• The Javier Vazquez Nightmare

    Posted by on August 21st, 2010 · Comments (3)

    Bob Klapisch shares the following today –

    Javier Vazquez spoke in long, seamless sentences, sticking to his what-me-panic script after a horrific outing against the Mariners on Saturday. But the longer he spent at his locker, the more obvious it became that neither Vazquez nor the Yankees have any idea what’s happened to what was once an elite right-hander.

    Vazquez was lifted after three innings, having given up four runs on eight hits. Vazquez faced 18 batters in three innings, 12 of whom hit the ball hard — including three home runs. He continues to live in a pitcher’s purgatory, stripped of his fastball, unable to locate his secondary stuff, glancing over his shoulder after every hit, as if Joe Girardi was on his way from the dugout.

    “Man, I wish I knew. We’ve been talking about this for a long time,” Vazquez said wearily when asked for an explanation.

    “I’m not locating; I’m not getting ahead; I’m behind in every count,” Vazquez said. He’s right, of course, but there’s more. Vazquez’s bad counts are attributable to his fear of throwing strikes, which stems from fear of contact. That’s what happens to pitchers who’ve lost their confidence.

    While no one has suggested Vazquez is hurt, his trendclearly is disturbing club officials. It’s not just the fastball that’s shrunk from its peak 92 mph to 88 mph a month ago to its current lower 80s. It’s the way hitters are loading up against him.

    Reading this, all I can think about is all those who wrote, before the start of this season, about how this is not the “Javier Vazquez of 2004″ we were going to see this season; and, about how many, during this season, have opined about Vazquez being a “representative 4th starter” and exactly filling the expectations of what the Yankees had for him this season.

    Well, to me, if sure looks like Javy Vazquez, this season, is the same turkey who was pitching for the Yankees in ’04. And, if this is what you expect from your 4th starter in a big league rotation, then I have a used “Brian Moehler” that I would like to sell you…

    Comments on The Javier Vazquez Nightmare

    1. Raf
      August 21st, 2010 | 11:33 pm

      Personally, I’d like to know what happened to his velocity. He looks like Livan Hernandez out there.

    2. August 22nd, 2010 | 12:17 am

      “I ams what I ams”, as Popeye would say. Vazquez was a .500 pitcher when he arrived in 2004, 64-68. When he left he was a .500 pitcher, 78-78, when he returned he was a .500 pitcher, 142-139, and now five months into the season he still is a .500 pitcher, 151-148. We’re 299 decisions into Javy’s career, I’m noting a pattern here. Klapisch writes, “neither Vazquez nor the Yankees have any idea what’s happened to what was once an elite right-hander”, “elite”, what’s that word doing there? Someone needs to look that word up in their Funk & Wagnalls.

      I thought Javy projected out between 10-9 and 12-10, so to me he is more or less on course. If Girardi is smart he will avoid pitching Javy in the postseason, and if Cashman is wise, he will deal him in the offseason. Although brutal in all postseason appearances, Javy is 1-1, and staying with the .500 theme, in 625 career plate appearances his OPS is .486.

      Steve Karsay, Kyle Farnsworth, Chris Hammond, Jaret Wright, Javy Vazquez, next time Cashman goes turkey shopping instead of going to Atlanta, he should try Shoprite instead.

    3. Raf
      August 22nd, 2010 | 3:49 am

      That shot by Branyan was impressive

      Bob Klapisch wrote:

      Vazquez’s bad counts are attributable to his fear of throwing strikes, which stems from fear of contact. That’s what happens to pitchers who’ve lost their confidence.

      Project much?

      Joseph Maloney wrote:

      if Cashman is wise, he will deal him in the offseason.

      Vazquez`is a FA after the season.

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