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Bronx Tales

Bronx Tales: With Derek Jeter down, what’s next for the Yankees?

KOBEsh: Derek Jeter out until at least after the All-Star break, if not longer. Vin, where do the Bombers go from here?
Vin: Not much of the following will actually answer your question as posed. This is for two reasons, one simple and one so complex even I can’t fully understand it.
The simple reason is that it’s not a very hard question to answer. The Captain was supposed to be back by Opening Day. Then he was estimated to be back by sometime in early to mid April. Then people began to accept that he wouldn’t be back until May. Now all we know is the vague and terrifying “sometime after the All-Star break.” But the “next step” for the Yanks never changed with these shifting timetables: Eduardo Nunez needs to fill in for Jeter as the everyday shortstop, just as he did when Jeter went on the DL close to the pinnacle of his 3,000 hit chase in 2011. The Yanks don’t have any other options really, either in house or elsewhere, besides Jayson Nix (and he’ll only get a chance if Nunez proves too error prone with the glove, which I’m less worried about because he’s been solid so far this year).
Nunez has always shown potential with the glove, just not consistency, so it’s not as if he can’t do it. And it seems that being at the same position everyday and knowing he will be there indefinitely is helping him to relax. Bottom line: quality major league shortstops are rare. The Yankees are fortunate to have Nunez, who’s struggled at the plate so far this year but whose track record leads one to believe he can produce as an average major league SS, as the next step.
The complex reason is that my usual flourish of wordiness above aside, I don’t really care what the Yankees next step is without Jeter. That was the thing I was worried about second most when I got the news Jeter was going back to see his ankle specialist on Thursday, but in a way that the thing you worry about second most when your house burns down is not having a suit for work the next day.
The thing I was preoccupied with is what this means for Derek Jeter’s career going forward.… Read more...