It's not easy in the offseason to predict the Opening Day roster, let alone starting lineups. There's always potential deals to be made, possible free agent signings, expected DFAs (I'm looking at you, Vernon Wells), and arbitration hearings (Hi there, A-Rod). But, as always, it's never too early to start talking about these things, because let's be honest, Christmastime is not exactly a busy time in the offseason.
And so, without further ado, my 2014 Yankees Opening Day lineup:(assuming current roster)
LF Brett Gardner (L)
SS Derek Jeter (R)
CF Jacoby Ellsbury (L)
RF Carlos Beltran (S)
1B Mark Teixeira (S)
C Brian McCann (L)
DH Alfonso Soriano (R)
3B Kelly Johnson (L)
2B Brian Roberts (R)
Still, by no means is this the definite lineup...Girardi could conceivably hit Ellsbury leadoff and Gardner ninth and nobody would blink an eye. Still, though, I think this is probably what he's going to go with, given Ellsbury's power potential, Gardner's skill as a leadoff hitter, and Derek Jeter having to hit 2nd because he's, well, Derek Jeter.
Which brings us to another issue - as written here on bleacher report, Derek Jeter does not help the team by batting second. In fact, he'd better help the team hitting 7th, in front of Johnson and Roberts, helping as a kind of "leadoff hitter" in the bottom third of the order. This having Gardner and Ellsbury back-to-back would make the double steal an interesting - and possibly common - tactic for the Yankees, and their speed would definitely cause trouble for opposing teams.
Still, I'm not sure if Girardi would do that here, given Jeter's respect around the league and the potential public backlash, as well as his desire to alternate lefties and righties (a tactic I support, but not at other things' expense, such as this). In any case, we won't have any indication until spring training how the Binder prepares on organizing the lineup, so I'm going to pose the question to the Pinstripe Alley community - where do you think Jeter should hit?