East Notes: Yankees, Rays, Loria

The impending retirements of Mariano Rivera and Andy Pettitte mark the end of an era for which Yankees fans should be grateful, Joel Sherman of the New York Post argues. The Yankees have been over .500 for 21 straight seasons, and have gone to the playoffs in 17 of the last 18 seasons. Their success, however, came with "impossible standards," with former owner George Steinbrenner imposing a "championship-or-humiliation doctrine." The Yankees' enormous payrolls competitors help them, Sherman admits, but other franchises (the Phillies, Angels and Blue Jays, for example) have spent lots on payroll and had far less success. And the Yankees' superb homegrown core of Derek Jeter, Rivera, Pettitte, Bernie Williams and Jorge Posada has been an enormous part of the Yankees' winning ways, too. Here are more notes from the East divisions.

  • The Rays will likely try to address first base, left field, designated hitter and their bench this winter, writes the Tampa Bay Times' Marc Topkin in a preview of the months to come. The Rays' decisions to pick up their 2014 options for middle infielders Ben Zobrist and Yunel Escobar will be "obvious," leaving the Rays set at those positions.
  • Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria isn't listening to president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest as much as he used to, because Beinfest isn't afraid to tell Loria when he doesn't like his player-acquisition ideas, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald writes. As an example, Jackson says that when Beinfest recently recommended that the Marlins promote second baseman Derek Dietrich, Loria refused, because he was angry at Dietrich's accusations of abusive behavior by ex-hitting coach coach Tino Martinez. But then assistant GM Dan Jennings made the same suggestion about promoting Dietrich, and Loria relented.


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