Just another one of those games where the Yankees were trailing at the start of the 5th inning and they went on to lose the contest.
Actually, what was most interesting about this game was listening to John Flaherty and Al Leiter, on the YES coverage, go to town about how Phil Hughes’ 89-92 MPH fastball was straight with little movement, and, that, along with just a curve was not enough to retire big league batters on a consistent basis. I believe Leiter referred to Hughes’ fastball as being a ‘hittable speed.’ (The two also went on to talk about how Hughes needs to feature – or even just show – a slider or change-up on a more regular basis to be more effective.)
Actually, what Flaherty and Leiter were saying today ties right into David Cone’s point on Hughes the other day – that after the line-up sees him once, they pretty much have him sized up.
I know that many Yankees fans will want to blame Hughes’ game today on Chris Stewart – noting all the cross-ups, etc. But, for what it’s worth, Hughes crossed up Molina too during his third start of this season. Being that it’s two different catchers here and the same pitcher, it’s more likely that it’s the pitcher at fault. Either Hughes can’t keep up with the signs, he’s not concentrating out there, or he needs glasses.
In any event, back to the Flaherty and Leiter commentary, they’ve really set Hughes up for a fun week. (Probably for Brian Cashman and Joe Girardi too.) Expect to hear lots of talk and read lots of features over the next few days – debating if it makes sense or not to send Hughes down to Triple-A to refine and learn to use a third (and maybe fourth) pitch.
And, if Hank Stein was tuned into YES this evening, he may pick up on this as well.