Tuesday, April 24, 2007

126 Home-Runs, 90+ Losses

A-Rod tied for the most home-runs ever in April, connecting on his 14th of the season in the 9th. And there is still six games left in the month. Baseball loves it stats and A-Rod is putting up some for the ages, one short of the RBI record for April, batting over .400, and closing in quickly on 500 career homers. Unfortunately, he does not pitch.

Once again, a Yankee starter is unable to get through the fifth. Kei Igawa was tattooed. He has not looked good, and personally, I am afraid he is confirming the fact that many people think the Yanks overspent and reacted to the Dice-K signing. If not for injuries Igawa would have been on the bus to Scranton by now. If they keep waiting, his ERA will be too inflated to fit on that bus. They will need to get the Madden Cruiser.

Joe Torre is on a quest. He is trying to use every relief pitcher in every game, and ruin at least two careers in the process. Since that challenge is not hard enough, he has decided it needs to be done without using Kyle Farnsworth, the highest paid middle reliever. In a stretch where no starter outside of Andy Pettitte is getting past the fifth inning, and they are losing games when they offense puts up six or seven runs, its amazing that Farnsworth has pitched nary an inning. Two possibilities, one is that Torre has lost all confidence in the latest big-money middle relief bust. While probably true, these were not close games and Torre clearly could have used Farnsworth to eat an inning while losing to Tampa instead of using the immortal Colter Bean. The other possibility is something is seriously wrong. If that’s the case, the Yanks have to look at putting him on the DL and getting another arm in here. Just to survive. If he is not hurt, and the Astros can still get Brad Lidge into a game, I am sure Torre can find a spot.

In the midst of a four game losing streak, with a sub-500 record, there is plenty of blame to go around. The team is just playing sloppy and lazy. There are no excuses for giving up a stolen base without having anyone even cover second base, or not advancing an extra base when an outfielder bobbles the ball.

The season is not lost, but I do not know if this will turn around soon. Wang and Mussina are both close to returning, but will either be able to pitch deep into games when they return? And with the snap decision to bring up Phil Hughes, who will definitely be on a strict pitch count, will the bullpen get any relief.

In the past, when things seemed bleak the Yanks have always reacted by jettisoning minor leaguers for a replacement. Hopefully they can resist the calls for Clemens…at least for now.


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