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posted: 4/7/2013 4:40 AM

Don't write off the Yankees

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Don't write off the Yankees

March 9's sports section carried a wire story describing the plight of the New York Yankees as injuries to key players mount. White Sox and other American League teams are probably jumping for joy.

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However, Yankee haters had better beware.

The Yankee Mystique is indeed alive and kicking, so, don't write the Bronx Bombers off in 2013.

As the Yanks battle a host of player injuries, I'm reminded of 1949 when the Yanks opened the season with a questionable manager and several key players including Joe DiMaggio out of the lineup for big chunks of the season.

That questionable manager, Casey Stengel, orchestrated over 75 lineup changes with his unusual -- for the time -- platooning strategies. Despite DiMaggio, Tommy Henrich, Charley Keller and others missing parts or the whole year, the Yanks won the American League pennant and the World Series Dodgers, beginning a succession of pennants and World Series won under Stengel.

Today's Yankee Manager Joe Girardi isn't as eccentric as Stengel, but he's smart and inventive. As he waits for Granderson, Teixiera, Rodriguez, Sabbathia and Jeter to get healthy, he's smart and inventive enough to get this club into the playoffs. Don't bet against the Yankees this year.

Dean Dranias

Aurora

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