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New York Yankees Roster Report 2008-10-29


New York Yankees Roster Report 2008-10-29
The Yankees finished a disappointing year in which they snapped a string of 13 straight playoff appearances. To return to the playoffs next year, they will need to walk a delicate line of continuing their youth movement while adding key veterans.

BIGGEST NEEDS: Rotation, rotation, rotation. As it was this season, the Yankees' rotation is full of question marks. They will certainly pursue free agents C.C. Sabathia and A.J. Burnett, but Sabathia reportedly would not want to come to New York. They need a healthy Chien-Ming Wang, a decision on Joba Chamberlain's role and a return by at least one of the veteran duo of Mike Mussina and Andy Pettitte. The Yankees also will need help at first base and possibly the corner-outfield spots.

FREE AGENTS: RF Bobby Abreu, RHP Mike Mussina, LHP Andy Pettitte, 1B Jason Giambi.

The Yankees will likely let Giambi go as they attempt to get younger and more athletic. Mussina could retire, but the Yankees will need him and/or Pettitte to return and help fill a role in the rotation. Abreu will be a tough decision; the Yankees need to clear an outfield crowded with veterans.

ARBITRATION-ELIGIBLE: RHP Brian Bruney, INF Wilson Betemit, RHP Chien-Ming Wang, CF Melky Cabrera, RF Xavier Nady.

Bruney proved himself valuable in the bullpen, Nady provided needed pop and Wang will need to play a pivotal role again. Cabrera could be the odd man out -- his status dropped dramatically this year. Betemit likely won't be asked back.

IN LIMBO: Cabrera could be trade bait, though his value would be low. RHP Ian Kennedy was someone the Yankees wouldn't part with last season, but they might be more willing to deal him this year, though his value has dropped as well.

MEDICAL WATCH:

RHP Mariano Rivera had minor arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder in October, but he is expected to be all right by spring training.

C Jorge Posada had surgery on his right shoulder on July 30, and the Yankees hope he'll be able to start next season on time.

DH Hideki Matsui had surgery on his left knee in September. He is expected to be ready to go by next spring.

LHP Andy Pettitte missed his last start of the season because of a sore left shoulder and will have to decide whether he wants to pitch next year or retire.

RHP Chien-Ming Wang missed the last 2 1/2 months of the season because of a ligament sprain in his right foot. He had his cast removed on July 29. On Oct. 17, he threw off a mound for the first time since the injury.


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: October 29, 2008

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