Game 140: Phil of the Future faces Seattle


How can there be just 23 games left? Didn’t the season just start last week? I remember opening day so vividly. Sitting in the bleachers on a cool, cloudy April day, we gave Carl Pavano a big hand, and Alex Rodriguez blasted the first of his 46 home runs late in the game.

Things fell apart for a while, but here we are at game 140. The Yanks are 77-62 with the fourth best record in the American League. They are clinging to a two-game lead in the Wild Card with a chance to open up some distance tonight.

Phil Hughes, who has spent the last few days working with Dave Eiland, is due for a big start. Since coming off the DL, Hughes is 1-2 with a 6.40 ERA in 32.1 innings. I’m impressed with his 8.1 K/9 IP in that span but dismayed by his 4.2 BB/9 IP. I haven’t been too happy with the way Jorge Posada has called his games either.

So tonight is a big one for Hughes. The Yanks don’t know when – or even if – Roger Clemens will return to the rotation, and the team needs a starter other than Andy Pettitte or Chien-Ming Wang to turn in some consistent outings.

The Mariners, losers of 10 of their last 11, counter with Jarrod Washburn. The lefty has thrown well against the Yanks in his career. It could be a battle tonight, but we’ve got our number one bullet – Joba Chamberlain – itchin’ to pitch. Somehow, Joe Torre has avoided getting him into a game since Wednesday which is just swell.


Johnny Damon LF
Melky Cabrera CF
Derek Jeter SS
Alex Rodriguez 3B – He went for an MRI on his ankle this afternoon.
Jorge Posada DH – MVP! MVP!
Shelley Duncan RF – If he hits, Giambi sits.
Robinson Cano 2B
Wilson Betemit 1B
Hava Molina C – On Saturday, the Yankee Stadium scoreboard announcer played the Hebrew folk song “Hava Nagila” when Molina came up. I’m sure Jose had no idea what was going on. Hence the new nickname.

Phil Hughes P

Categories : Game Threads


  1. Count Zero says:

    Amen to that. I would sure like to see another glimpse of that guy who had a very dominant non-no going in TX before a fluke hammy pull. A strong performance from “Don’t Call Me Philip” would go a long way towards making me believe in this team’s chances in October.

    Here’s hoping Eiland knew something the rest of us didn’t.

  2. Mike A. says:

    A-Rod said he was a ready to go, but the team sent him to get an MRI 3+ hours before first pitch. The way I see it, the only way he doesn’t play is if they find major structural damage.

    And besides, he’s so good he should be forced to play with an injured ankle just to make the playing field level.

  3. Michael T says:

    Let’s see if Molina has a better game plan for Phil. Unfortunately, if he can’t spot the fastball well enough to get into pitcehr’s counts, there isn’t much a catcher can call for since he is only throwing one secondary pitch. What happened to his change-up?

  4. Greg says:

    I’ve got a good feeling about Hughs tonight…..I’m expecting an amazing start.

    Ben, I was at opening day in the bleachers (Left Field) too! What an awesome game that was! :)

  5. JS says:

    Mike, that’s a great story you linked to..I literally have tears in my eyes right now.

  6. dan says:

    from pete abe:

    UPDATE, 6:23 p.m.: Here is the new lineup:
    Damon LF
    Cabrera CF
    Jeter SS
    Rodriguez DH
    Cano 2B
    Duncan RF
    Giambi 1B
    Betemit 3B
    Molina C
    Hughes RHP (2-3, 5.65)

  7. Mac says:

    Was that a 78 mph change-up I saw mixed in there to Beltre?

    Go Hughes.

  8. zack says:

    The ump better call that ridiculously outside pitch that he did to Duncan for Hughes

  9. cjc says:

    I’m not one to complain about umps and I understand that a rookie will not get the respect a vet will but the difference in these strikezones is a joke its an utter disgrace

  10. Mike A. says:

    I don’t want to be “that guy,” but Phil doesn’t get any calls on the corners. Look at the last strike that Buchholz threw for his no-no, then look at the pitches that aren’t getting called for Phil. Ridiculous.

    • zack says:

      No need to apologize, you aren’t being that guy. its a crime. Hughes basically has to throw the ball straight down the middle to get a called strike, its ridiculous. I don’t know why it is and why Buchholz got those calls, but thats hows its been. I mean, freaking Washburn has been getting double the zone Phil has.

      And then the result is that HR, sigh

      • Mac says:

        Yeah, I’ve been noticing that a lot, and I was wondering if it’s cause I am biased and want Hughes to do well. But, I just feel like he’s constantly getting squeezed and it’s infuriating as hell.

  11. Mike A. says:

    Heh, I didn’t see the previous 2 comments before writing my last one…

  12. cjc says:

    god he can throw some homers

    • Mike A. says:

      That’s what happens when you’re forced to pitch to the middle 12 inches of a 17 inch wide plate.

      These calls are bullshit. Have been since he came back off the DL.

      Go Hava!

      • zack says:

        Exactly. Any FB down the middle wil do that when the batter knows its coming. And I am sure the batters are noticing that they don’t have to swing at anything not directly down the middle. 8 called strikes for Hughes out over 50. That ain’t right…

  13. zack says:

    The curve is working tonight

  14. Mac says:

    Gotta love that he’s battling. I can’t believe people second guess Hughes. He’s rolling with the punches here and keeping us in the game, can you ask for more from him? If I see Pete Abe say he should still be in the minors tonight I’ll flip.

  15. zack says:

    Looks like Yesterday’s offensive output was really an aberration…

  16. cjc says:

    the Washburn dominace is something I will never figure out

  17. cjc says:

    big time game from phil now if only they could string together some flippin hits

  18. zack says:

    All in all, a much, much improved showing for Hughes. Factor in the atrocious HP ump, and its even better (of course the atrocious umps in the filed helped too)

  19. zack says:

    I’d take 6IP 4 hits any day. Of course, when we are up against Cy Washburn, I guess that just doesn’t cut it…

  20. zack says:

    rather, 5 hits

  21. Mike A. says:

    You gotta go Joba for 2 right here. There off tomorrow, and they can get by without him vs KC on Friday.

  22. Mike A. says:

    Come on baby, let’s get Phil the W.

  23. Mike A. says:

    Hava Nagila…Jose Molina…I get it now. Good grief.

  24. kunaldo says:

    thank goodness that rolled ankle was nothing…..

  25. cjc says:

    now lets go

  26. NYFan50 says:

    Hard to tell on GameDay…were the calls on Phil’s pitches really that egregious?

  27. cjc says:

    now thats clutch :P

  28. cjc says:

    so with seattle and there pitching changes this inning should be over by 2 or 3 am

  29. Mike 44 says:

    Give Willie Bloomquist my regards about those bad ball calls tonight

  30. cjc says:

    jeez maybe you should make another pitching change

  31. cjc says:

    and he did

  32. Mac says:

    You know, for a team with a good pen, McClaren has sure misused it…

    He’s making Joe look good at this point.

  33. cjc says:

    ok if I see that dog whisperer commercial one more time someone at YES will feel my wrath

  34. Wordekemper = Wizard says:

    i like edwar here. obviously no need for joba, mo isn’t pitching the ninth, and joe’s looking for reasons to trust edwar. lately there haven’t been any. maybe edwar goes two, or farnsworth/bruney pitches the ninth?

  35. Wordekemper = Wizard says:

    really wish phil could have gotten the win; i guess joba has earned one. if joba gives up a homer on his next at-bat, his era is 0.74. sweet.

  36. Mike A. says:

    I could be wrong, but I think the 48 HR ties the single season record for HR by a 3B, which is currently held by A-Rod & Michael Jack Schmidt. Again, I could be wrong.

    • Michael T says:

      They only count HRs when you are playing third, so tonight’s don’t count. I also think he hit one earlier this year as DH.

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