to The Washington Post

Desmond has already made seven errors in 17 games, but believes he can right the ship. "If I ever want to be the captain of this team – and I do – I have to be better than that," Desmond said. "I’ve been in some dark places defensively, and this is right there with them."

Desmond had similar issues early last season, but was able to rebound the rest of the season. He admitted that he's struggled defensively since spring training, and was routinely taking extra ground balls in order to get in a rhythm. 

Desmond is hitting .226 in 62 at-bats.


Thefts becoming harder to get for Mike Trout
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(11:22 am ET) It might fall under the category of nitpicking for arguably the most productive hitter in the game, but the dropoff in stolen bases for Mike Trout has become noticeable.

That number dropped from 49 in 2012 to 33 last season. He has just one in 15 games this year. One reason is the lack of opportunities. He has been on first base with second unoccupied just 10 times in 2014. Left-handers, who are generally tougher to run against, have been on the mound in six of those instances. The Angels led 11-1 in another.

Trout explained as well that he is receiving more attention. "Pitchers have been giving me a lot of different looks," he told the Orange County Register. "You don't want to run into outs, but we're going to stay aggressive for sure."


Jay Bruce remains in cleanup spot
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(11:12 am ET) Reds outfielder Jay Bruce will remain in the cleanup spot Friday against the Cubs.

Bruce has struggled to open the season, hitting just .152 in 46 at-bats. He was briefly moved down to fifth in the order earlier this week, but the move appeared to be temporary. Bruce returned to the fourth spot the following game, and, after a day off Thursday, he'll hit cleanup Friday.

Bruce will look to get things going against Cubs ace Jeff Samardzija.


Jason Kubel remains one of early-season surprises
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(11:05 am ET) Twins left fielder Jason Kubel could not have possibly kept up the pace he forged in the first week of the season, but has remained productive.

He was batting .462 with four doubles, one home run and six RBI through April 9. He is 5 for 24 since, but has three RBI in the last two games and his comeback after a lost, injury-plagued 2013 has been one of the most intriguing stories early in 2014. He has been placed in the middle of a Minnesota lineup that lacks power and owns a stat line of .340/.420/.521.

Kubel is just one year removed from a 90-RBI season with Arizona.


Prince Fielder failing to find groove in Texas
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(10:41 am ET) Every time Rangers newcomer and first baseman Prince Fielder has shown signs of emerging from his early-season slump, he falls back into a funk.

Fielder got two hits on April 4, but followed with an 0-for-12 stretch. He slammed three hits on April 8 before going 1 for 14 in the next four games. He had three hits in his next two games combined, but is 0 for 7 in the last two. He has just three extra-base hits this season and no home runs. His stat line reads .164/.271/.262.

Also unsettling for the Rangers is that Ian Kinsler, whom they traded to land their first baseman, is off to a sizzling start in Detroit with numbers that nearly double those of Fielder down the line. Kinsler's stat line is .327/.352/.519.


Carlos Beltran could be out after taking tumble Thursday
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(10:28 am ET) Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran might sideline himself for the Friday night game at Tampa Bay after taking a tumble over the wall at Tropicana Field on Thursday that resulted in a sore left shoulder and right wrist.

He told the Newark Star-Ledger he would determine his health Friday morning before informing Joe Girardi of his decision.

His loss would be felt. Despite taking an 0 for 5 in the opener of the four-game series, he is 11 for 30 with four home runs in the last eight games.


Justin Ruggiano gets a rest Friday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(10:20 am ET) Cubs outfielder Justin Ruggiano will get a rest Friday against the Reds.

Ryan Sweeney is set to take over in center, while Junior Lake will start in left. Ruggiano has been mostly utilized as a spot-starter most of the year due to Emilio Bonifacio's hot start. Ruggiano is hitting just .143 in 21 at-bats. 


John Farrell to contemplate lineup possibilities
by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(10:14 am ET) The impending return of Shane Victorino from the disabled list will provide John Farrell intriguing lineup options.

Victorino will almost certainly be plugged back into the second hole, but Farrell might place emerging Xander Bogaerts into the leadoff spot rather than move him down. That would result in Dustin Pedroia batting third.

That lineup would give the Red Sox a right-left-right configuration at the top of the order that Farrell covets, according to ESPN.

Bogaerts has earned consideration to take over the leadoff spot with an on-base percentage of .397.


 
 
 
Rankings