Three Reasons the Yankees Won’t Win the World Series This Year

The New York Yankees may have been victorious before, but they wont be as lucky this year.(David Pokress/Newsday/MCT)

David Pokress

The New York Yankees may have been victorious before, but they won’t be as lucky this year.(David Pokress/Newsday/MCT)


The New York Yankees may have been victorious before, but they won’t be as lucky this year.(David Pokress/Newsday/MCT)

Published: August 4, 2011

As the dog days of summer roll through August and into September, the picture of the Major League Baseball playoffs becomes a little bit more focused. The contenders spring into the foreground, while the teams at the bottom of the standings take their place in the background.

For the most part, this season has been the same old song—the Red Sox and the Yankees are competing for the division, the defending world champion San Francisco Giants are again leading the National League (NL) West and the Rangers are leading the American League (AL) West. However, there have been some surprises. The Cleveland Indians, usually near the bottom of the AL Central, find themselves in the thick of the playoff race, and even the Pittsburgh Pirates, a perennial last-place team, are contenders for a playoff spot.

Playoff races aside, there can only be one World Series champion. Who knows whom it will be until October, but don’t look for the New York Yankees to be standing atop the baseball world this fall. Here’s why:

1. Starting Pitching

There’s no question that pitching wins championships. If the other team doesn’t score runs because of pitching, your team can’t lose. But the Yankees pitching staff is not as strong as some of the other teams in the AL. Other than CC Sabathia, who has been magnificent this season, the Yankees pitchers haven’t been that great. AJ Burnett has been shaky and inconsistent while Phil Hughes just came off the disabled list and still hasn’t found his form. I find it uncomfortable to call them the Yankees’ number two and number three starters. On top of that, the other starting pitchers, Bartolo Colon and Freddy Garcia, are both in the twilights of their respective careers and I will be surprised if they hold up in the postseason. They will have to rely on their offense in order to win a game, which, admittedly, has been great, but will it be enough?

2. The Boston Red Sox

Speaking of offense, the Red Sox have one of the best in the major leagues. With their combination of speed and power, they will surely be a formidable threat come October. Jacoby Elisbury, the Sox centerfielder, is a great example of this deadly combination. He is in the top five in the AL in steals and he has 17 home runs to boot. Newly acquired Carl Crawford also has speed and power. Although he is having a down year, he has hit as many as 19 home runs and has stolen as many 60 bases in a single season.  Don’t forget about Boston’s other potent bats, either. Third baseman Kevin Youklis has 15 home runs at this point in the season, David Ortiz has 20 and Adrian Gonzalez has 18 to go along with the highest batting average in the majors as well as the highest total of runs batted in (RBI) in the major leagues. However, this offensive-minded team also has great pitching, which can carry them far. The will surely be a thorn in the Yankees’ side this postseason.

3. The National League

As I mentioned before, pitching wins championships, and the National League has some of the game’s best arms. The Philadelphia Phillies essentially have three aces on their pitching staff in Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels, and all three have experience against American League ball clubs. Cliff Lee almost singlehandedly eliminated the Yankees last October and Roy Halladay has an 8-3 record against the Yankees the last three seasons. Other teams, like the defending champion San Francisco Giants will pose a problem for opposing teams with flamethrowers Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain leading the pitching staff. Call me a pessimist, but if the Yankees make the World Series this year, it looks as though they are going to be defeated by NL pitching.

Before I close, I must mention that I am a Yankee fan and I have been for some time, but it doesn’t look like their 28th World Series title is in the cards this season. I believe the World Series will come down to Boston and San Francisco, but who knows? Maybe I’m wrong, but regardless, we’ll all know in October when one time rises above all the others and is named World Series Champion.