Originally written on The Sports Post  |  Last updated 11/14/14
The Yankees seem to be getting a little long in the tooth. (Photo credit) Even when the Yankees lose, they win. They lost the best shortstop of all time to the 60-day disabled list at the beginning of the season. They lost one of the best hitting infielders of all time to the 60-day disabled list at the beginning of the season. They lost one of their best power hitters to the 15-day disabled list on May 29. They lost the future ace of their pitching staff to the 60-day disabled list at the beginning of the season. And they just recently got back their power hitting first baseman from the disabled list. So, if you weren’t paying any attention to the first paragraph: the Yankees have lost Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Curtis Granderson, Michael Pineda, and Mark Teixeira to the disabled list at some point this season. And yet, they have continued to win like only the Yankees can. If I asked the average baseball fan which team Chris Stewart, Jayson Nix, and Travis Hafner were getting significant playing time on, I would bet that it would take them some time to figure it out. Has that ever been true for any player dressed in pinstripes? The Yankees usually sign players with the biggest names. Therefore, we usually know which team they are on. But this season, due to the multitude of injuries to their stars, New York was forced to follow the small market team path and sign undervalued veterans for cheap. This Yankees team full of misfits has somehow managed to not only maintain contention in one of the best divisions in baseball, but they are currently in second place, not far behind the Red Sox. And after looking at the numbers, I’m still not quite sure how they are doing it. Let’s take a look at their lineup and batting averages for the June 9 game against the Mariners, which they won 2-1. Brett Gardner: .284 Robinson Cano: .272 Mark Teixeira: .167 Travis Hafner: .242 Vernon Wells: .238 Ichiro Suzuki: .259 Jayson Nix: .256 Reid Brignac: .208 Chris Stewart: .276 That should give you a pretty good idea that the New York offense is nothing to be frightened by. How can the second best team in the A.L. East not have one starter hit over .300? This mystery can only have one explanation: otherworldly pitching. The Yankees are ranked in the top-10 in wins, losses, ERA, strikeouts, WHIP, and even saves. The rotation, headed by one of the most consistent aces of our time, C.C. Sabathia, has been significant to the Yankees’ success. The three ageless wonders, Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, and Andy Pettitte at the top of the rotation are 17-12 combined this season and have set the tone for the entire rotation. Phil Hughes and David Phelps have been solid complementary pieces to the rotation, but have been a bit inconsistent this season. But even the ace of this staff, Sabathia, has had his share of poor moments this season. He has given up four or more earned runs in six of his 14 starts this season. Because of that, his ERA has boomed to 4.07, which is higher than the past nine seasons. It really makes you wonder how the Yankees are still winning even when their ace has been shaky at times.  But what makes this team so special is that all their starters need to do is pitch six innings with a lead. Because, when they take a step off of the mound with a lead in the game, everyone watching knows the game is all but over. From Boone Logan to David Robertson to Mariano Rivera, offenses have not had much of a chance to claw back into games against these guys. And it should be of no surprise that Rivera is dominating again. With 23 saves in 24 opportunities, it makes you wonder whether Mo will actually retire at the end of the season like he has said. Health permitting, how can someone so effective turn down all that money? The 2013 New York Yankees are another case of how important pitching is, but the real question is how long can they get by without some help from the offense? Will the offensive woes end once they get back some of their injured stars? Mark Teixeira has not done much in the short time he has been back and there are definitely questions about how Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez, who have been inconsistent in their elder years, will do when inserted back into the lineup. The Yankees do play in a hitter-friendly ballpark, but that logic can go both ways, helping both teams. It's hard to see the Yankees’ aging pitching staff maintaining its current numbers throughout the season, and at the same time, I don’t foresee the team's offensive numbers getting significantly better even when their starters return. According to ESPN, the Yankees are the oldest team in the MLB with an average age of 31. It is hard to envision them succeeding over the course of the entire season. Injuries will continue to affect this team, and by August they will likely be forgotten in the playoff race. New York has been wildly impressive in the first 10 weeks of this season. But, when a team relies too heavily on one aspect of the game, it is difficult for them to thrive for the entre season, especially when their most important players are either in the tail-end of or past their primes. By: Matt Levine Twitter: @Matt_TFJ
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Frozen Four: Providence earns first bid since 1985

Report: Discussions to bring NFL team to L.A. are progressing

Report: Chris Mullin expected to take St. John's job

Michigan State beats Louisville, punches Final Four ticket

Ex-NHL player viciously attacks opponent before game

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Rick Barnes a possibility for Tennessee coaching job?

Report: NFL looking into Bill Belichick's camera ideas

Saints CB Brian Dixon arrested in Miami

CC Sabathia goes off about spring training stats

Kentucky remains unbeaten after thrilling win over ND

Alabama DT arrested on domestic violence charges again

Adam Morrison trolled fan who made JJ Redick comment

Jim Harbaugh finished fourth in student government election

WATCH: Notre Dame gets warm reception upon return home

WATCH: Kris Letang hospitalized after hit

Aaron Rodgers, sports writer get into it over on-court access

Sam Dekker's hot shooting sends Wisconsin to Final Four

Jim McElwain complains about Florida roster

Mark Few: I put Coach K up there with John Wooden

WATCH: Enes Kanter embraces boos in return to Utah

Mariners prospect dies from boat accident injuries

T.J. Ford sends heartfelt tweet about Rick Barnes

Bruins coach suits up as backup goalie

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Report: Chris Mullin to take St. John's job

Report: NFL looking into more cameras

CC Sabathia goes off about spring stats

John Fox: Cutler will have to earn job

Texas eyeing Shaka Smart, Gregg Marshall?

WATCH: Brady jumps off cliff in Costa Rica

WATCH: 2 Chainz beats Nique in HORSE

Elite Eight preview and predictions: Notre Dame vs. Kentucky

Elite Eight preview and predictions: Arizona vs. Wisconsin

NFL owners chose cost over game integrity

Be careful how loudly you cheer on Mo'ne Davis' olive branch

James Harden and the collective consciousness

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.