This might have been a championship-level lineup a few years ago, when Jeter still had his speed, Abreu and Ivan Rodriguez were still .300 hitters with power, and Sexson could be counted on for 30 to 40 home runs a year. Now it represents only the compromises that injuries and a lack of vital youth can force on a team. Worse, it's not even the best lineup the Yankees can play.
The lineup represents Girardi's worst quality. An affable and intelligent manager, Girardi can be headstrong in his choices, sticking to his guns in the face of evidence that his tactics aren't working. This can be seen clearly in his decision to push Damaso Marte into a second inning of work twice in one week, resulting in losses both times. That's just two games. His wrongheaded embrace of platooning provides a more protracted example of a decision that hasn't paid off. For all his machinations, the Yankees remain a game under .500 when a left-hander starts against them.