• Potential Yankees Post-Season Achilles’ Heels

    Posted by on September 27th, 2010 · Comments (10)

    Posada/Cervelli’s throwing…and…Mo?

    Joel Sherman makes a great case on these.

    For the record, I was all over the catcher’s throwing concerns seven weeks ago.

    The numbers, as Sherman shares, on Rivera, are scary, no?

    In his last six outings, Rivera has a 9.53 ERA, a .375 batting average against, a 1.032 OPS against, and three blown saves in six tries. He has faced 29 batters in this period and given up nine hits, walked two and hit two batters while striking out just one.

    Comments on Potential Yankees Post-Season Achilles’ Heels

    1. Corey Italiano
      September 27th, 2010 | 11:32 am

      Time to rest Mo till the last game.

    2. MJ Recanati
      September 27th, 2010 | 11:39 am

      @ Steve Lombardi:

      Regarding the base-stealing, absolutely a fair concern. Having said that, this is nothing new. The Angels learned they could run on the Yankees nearly a decade ago. Some teams do it and some teams don’t but, one way or another, everyone has known for a very long time that the Yanks don’t deal well with the running game.

      Regarding Rivera, he’s looked poor for several weeks now. It’s impossible to know if he’s injured, if it’s merely a blip on the radar or if it’s legitimately the end of his career. I suppose we won’t find out until next year.

      Either way, the bullpen is collapsing at the wrong time (#62, Rivera, Robertson all going through stuff right now).

    3. Corey Italiano
      September 27th, 2010 | 11:46 am

      @ MJ Recanati:
      Robertson was fantastic last night, though.

    4. 77yankees
      September 27th, 2010 | 11:51 am

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      Regarding the base-stealing, absolutely a fair concern. Having said that, this is nothing new. The Angels learned they could run on the Yankees nearly a decade ago. Some teams do it and some teams don’t but, one way or another, everyone has known for a very long time that the Yanks don’t deal well with the running game.

      Ditto….the catcher has been a train wreck behind the plate for the last decade +, and having a staff of pitchers past & present who mostly don’t hold runners well doesn’t help.

    5. Evan3457
      September 27th, 2010 | 12:53 pm

      Mariano is the real concern here.

      If he’s really lost it, or just can’t get out of his current funk, then the Yanks’ chances of winning it all deceases significantly. He was the Yanks’ key advantage over their competition in the postseason a year ago.

      It was noted many times that he was the only closer in the postseason who didn’t blow a save.

      The Rays did steal 22 of 23 from the Yanks this season. In the two series just past, the Rays stole 4 bases with 1 caught, and 1 pickoff. None of the 4 lead to a run.
      ==========================================
      …and #62 got two big outs in a tie game last night.

      Sorry, MJ.

    6. MJ Recanati
      September 27th, 2010 | 1:14 pm

      Evan3457 wrote:

      …and #62 got two big outs in a tie game last night.

      Sorry, MJ.

      If he starts an inning, he’s probably going to get out of it (as he did last night against the HOF-caliber Eric Patterson /snark). But his strand rate ain’t so hot, you have to agree with that, right?

    7. MJ Recanati
      September 27th, 2010 | 1:19 pm

      @ Evan3457:
      FYI – I’m not trying to be snarky with you specifically, I’m just irritated with the Yankees’ play of late, with Joe Girardi’s managing, with the fact that opposing pitchers of various skill levels can carry one- or two-hitters deep into games against our lineup, with our bullpen slowly breaking down after several months of good work…

      As for #62, there’s nothing anyone can say to change my mind. It’s not worth trying. I don’t want him pitching with men on base and I don’t want him pitching for the Yankees. Every time I see his face, I want to bury my fist into it.

    8. Evan3457
      September 27th, 2010 | 2:05 pm

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      Evan3457 wrote:
      …and #62 got two big outs in a tie game last night.
      Sorry, MJ.
      If he starts an inning, he’s probably going to get out of it (as he did last night against the HOF-caliber Eric Patterson /snark). But his strand rate ain’t so hot, you have to agree with that, right?

      Actually, that’s not right, according to the statistics. Before the blowup against the Rays this week, he had only allowed 5 of 30 inherited runners to score (17%) which was much lower than the AL average of 31%.

      His triple slash rate stats were much better with men on base, but worse with multiple men on base.

      As of now, he’s allowed 8 of 36 inherited runners to score, which is 22%. The league average is 31%. The team average is 27%. Mariano and Logan are at 22%, Robertson’s at 30% Wood has been brilliant at 10%.

      Triple rate stats:

      Overall: .252/.312/.381/.693
      Men on base: .231/.293/.371/.664
      RISP: .284/.352/.444/.796
      RISP, 2 outs: .269/.367/.372/.739
      Late & Close: .252/.306/.354/.660
      Tie game: .174/.240/.304/.544
      Within 1 run: .247/.314/.366/.660
      Within 2 runs: .252/.302/.374/.676
      Margin > 4 runs: .273/.333/.432/.765
      Ahead: .278/.330/.409/.739
      Behind: .217/.289/.333/.622

      ….High leverage: .301/.359/.470

      So what’s going on here is that he’s blown a half dozen small leads in big spots. Maybe they can get better use out of him in tie games and down by 1. I don’t know.

      Since July 25th, his WPA (including the brutal blowup against Tampa on Thursday) is +0.910.

      From opening day to May 14th, +0.504

      Between May 14th and July 25th, -0.528

      For the season, WPA is +0.885

    9. Evan3457
      September 27th, 2010 | 2:19 pm

      Bullpen WPA’s for the season:

      Mariano: +2.17
      Robertson: +1.54
      Wood: +1.42 (Remarkable for just two months)
      Joba: +0.97 (Fangraphs measurement; somehow different from Base-Ref figure cited in above reply)
      Logan: +0.29

      Wins above Replacement:

      Mariano: +1.5
      Joba +1.2
      Robertson: +0.6
      Wood: +0.4
      Logan: +0.3

      ==========
      League wide, Mo ranks 5th and Joba 11th in WAR, because WAR calculates value from raw stats, not from situations, like WPA does. (out of 60 AL relievers, min 45 IP)
      ==========

      Mo ranks 7th in the AL in WPA, Robertson 16th, and Joba 22nd (out of 60).

      ==============================
      Joba’s pitched well from Opening Day to mid-April, and again from late July until now. He pitched just about as bad as a reliever can be from mid-May to late-July.

      But he’s had about 4-5 trainwrecks in key spots scattered through the season, and few other games in which he gave up a key run or two at the wrong time.

      He does have 24 holds, and only 4 blown saves. In his 70 games, he’s been unscored on in 51 of them, and not even allowed a baserunner is 27 of them.

      BABIP is a tad high at .325.

      I don’t know what to make of all this. He hasn’t been great; he’s been very erratic; he’s had some spectacular blowups, and also some great clutch appearances. His overall numbers (not counting ERA itself) are pretty good, actually. 70 K and 22 BB with only 5 HR in 68 2/3 IP are good marks for a reliever; 68 hits is not.

      I think we expect perfection of him, and he hasn’t been close to that. He’s been mediocre too many times, and bad too many times.

      I dunno. I’m not ready to give up on him. I wish he were more consistent, though.

    10. MJ Recanati
      September 27th, 2010 | 2:40 pm

      Evan3457 wrote:

      I think we expect perfection of him, and he hasn’t been close to that. He’s been mediocre too many times, and bad too many times.

      I dunno. I’m not ready to give up on him. I wish he were more consistent, though.

      I don’t expect perfection from him because no one — not even Mo — is perfect.

      What I expect is competence and consistency, neither of which I get from #62. I suppose I should temper my expectations because, after all, he’s just another fungible middle reliever and those dudes are a dime a dozen. After all, I can live with blowups from Robertson, Tom Gordon, Paul Quantrill, Jeff Nelson, Mike Stanton, Ramiro Mendoza, etc. bsaed on the same premise that middle relievers generally all stink so they’ll disappoint you from time to time. If they didn’t stink for one reason or another, they wouldn’t be middle relievers.

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