Jeter to Tanaka- “You’re a major addition!”
Yankees great Derek Jeter stated his approval of the recent addition to the team when he referred to Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka as a great new member. Jeter told reporters he’s excited about the addition of Tanaka, who will benefit the entire team with his talents pitching this spring.
After going 24-0 last season for the Japanese Pacific League Tanaka agreed to a 7-year contract for $155 million to play for New York. And surely his efforts will be greatly utilized by the team this spring season.
Tanaka comes to the Yankees with a 2.30 ERA and will be greatly accepted by the staff and players for the talents he displayed during his time playing in Japan. As a new member of the team, Tanaka’s acceptance by teammates is huge, and will benefit him greatly by reducing the amount of stress he faces, even if by just a little.
After some serious digging (because I’m not exactly familiar with this guy quite yet) I found out that Tanaka is expected to provide New York with an impressive boost in their pitching rotation in spring 2014 and that acceptance from the team’s captain may be just the approval needed to make Tanaka feel right at home. Such positive words from someone the entire team looks up to and calls captain can only mean a positive outlook on what may be a great make-up season for the Bronx Bombers, who have faced defeat too many times for their liking in the past two years. And as a fan, it’s an addition I’m excited to see change the game and hopefully bring in some big wins for the Yanks.
Jeter went on to state that the Yankees actively pursue new players and recruits throughout the course of the year and are willing to spend money and do whatever else might be necessary to make the team better however they can.
This kind of management may sound costly, but at the end of the day when the team is playing their best because the managers and staff are handling everything off the field, it’s worth the time, energy and money spent to pamper these boys. Besides, between shaping their beards, taking batting practice and hitting bombs, the team doesn’t have enough free time to stress over what’s to come.
Jeter also said that that commitment to quality and success gives the players more of a sense of ease while playing for New York and puts less stress on them outside of playing the great American game. Having ownership take complete control of the business side allows the players to focus on healing wounds and fine tuning skills throughout the offseason to perform at their highest capacity when season rolls around.
Last spring, the 39-year-old Jeter was only able to participate in 17 games due to injuries he sustained. His performance was slowed due to a 2012 ankle break and some calf and right quadriceps injuries, however this offseason he has been active during practice and workouts and expects to remain active until otherwise advised. Which is good news for the team and fans, as we all know Jeter is a master of the game, and has led the Yankees to quite a few successful seasons. Jeter completed his first week of on-field work where he spent time hitting off a tee in the batting cages and fielding ground balls.
The Yankees past two seasons were the first in 19 years without a playoff appearance, which has led the team to many roster changes. Offseason deals made with Catcher Brian McCann and Outfielders Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran are all expected to prove great benefits for the Yanks as they approach the upcoming season. McCann signed for 5 years expecting $85 million while Ellsbury accepted a 7-year offer for $153 million. Beltran agreed to sign for 3 years for $45 million. If the newbies are able to prove themselves and provide New York with the change they need the playoffs just might be a realistic expectation this summer.
Every addition is expected to be positive, after all that’s why they get scouted…right? But what looks good on paper doesn’t always look good in action so keep your eyes open and be ready for what may prove to be the best season in a while.