Wow...we are already half through the season. The Yankees are leading the majors with the best record/winning percentage (50-31, .622) and lead the AL East over Tampa by 2.0 games and the Sox by 2.5 games.
The Yankees starting rotation is good shape. 3 of their 5 starters are already to 10 wins (CC, Andy, and Hughes), Vazquez has turned it around after a dismal April & May and is up to 7 wins, and has dropped his ERA by more than 2 runs over his last 7 starts. I take 14-15 wins from the #4 guy. AJ while looking lost for the month of June has seemingly turned the corner with the return of Dave Eiland.
The OF was the big concern going into the season and I think it has really turned out well. While Granderson may not be hitting for average or quite the power the Yankees expected yet (some were forecasting 40 HRs) Swisher has produced at the plate (.296, 13HR 47 RBI)and looks to be heading to the All-Star game, and Gardner has turned in an All-Star worthy first half as well (.314, 24 SB).
Tex and A-Rod still have quite found it, though Teixeira may finally be on his way, it's been Cano carrying the offense in an MVP type season. Francisco Cervelli has seen a great deal of time behind the plate due to numerous injuries to Posada, including the most recent one of taking a foul ball of the finger, and has done real well.
The only major area of concern is the bullpen. Joba is either real good or real bad (and bad is winning right with an ERA above 5.00), Robertson's ERA is nearly 6, Chan Ho Park and Gaudin's ERA are nearly 7, Aceves and Mitre are both on the DL. mo, as usual, is the only real option. He's 2-1, 19/21 in saves and an ERA just over 1.00.
The other minor concern is bench depth. The bench is not bad, it's just largely inexperienced. Guys like Pena, Russo, Curtis, and Huffman are there and have been serviceable they just don't strike fear into anyone. Thames is the only real experienced guy and he's still adjusting to the bench/PH role.
I give the Yankees a solid B+ right now at the mid point. Bullpen and bench are areas of improvement. Inconsistency in the rotation, and A-Rod and Tex not hitting like A-Rod and Tex are the only thing holding this team back from getting a solid A grade. If A-Rod and Tex were hitting the AL East may be over right now.
All is kind of quite on the Yankees trade front right now. I'm hearing rumors about bench depth..possible targets: Ty Wigington, Willie Bloomquist, and John McDonald. As much as I would like to add Cliff Lee to the rotation, there isn't a spot for him. The only thing I could see is if the Yankees wanted to solve their bullpen problems by getting Lee they would be able to put Hughes to the pen. I wouldn't like that move, but I could see the Yankees thinking that way. The Yankees did have scouts at Lee's last start though. Which is curious...do they really not know who Cliff Lee is, how he pitches, and what he's all about at this point. I mean they faced him a bunch of times when he with the Indians, they faced him twice in the World Series and most recently in inter-league play...if interested do they really need to scout him???