Oh, how far we’ve come from the days of O’Neill and Rojas.
As much as the question of this evening seems to be (still) “What’s wrong with Randy Johnson?” perhaps it should now be “What’s wrong with Mo Rivera?”
Over the span of the last 15 days, Rivera has pitched in 8 games now. In those 8 games, he has thrown 8 innings – in which he has allowed 12 hits, 3 walks and only whiffed 2 batters.
That’s almost 2 base runners per inning pitched – and, if I’m doing my math right, only 2 punch-outs in 39 batters faced.
I know that the Yankees and YES-heads are saying that this is Mariano being rusty because of the lack of save chances so far this season – but, come on, how can you be rusty when you’ve come into games 8 times in the last 15 days? Something is wrong with Mo.
As far as Johnson, at this point, it’s just a shame that his name is “Randy Johnson.” The way he’s been pitching, if his name was “Jaret Wright” he would have been removed from the rotation by now. Heck, if his name was “Scott Proctor” and he was pitching this way, he would be in the minors by now.
It’s interesting, I’m reading Birth of a Dynasty now and I just came across a quote from Torre where he says (something like) “I manage by the game and not by the name” (where a reference was made to him having Charlie Hayes pinch hit for Wade Boggs, if I recall correctly).
I wish this were still true about Joe. Granted, you could never send “Randy Johnson” down to Columbus to work out his problems now – because he’s “Randy Johnson.” But, given that (in his last 7 starts) he’s allowed 31 runs in 36.2 innings pitched, it’s time either remove him from the rotation or put him on the Disabled List.
Let Ron Villone start in his place and make Johnson pitch mop-up to work out his issues. Or, disable him and send him to Tampa to work things out.
I just read that Johnson has allowed four runs or more in five straight starts for the first time in his major league career. Something is wrong. And, running him out there every five days doesn’t seem to be the answer. It’s time for Plan B.
Semi-related to all this, tonight’s news also tells us that Carl Pavano needs surgery to remove a bone chip above his right elbow. I have to wonder – did this chip just show up, or, was it hiding from Yankees doctors for the last 325 days? If it’s the latter, could it be possible that the same crack-staff of M.D.’s have missed something on Randy?
At the least, if they won’t move Johnson to the pen, get another MRI. Shoot, do a full body scan – and a head x-ray while you’re at it. And then get him on the D.L.
And, then they can move on to trying to fix Rivera.