New York Yankees added much needed pitching this season with key deals

Last year, the Yankees were still the best in baseball despite having such a mixed rotation. This has been the story for the Yankees in the past few years since they have won the World Series in 2009.

Let’s be honest Yankee fans, you cannot win baseball games when your #4 and #5 starters are Freddy Garcia and Bartolo Colon. While they made great stories and both players produced, it doesn’t lead to postseason success.

So the Yankees made two significant deals in their big spending week. The New York Yankees traded top prospect Jesus Montero and right-handed pitcher Hector Noesi to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for phenom pitcher Michael Pineda and righty Jose Campos.

The Yankees receive the 22-year-old Pineda after he went 9-10 with a 3.74 ERA for the Mariners as a rookie last year.

After an up-and-down year in Triple-A, Montero came up to the majors and showed off his electric bat. In 18 games, he hit .328 with four home runs and 28 RBIs. He was expected to be the Yankees designated hitter this season.

This was the right move because the Yankees needed to get better in the rotation and Pineda has PLUS stuff and he is definitely the right pitcher the Yankees needed in the rotation. With Lefty Sabathia and Righty Pineda both throwing 95+ at the top of your rotation, it scares a lot of batters. This move makes the Yankees better in 2012 and for future seasons regardless of letting go of Montero.

He was a guy who had potential and tons of power but where were the Yankees going to play him? DH spot? Catcher? He had no clear-cut decision. Now he goes to the already young Mariners who are looking for some offense and Montero can do that especially playing the DH position. He can be put in the middle of the lineup with Smoak, Ackley, Wells, and Ichiro.

He will get a chance to play everyday on a young squad and will not be played around like the Yankees did for the past few seasons. Yankee fans should thank the organization for giving him a chance somewhere else. Otherwise, he would have been stuck in Yankees purgatory for many years.

The Yankees didn’t stop there. They added former Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hiroki Kuroda to their rotation.

Kuroda went 13-16 in 2011, but that was more a reflection of the Dodgers’ awful run support than his performance. He posted a career-best 3.07 ERA and 161 strikeouts in 202 innings. He made $12.5 million last season and has a 3.45 ERA with a win-loss record of 41-46 in four years.

This deal gives the Yankees depth and now a rotation that fills out to be Sabathia, Pineda, Hughes, Kuroda, and Nova. Freddy Garcia and A.J. Burnett will be the 6th and 7th starter on the team in case of injury or emergency.

This depth in the rotation gives the Yankees stability that they can win 97 games but also can be a consistent AL East winner every single year. So yes they did give up offense in Montero but how did they lose to the Tigers last year in the Playoffs? Pitching.

The games of baseball always comes down to the guy on the mound. If the starter cannot get you into the 7th or 8th inning, you won’t be able to hear “Enter the Sandman” as much as you want to on a daily basis. The Yankees made great moves and you will see the improvement this season.

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