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Off Season Report Card

Mark Feinsand of gives the Yanks an "8" for their off season report card:

What looked like a slow hot stove season for the Yankees turned out to be rather busy, as New York's signing of Damon grabbed headlines during the holidays.

In additon to Damon, New York returns a lineup chock full of All-Stars, so it wasn't necessary to go out and sign a big slugger. Once Matsui inked a four-year, $52 million deal in mid-November, Cashman was able to turn his attention to the bullpen and center field.

The bullpen was bolstered by the signings of Dotel, Farnsworth and Myers, as well as the deal for Villone, while center field remains an open-ended search. Damon gives the Yankees a strong presence in center, as well as a productive leadoff hitter.

On a scale of 1-10, they get an 8. Adding Damon was big, and taking him away from Boston was even bigger.

Arrivals: CF Johnny Damon (free agent), RHP Octavio Dotel (free agent), RHP Kyle Farnsworth (free agent), LHP Mike Myers (free agent), LHP Ron Villone (trade), C Kelly Stinnett (free agent)

Departures: RHP Tom Gordon, 1B Tino Martinez, C John Flaherty, OF/DH Ruben Sierra, RHP Kevin Brown, LHP Alan Embree, 2B/OF Tony Womack, OF Matt Lawton, INF Rey Sanchez, INF Mark Bellhorn, RHP Felix Rodriguez.

I'd say he's pretty much on target. There are a lot of questions to be answered on Farnsworth, but we know what we had with Gordon,(choker)so I'm looking forward to seeing what Kyle can do. The Yanks added two lefties that can actually pitch, but the kicker is Dotel. He was worth the gamble because as a set up man-he was almost unhittable in Houston. He does not have the makeup for a closer and if Rivera goes down for any length of time (not to be a jinx) the Yanks are covered with Farnsworth. With Damon taking the lead at the top of the lineup, I'd say this is the year we get back to the series.