• Cashman To Blame For The Sorry State Of The Yankees Starting Rotation?

    Posted by on August 28th, 2010 · Comments (11)

    Joe Girardi is looking at his starting pitcher options. Via Chad Jennings -

    This was the question asked of Joe Girardi after tonight’s game: I know you don’t have a lot of options, but are you still committed to (A.J. Burnett) as a starting pitcher?

    This was the answer: “I’ve said we’ll evaluate after this weekend where we are and what we need to do.”

    Girardi said more or less the same thing earlier this week, but those comments seemed directed at the rookie Ivan Nova and the recently demoted Javier Vazquez. They might have been directed at Phil Hughes and his innings limit, but they certainly didn’t seem to be aimed at Burnett. This time, Burnett was the question and that was the answer.

    “Take it the way you want to take it,” Girardi said.

    General Joe should look at it. Check out these numbers:

    • A.J. Burnett, last 15 GS: 6.86 ERA (370 BF) and the Yankees went 3-12 in these 15 games.
    • Javier Vazquez, last 15 GS: 4.19 ERA (373 BF) and the Yankees went 10-5 in these 15 games – but, that was thanks to their bullpen because Javy went just 6-4 in these contests. Plus, in his last 7 starts, Vazquez has been hideous.
    • Phil Hughes, last 15 GS: 5.03 ERA (374 BF) and the Yankees went 10-5 in these 15 games – but, that was thanks to run support as the Yanks scored 7+ runs in 7 of these 15 games and scored 6 runs in another one.
    • CC Sabathia, last 15 GS: 2.22 ERA (448 BF) and the Yankees went 13-2 in these 15 games. An ace, period. But, his W-L is totally offset by the one from Burnett.
    • Dustin Moseley, last 6 GS: 4.63 ERA (148 BF) and the Yankees went 4-2 in these 6 games.

    Note that we’re talking “last 15 starts here,” sans for Moseley, and that’s not chump change as it represents a half-season in terms of starts given to a regular member of the rotation.

    Sabathia has been all you can ask for, and more. But, his efforts have been totally offset by the failures of Burnett. Hughes has been lousy – but lucky with run support. Vazquez, overall looks decent, and the Yanks have survived his starts thanks to the bullpen. But, let’s not forget that Javy lost his last turn in the rotation (to rookie Ivan Nova) because, in his last 7 starts, his ERA was 6.69 (in 35 IP) and batters were pasting him with a BA/OBA/SLG allowed of .327/.383/.673 (168 BF). And, Dustin Moseley (filing in for Andy Pettitte) has been, well, Dustin Moseley.

    Oh, and, by the way, the earliest that Andy Pettitte will return to pitching for the Yankees will be September 15th – when there’s just 14 games left to the season. So, what’s Andy going to get from here to season end, maybe, three starts?

    Since June 1st, the Yankees have gone 47-30, which is outstanding. But, it hasn’t been because of their starting rotation – outside of Sabathia. It’s their offense and bullpen which deserves most of the credit for that mark. But, lately, even that hasn’t helped – as New York is now 13-14 since July 30th.

    Bottom line, the Yankees starting rotation, excluding #52, is a mess. It’s a shame that the Yankees front office has turned a blind eye to this as it has been unfolding. Because, now, it may be too late to do anything about it.

    Comments on Cashman To Blame For The Sorry State Of The Yankees Starting Rotation?

    1. Raf
      August 28th, 2010 | 12:03 pm

      It’s a shame that the Yankees front office has turned a blind eye to this as it has been unfolding.

      They haven’t turned a blind eye to it.

      What’s the better indicator, that the team has gone 13-14 since July 30th or 34-16 before that span? And even during that 13-14 span, the starters have been all over the map, like they have been during the 34-16 span.

      At any rate, the Yanks were built to hit their way to the postseason, and the year that they didn’t hit, was the year that they missed the playoffs.

    2. Evan3457
      August 28th, 2010 | 1:09 pm

      I have this feeling of deja vu.

      Wasn’t this thread already up earlier in the week? Or was it last week?

    3. August 28th, 2010 | 7:06 pm

      My question to you is, what would you have the front office do?

      You crucify Cashman for spending in free agency, so that’s out.

      You’re no big fan of Ian Kennedy, so I doubt you’re pining away for him. Kei Igawa? Please. Joba to the rotation? You, and the rest of the world would rightfully kill the Yankees.

      I’m sure the front office isn’t turning a blind eye, but at some point, you have to go to war with the army you have, not the one you wish you had or will have at some point.

    4. August 28th, 2010 | 9:54 pm

      @ Sean McNally:
      There have been many, many, “quality” SP to change teams in the past 8-10 months. Halladay, Oswalt, Lilly, Haren, Lee (2x), etc. And, the only one that the Yankees were in play on was Lee, the second time.

      We keep hearing about how loaded the Yankees farm system is, top ten stuff, so, why not trade some of these prospects and get a proven SP to help the team this season, before it was too late.

      Yeah, I know, I know, the Yankees don’t trade prospects for players they’re going to have to pay, or, for players they can get on the FA market later. Well, that’s bull, as we know, because they were willing to do it on Lee. And, they did trade prospects to get Vazquez and Granderson – who, by the way, have both performed poorly this season…yet another failure on the Yankees front office.

      Now, don’t get me wrong, I hate having the $200 million payroll. And, I know the way around that is to develop your own players. But, I also know that, when you’re THIS close, and you’re the New York Yankees, you play to win NOW. A-Rod’s not getting younger. Neither is Jeter. Same with Pettitte, Posada and Mo. The Yankees may not be this close for another 5 years…for all we know. So, make the trade, get a starting pitcher, upgrade on Vazquez and Burnett…but, nope, didn’t happen.

      Yes, the M’s played Cashman on Lee. But, that shouldn’t have been his only attempt. Like I said, too many quality SP have changed teams. There were others out there. Or, he could have went for Lee when the Phils traded him. But, he didn’t. Once he got Vazquez, which was a mistake, he sat on what he had – and that’s why he’s stuck with what he has now.

    5. Raf
      August 28th, 2010 | 10:56 pm

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      We keep hearing about how loaded the Yankees farm system is, top ten stuff, so, why not trade some of these prospects and get a proven SP to help the team this season, before it was too late.

      That the Yankees are looking to make a trade does not necessarily mean that other teams are willing to deal with them.

      The team is currently in 1st place, leading the league in runs scored. The starters are 4th in the league in runs, a tick behind the Twins. They’ll be fine.

    6. Evan3457
      August 29th, 2010 | 12:15 am

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      @ Sean McNally:
      There have been many, many, “quality” SP to change teams in the past 8-10 months. Halladay, Oswalt, Lilly, Haren, Lee (2x), etc. And, the only one that the Yankees were in play on was Lee, the second time.
      We keep hearing about how loaded the Yankees farm system is, top ten stuff, so, why not trade some of these prospects and get a proven SP to help the team this season, before it was too late.
      Yeah, I know, I know, the Yankees don’t trade prospects for players they’re going to have to pay, or, for players they can get on the FA market later. Well, that’s bull, as we know, because they were willing to do it on Lee. And, they did trade prospects to get Vazquez and Granderson – who, by the way, have both performed poorly this season…yet another failure on the Yankees front office.
      Now, don’t get me wrong, I hate having the $200 million payroll. And, I know the way around that is to develop your own players. But, I also know that, when you’re THIS close, and you’re the New York Yankees, you play to win NOW. A-Rod’s not getting younger. Neither is Jeter. Same with Pettitte, Posada and Mo. The Yankees may not be this close for another 5 years…for all we know. So, make the trade, get a starting pitcher, upgrade on Vazquez and Burnett…but, nope, didn’t happen.
      Yes, the M’s played Cashman on Lee. But, that shouldn’t have been his only attempt. Like I said, too many quality SP have changed teams. There were others out there. Or, he could have went for Lee when the Phils traded him. But, he didn’t. Once he got Vazquez, which was a mistake, he sat on what he had – and that’s why he’s stuck with what he has now.

      They were also in on Haren.

    7. August 29th, 2010 | 7:53 am

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      “There have been many, many, “quality” SP to change teams in the past 8-10 months. Halladay, Oswalt, Lilly, Haren, Lee (2x), etc. And, the only one that the Yankees were in play on was Lee, the second time.”

      The Yankees kicked the tired on Halladay, but the Jays were never going to trade him in the division, so that’s a fantasy.

      I’m happy the passed on Oswalt. He’s owed a ton of money and we’ve just seen that going from the NL to the AL is dicey proposition.

      Ted Lilly is having a decent season, but I saw him pitch in person in Chicago during a good start, he’s not a “quality” starting pitching.

      The Yankees also, as I recall, talked to the D’Backs about Haren, but the price didn’t match up.

      Lee is a red herring. When the Phillies traded him the first time, it was part of the Halladay deal and then the second time they DID trade for him, only to get hosed by the Mariners.

      Again, I ask exactly what the front office could do to appease you?

    8. August 29th, 2010 | 9:11 am

      Sean McNally wrote:

      Again, I ask exactly what the front office could do to appease you?

      Acquire a starting pitcher, sometime between last November and this past June that would not but them in a position to pray Pettitte comes back and is effective, and/or, have to count on the likes of Burnett and Vazquez to win post-season starts for them.

      Did they try to do this? We only know what the media has suggested. But, as Yoda says, there is no try. I don’t care what they tired and/or didn’t try to do. In Yankeeland, it’s about the bottom line. And, the bottom line here is that they needed another quality SP to match with CC, and, they didn’t get the job done.

    9. Raf
      August 29th, 2010 | 11:30 am

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      And, the bottom line here is that they needed another quality SP to match with CC, and, they didn’t get the job done.

      No, the bottom line is that they’re a division leader with the best record in baseball, and they’re the defending world champs with a league leading offense.

    10. August 29th, 2010 | 11:40 am

      @ Raf:
      So, we should ignore the stats for Burnett, Vazquez and Hughes over their last 15 starts? And, ignore the fact that Pettitte won’t be back for at least 2 weeks and will be rusty when he comes back? And, ignore all this just because they are “a division leader with the best record in baseball, and they’re the defending world champs with a league leading offense”?

    11. Raf
      August 29th, 2010 | 12:17 pm

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      How did the team handle Teix’s struggles? Pettitte will be rusty? He’s a veteran of how many years? You don’t think he knows what he needs to do to prepare for a ML start?

      Why are you focusing on the last 15 starts, when their body of work encompasses more than 15 starts? How bout looking at the season to date, how about looking at their track record?

      Up to this point the following teams have starters that have allowed less runs than the Yanks;
      OAK, TBR, MIN

      Yanks are currently 5th in the league in quality start percentage, behind OAK, CHI, TBR, SEA.

      Panicking like this makes one have a clearer understanding why the Yanks didn’t do much of anything during the 80′s.

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