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Don't put too much stock in the results of a short series


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Personally, I would not read much into the Tigers' 4 game sweep of the Yankees, for either team. The Yankees won 7 more games than the Tigers during the regular season, playing in a tougher division. They played the Tigers 10 times in the regular season and beat them in 6. And it's not like the Tigers dominated the A's in the ALDS. They got an extra day of rest because of the way the playoffs were scheduled, and ran into the Yankees at a time when more than half their team was slumping. The Yankees lost Jeter in Game 1 and frankly, I think that totally deflated them. The Orioles took them to the final day of the regular season and I think they were just emotionally spent.

The pundits will have a field day drawing grand conclusions about how great the Tigers are and how the Yankees are on their last legs. But to me, it's mostly a matter of being in the right place at the right time for the Tigers. They finished their season with 13 games against the Twins and Royals and watched the White Sox go 4-9 in that final 13 games to hand them the division title, or they would not even have been a playoff team. Then, because of the fact that they knew they would be the no. 3 seed in Round 1 several days in advance, they were able to coast in, line up Verlander on a full week of rest in Game 1 of the ALDS (playing at home even though Oakland had the better record by far), and put Oakland in the position of needing a sweep on its home field to beat them, with a fully rested Verlander pitching Game 5. And, as I already said, they got an extra day before the ALCS started, too.

Don't get me wrong, the Tigers played great in this series, but I wouldn't draw any grand conclusions about them or the Yankees for next year based on this series.

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Joel Sherman thinks we should.


There is only wreckage now, the detritus of having every weakness exposed, of falling apart so completely as to make it difficult to see the outline of a major league team, much less the New York Yankees.

Over the coming days and weeks, Yankees management must assess the meaning of that wreckage, of a humiliating ALCS sweep by the Tigers.

Normally, Brian Cashman’s front office would favor the big picture: That over six months – with all their offensive issues – the Yankees did finish with the second-most runs in the majors, the best record in the AL and a Division Series victory. Cashman has always valued assembling a roster to attain the posteason and then hope his club was healthy and playing well enough to do something come October.

But it would be a mistake to dismiss these playoffs, specifically the past four games, as small-sample irrelevance. It was instead a microcosm of their problems made clearer under the microscope of the playoffs.

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If they really want to, sure. But they've been pretty adamant about keeping their young pitching prospects *this time*.

I thought they all had Tommy John Surgery or SLAP tear surgery. Do they have any young pitching that would be trade-able?

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