Injuries may slow down surging Yankees' momentum
As hot as their team has been, Yankee fans have a reason to be worried.
Yesterday, the Bombers lost their two top pitchers as CC Sabathia and Andy Pettitte -- major contributors to the team's 19-5 record the last month -- both went on the disabled list.
Sabathia strained a groin muscle in the Yankees' 6-5 Subway Series win over the Mets Sunday that manager Joe Girardi said would keep the lefthander out for two starts, while the 40-year-old Pettitte, who came out of retirement to bolster the starting rotation in May, left yesterday's game after being hit by a ground ball in the fifth inning. The team announced Pettitte's ankle would be placed in a boot and that he would require crutches -- but not surgery. He's expected to be out at least six weeks.
"It's frustrating because I've been feeling so good," Pettitte told reporters after the game. "But there's still a lot to be positive about right now. We're playing well; everybody's throwing the ball well and we've got guys that are going to step up and do a great job."
The absence of two of the Yankees' starting five threatens to upset the impressive groove the team has fallen into. Led by its starting pitching, the Bombers have improved their record from 21-21 on May 21 to an MLB-best 46-28 today.
The pair will be replaced in the Yankees' starting rotation, for now, by veteran Freddy Garcia and rookie Adam Warren, who was promoted from the minors to fill Sabathia's roster spot.
But no matter how the Yankees plan to replace Pettitte and Sabathia, their absence will be a big blow to the team, said Greg Cohen of the Yankees blog Sliding Into Home.
"No team can afford to lose two of their top starters without it hurting at least a little bit," Cohen said. "At the end of the day it's going to have to be a team-wide effort, but if there's one thing this team has shown us this year it's that they don't mind adversity and they have handled it well."