Yankee fans got an early Christmas present on Tuesday with the announcement that their team had once again signed a marque player in the form of the powerful, switch-hitting first baseman Mark Teixeira. While the normal vocalization about the audacity of the Yankees' spending is already being hollered across the sphere of the sports world, the most shocking aspect of this acquisition is truly the bewilderment Red Sox fans must feel at watching their Grinch-like front office let another top tier player slip to their hated rivals over a few million dollars, leaving "The Nation" with a large, proverbial, lump of coal in their Red Stockings for Christmas.
The Yankees, on the other hand, will enjoy a holiday season off affluence due to an off season of brilliance. With large sums of money coming off the books and revenue projections from their new stadium looking strong, the Yankees ownership once again invested wisely in their on the field product, snatching the two pitchers of the highest quality available, along with a first baseman tailor made for Yankee Stadium, despite the "best efforts" of their New England adversaries. The team's greatest deficiencies over the past few seasons have now been thoroughly addressed and — to state the obvious --the Yankees are easily the team to beat in the East.
While the Yanks are coming off of a disappointing 89-win campaign and their first post-season at home since 1994, their revamped rotation of A.J. Burnett, CC Sabathia, Chien-Ming Wang, Joba Chamberlain, and a player to be named later, is easily 10-15 wins better than the squad that saw the likes of Darrell Rasner, Ian Kennedy, Phil Hughes, and Sidney Ponson taking regular trips to the mound.
Throw Teixeira's power numbers into the mix, along with a more stable everyday lineup that will include Xavier Nady for a full season, a healthy Jorge Posada and Hideki Matsui, and Nick Swisher with his versatility and consistent ability to get on base, and the Yankees will easily improve on the 789 runs they scored last season, pushing their win total well within the normal parameters for a post season birth.