Masahiro Tanaka has problems but the Yankees can still compete

The New York ace is out for at least a month, with speculation rife it could last much longer, but the Yankees’ season is far from lost

From the very start of the spring training, the prevailing thought around the New York Yankees was that their season hung on the threads of Masahiro Tanaka’s ulnar collateral ligaments. There were other pressing issues hanging around the team of course, but the question of whether or not the Yankees ace would be able to stay on the field and perform at a high level seemingly held the key to forecasting their 2015 season.

That made some sense, especially when you consider that Tanaka made 20 starts in 2014, when he was 13-5, with a 2.77 ERA and a 1.056 WHIP. Had the hurler stayed healthy and helped the Yankees win even half of the 12 starts he missed, New York would have been at 90 wins, one more than the Kansas City Royals, and two more than the Oakland Athletics, teams that reached the post-season via the American League Wild Card slots.

Tough news about Tanaka...guarantee you it started at our place when he pitched in 34 degree weather...recover quickly

Sorry for #Tanaka but I saw it coming. Too bad he had this setback. I wish him the best and a quick recovery

The truth is, if it’s partially torn, just a little bit torn, rehab and rest is the right way to go. In fact, you’d be crazy to do surgery on a UCL that’s just slightly torn.

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