Tuesday, February 15, 2011

JABA Has To EARN His Spot In Yankee Rotation...Lackey Lost His Lumps

NY Yankee GM Brian Cashman recently said that Jaba Chamberlain is NOT a lock to make the pinstriped bullpen. Here's Cashman...

“Anybody who has minor league options is not a lock for anything. Any player with options has to re-earn everything. You earn more or you earn less — New York or Scranton Triple-A. I fully expect Joba to be in our bullpen. If not, he would have worked his way out of it.”

We'll see. In Boston Red Sox comings and goings, John Lackey, who had a minimally OK year last season, worked hard this past off season and it shows. He's toned and about 15 pounds lighter. Lacks will be our number four guy in the rotation and that's just about where he should be. The Red Sox season depends on comeback years from both Lackey AND Josh Beckett and for the injury epidemic to stay the hell away. High hopes, I've got high hopes for 2011. Here's Red Sox manager Tito Francona...

“Boy, he looks good. Any time somebody steps into camp, whether they’re 22 or 32, and they look like they worked really hard, we’re thrilled. It’s not an easy thing to do. When you become a veteran guy, it’s not easy to change your body. He’s obviously spent a lot of time and hard work doing that. We hope that translates to the field. I can’t see how it’s going to hurt him. I feel good about this year and I’m kind of moving forward.”

Move forward John, move on up just like the Jeffersons. A great year from Lackey with his fellow rotation mates excelling right along with him will help the Boston Red Sox outdistance their AL East competitors. October baseball will follow. With the Yankees only having three starters (for now), I'd pick the talent-laden Tampa Bay Rays for second place and the wild card. Why not? They have power, they have starting pitching and they have a bullpen. Their defense is nothing to sneeze at, as is their coach, John Maddon, a guy I like and respect. Sure, they'll have to do it without Carl Crawford but Crawford saw the light and will play 81 plus games at Friendly Fenway. The Boston outfield defense should be great. Their pitchers are very happy about that.

Have a great Tuesday, click on this post's title for more on those Red Sox and as always and forever, BE WELL. I thank you for reading my daily ramble. As Led Zeppelin sang, RAMBLE ON. I'll see you soon.

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