About three weeks into the Major League regular season, what may very well be the MLB’s "best division" has had one heck of a roller-coaster-type start. The Baltimore Orioles started off the season hot, but after a 6-1 start they are in the midst of an eight-game losing streak and have fallen to a 6-9 record. The Boston Red Sox, who were widely believed to be World Series contenders after signing Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez, began their season with only one win in their first eight games. It is possible that the Red Sox are working out their issues as they have won three straight games coming out of the weekend. Despite the issues these two clubs have had, there is one other AL East powerhouse that might have some problems even though they have a winning record. To find out who, hit the jump!
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pitching problems for the Yanks
Now that the numbers have been thrown out there, it's time to make some sense of how this pitching mess could effect the New York Yankees. Often times when talking baseball we (the average fan) tend to break down the game into three categories: "Starting Pitching," "Bullpen," and "Offense." It is easy to see a teams strengths and weaknesses individually, but it's the way they all interact that could create a massive "snowball" effect for New York. With the tail end of the starting rotation performing quite a few strokes over par, it has been the bullpen that Yankees Manager Joe Girardi has depended so greatly on. Girardi has been forced to use his 8th inning man Rafael Soriano seven times in only 14 games. The constant use of Soriano could be the cause for his latest struggle against Texas, where he gave up two earned runs in route to another nail biting victory for the Yanks. Another highly-used reliever for the Yankees has been veteran closer Mariano Rivera. Rivera has saved seven out of the nine wins for New York this season. Even though the skipper has called for his closer many times this year, Rivera continues to defy age as he is perfect in save attempts and has yet to give up a run.
All-in-all, the Yankees have managed to contend in the American League with a decent bullpen and an offense full of sluggers. It will be important for the Yankees to correct their starting pitching woes quickly. If they fail to do so, the Yankees bullpen that has held this heavy load early, is likely to collapse sooner rather than later.