(Courtesy of the AP)
The Yankee outfield never came close to reaching its full potential last season due mainly to the injuries suffered by Curtis Granderson. That being the case, even a healthy Granderson wouldn't have been enough to make the outfield truly a strength. The projected starting outfield had become very rigid in its individual skill sets. C-Grand hit for power and got on base but didn't hit for average and had no defensive value. Gardner got on base and was a plus-plus defender but hit for very little power. Ichiro was a plus defender with good speed but didn't get on base or hit for enough average or power to make the most out of it.
2 of those 3 starters from last year will no longer be a part of the starting picture in 2014. As part of the offseason makeover, the Yankees added more well-rounded players to center and right field and shifted the newly-extended Gardner back to left field, where he's had the most success in the past. There are still some things that need to be ironed out with respect to this new outfield alignment, but collectively they should be much better and much more balanced in their overall offensive and defensive makeup than they were last season.