Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Postseason Roster is Here

The Yankees announced their postseason roster for the American League Divisional Series. My preferred roster included 12 pitchers and 13 positional players. Joe Torre decided to take Bronson Sardinha as a fifth bench player who will serve as the pinch-running option, and consequently decided on 11 pitchers.

The roster:

So the Yankees bullpen will lack a LOOGY, and quite frankly, Villone is not a lefthanded specialist in the first place. The Bull Dog from Bergen was a good middle reliever for Seattle, and has been a serviceable long-reliever for New York. The Yankees coaching staff were smart in recognizing that you do not have to take a southpaw if a righty can do an equal or better job.

I am probably among the minority, but I think that the inclusion of Jose Veras is the right move. His plus stuff, a 93-96 mph heater along with a solid power-curve, pushed him past other options, and rightly so. Veras has a lot to prove, but if he can avoid walks I have some unjustified belief that he can be a valuable piece out of the pen.

Wisely, Torre also chose Ross Ohlendorf over Edwar Ramirez, Ron Villone and Chris Britton. Ramirez showed too many weaknesses down the stretch, though an improved command of his fastball could result in an extended career with New York. It seems probable that Britton will become a fixture in the 2008 bullpen, but the Big Boy from Baltimore needs to work on his armstrength.

While with Baltimore, I vividly remember Britton flashing a plus fastball 91-94 mph with a tough low 80s mph slidepiece. His fastball in 2007 was league average, hovering between 88-91 and the slider was 77-79 mph. That power aspect to his pitching didn't just get up and walk away, so his mechanics could be to blame. Whatever the case, next season might see a new and improved version of Britt.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I tend to agree, would have been better with 12 pitchers.
The top 3 starters better go at least 6-7 innings.