Throughout the season the CBS Sports MLB experts will bring you a weekly Batting Around roundtable breaking down pretty much anything. The latest news, a historical question, thoughts about the future of baseball, all sorts of stuff.. This week we're going to tackle two disappointing AL East rivals.
R.J. Anderson: I'll go with the Yankees. They looked like a far superior team on paper entering this season. Obviously it hasn't played out that way, but I think they've maintained their advantage in top-end talent. We all know that having Aaron Judge and Gerrit Cole in tow makes it easier to field a good team, even if it doesn't guarantee you anything. The Red Sox do have some promising young players on the rise, including prospects Roman Anthony and Marcelo Mayer, as well as an intriguing wild card to play this winter in filling their top executive spot. Maybe they'll hire someone who upscales quicker than I expect. In that case, fair enough.
Matt Snyder: The Yankees have a much better foundation with Cole and Judge, obviously, as R.J. said. I still believe Carlos Rodón can have a solid season in 2024 and they seem to have found something in Michael King. Beyond Judge on the position-playing side, there's Gleyber Torres and a bevy of promising youngsters who have already gotten their feet wet at the big-league level. Then there's obviously the offseason and I expect the Yankees to be aggressive, thanks to going backward from 99 wins to missing the playoffs. On the Red Sox side, they are shuffling the front office, generally have a mess of a pitching staff and the Rafael Devers-Alex Verdugo-Masataka Yoshida core isn't as good as the Yankees have. I don't really think this is all that close. The Yankees are the easy pick.
Dayn Perry: I'll say Yankees. In part that's because they already have the superstar foundation in place with Aaron Judge and Gerrit Cole. In part it's because they have an ownership group that appears to sort of care about winning, as opposed to the Sox's owners who don't appear to care at all about winning. This isn't to say Hal Steinbrenner is a good steward of the team -- he's not -- but he's better than John Henry is these days. I also think there's a sense of desperation in the Bronx that might prompt them to be more active this winter.
Mike Axisa: It's hard to say without knowing who the Red Sox will hire to replace Chaim Bloom. Will it be someone who puts the pedal to the floor and goes for it in 2024, or someone who continues Bloom's slower build up? The fact Bloom was fired suggests it will be the former. Even then, I still the Yankees are the better bet to reach the postseason first. As the others have noted, Cole and Judge are about as good a foundation as you can have in this sport, they have some very good complementary players (Anthony Rizzo, Gleyber Torres, etc.), and they're much better at building out a pitching staff 1-13. Few teams consistently build bullpens as well as New York and the Red Sox are not one of those few teams, or at least they weren't under Bloom. As poorly as things went for the Yankees this season, they're still poised to finish with a winning record, and you don't have to try too hard to see them making the 12-team postseason field next year.