August 13, 2011

Schadenfreude 119 (A Continuing Series)

CC Sabathia became only the sixth Yankees pitcher since 1919 (which means, most likely, franchise history) to allow five home runs in one game. (Two of those previous five instances came at the hands (and bats) of the Red Sox: Jeff Weaver on July 21, 2002, and David Wells on July 4, 2003.) Sabathia had never allowed more than three home runs in a game before yesterday.

(BRef has some more CC info. Check out the 1971 pitching line of Denny McLain!)

Frank Isola, Daily News:
Neither Sabathia nor manager Joe Girardi sounded overly concerned that the Yankees' top starter has now given up 12 earned runs in his last two outings. Their rationale is that Sabathia's fastball got too much of the plate and Tampa Bay took advantage in a devastating way each time.

What they wouldn't say is that Sabathia's first mini-slump comes at a time when A.J. Burnett continues to implode and Mariano Rivera, who wasn't used Friday night, has produced three sub-par outings. ...

But it all unraveled horribly for Sabathia, who tied a franchise record by giving up five home runs in one game, including two to players who aren't hitting their weight. ...

"He's just not quite as sharp as he was when he was reeling off all those wins," Girardi said after the Yankees lost for the fourth time in six games.
Joel Sherman, Post:
[A]s far as weeks in a season go, there hardly could be one more unsettling than this one for the Yankees. Because this was not about Phil Hughes' lost velocity or A.J. Burnett's untrustworthiness or Rafael Soriano's mindset.

The failure this week was about Sabathia starting and Rivera finishing. ...

Sabathia now has lost his last two starts, pitching to a 7.71 ERA with six homers allowed in 14 innings. ... In his last three appearances, Rivera has a 13.50 ERA, a 1.464 OPS against and two homers permitted in 2.2 innings.

The Yankees say this is merely a blip even great players endure. ...

But six weeks before the playoffs, it is impossible to ignore how flimsy the Yankees' playoff chances become if either Sabathia or Rivera is not great in October; and if both underperform, the Yankees have a better chance of winning the Stanley Cup than the World Series.
Bryan Hoch,
A.J. Burnett may be winless in his last seven starts for the Yankees, but ... [general manager Brian] Cashman launched into an impassioned defense of Burnett's season on Friday, opining that the level of criticism being heard about the 34-year-old right-hander hasn't been warranted by his pitching.

"The stuff on A.J. is well overblown," Cashman said. "A.J. has been solid for us this year. ... The public outcry recently is all emotion rather than actual. ... A.J. Burnett is not pitching anywhere close to as bad as people reflect."
Fred Kerber, Post:
[Cashman] called on critics to "peel the onion" and examine Burnett's recent numbers, claiming a lack of victories could be attributed to various factors.

Cashman said he is "used to the bull---- emotional response to stuff that doesn't accurately reflect reality. ... Look at his starts. He's got one of the least amount of run supports. If you break down his start-by-start scenario and you look at those starts, it's not bad."
Cashman did not explain how poor run support from his teammates would account for Burnett's 6.00 ERA since June 29.


9casey said...

I think AJ might be allright if he was playing for the Marlins, But the question Cashman has to answer is wheter or not he is one of the best 5 starting pitchers on the yankees right now.

GK said...

I dont need to "peel the onion", to know it stinks!.
-back to lurkerdom

allan said...

Carlos Zambrano also gave up 5 HR last night. Then, after pitching inside twice to Chipper Jones, he was ejected. So Zamboni cleaned out his locker, left the clubhouse, and told Cubs team personnel he was considering retirement.

Cubs manager Mike Quade: "I came in, saw there was an empty locker. Then I heard that he was retiring, that he had left. ... I don't know [if he's retiring]. So you guys go find him and see what he says."

allan said...

Cashman: "If you smoke the objective pipe, I think the coverage on him would be a little smoother, more accurate."

"the objective pipe" -- an instant classic! amazingly, no one had started a blog with that title yet (at blogspot or wordpress).

Mike Mazzeo, ESPNNewYork:

We didn't "smoke the objective pipe," but here's what we came up with:

• Of all pitchers who qualify for the ERA title, Burnett ranks 91st (4.60).

• As far as run support is concerned, Burnett ranks 27th in the majors (6.84).

• He hasn't won since June 29 and is 0-3 with a 6.00 ERA during that stretch (seven starts).

• He hasn't won an August start in his two-plus seasons with the Yankees (0-8, 7.18).