Torre more clueless than usual yesterday

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I hate to relive last night’s game. I really do. But after posing this question last night, Joe Torre has forced my hand yet again.

After the Scott Proctor debacle ended, our man on the street, Peter Abraham, posted his usual postgame wrap-up complete with audio from the Yankee skipper. Abraham, taking a cue from common sense, asked Torre if he considered using Rivera in a tie game on the road. (Oh, the horrors!)

Here is Joe Torre’s answer from the audio clip on Abraham’s site:

He pitched in the 8th and 9th just a couple of days ago on Saturday and I wasn’t ready to bring him in at that point.

Got that? Joe Torre, Yankee manager, thinks that Rivera threw too many innings on Saturday and couldn’t be used in the 9th inning of a tie game the Yanks should have won. Well, as any Yankee fan knows, Mariano Rivera didn’t pitch on Saturday. That was the other game this week the Yanks lost in a final at-bat with Rivera in the pen.

No, Joe, Rivera pitched last on Friday when he threw a whopping 20 pitches in 1.2 innings. Funny enough, those are the only 1.2 innings Rivera has thrown since June 16, a span of ten days.

There you have it. The Yankees manager doesn’t know when he uses his relievers, and he thinks that his closer can’t handle more than 1.2 innings over a ten-day span. So either Rivera is hurt and can’t pitch too much or Joe is completely clueless as Rob Neyer intimates today. I know which one I’m picking.

Robinson Cano: Let him hack
What it takes to be a GM
  • Jersey

    Oh jesus.

  • mehmattski

    For what it’s worth, Rivera has pitched late in a tie game on the road this season, back in Oakland. And he did once last year, during the massacre 5-game series in Boston. For comparison’s sake, Trevor Hoffman hasn’t pitched in a tie game on the road since opening day, 2005.

  • The Scout

    I would characterize Torre’s handling of the bullpen as mechanical. He adheres to a rigid formula. When it works, as it did in the late 1990s and up to 2001, he seems systematic and disciplined. When it doesn’t, he appears rigid and, in the popular idiom, “clueless.” It hasn’t worked for several years.

    Note, too, that the Yankees often get one good year out of a relief pitcher such as Proctor, but burn him out in the process. Many fans complained that he was overused last year. What Torre refers to as “trust” is also mechanical — the fixed reliance on particular pitchers in certain situations, without regard to the long-term impact on the player. Proctor hasn’t been the same pitcher this year as last. He wore out Villone last year and he’s done the same to others in the past. If you’re a relief pitcher and Torre trusts you, you better have a rubber arm.

    The obvious answer is to make some other arms available. But the same pattern that leads Torre to over-rely on a few key relievers would undermine any attempt to alter the composition of the bullpen. He won’t trust the newcomers. They won’t get a second chance if they fail, even when the “trusted” arms such as Proctor fail more and more.

  • Barry

    Love Joe but he needs to go.

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