May
05

Open Thread: A cup of Joe

By

Today one’s of those — whaddyacallit — off days for the Yanks. It’s a rare occurrence indeed this season, and obviously, we won’t have a game thread. So let’s try an open thread instead.

With 33 games down, the Yanks have seen 20 percent of the season fade into the rear view mirror. They’ve once again had their early-season struggles. The offense hasn’t clicked yet; the young pitchers haven’t lived up to expectations. But when all is said and done, they’re 17-16, three games out of first. Last year, they were 16-17 and a whopping seven games out of first place. Things are downright rosy for the 2008 Yankees through the lens of 2007.

For Yankee fans and the New York media, two groups who demand perfection at every turn in the Big Apple, 2008 is also a year of monumental change in the Bronx. We’ve got a new Joe in town. Joe Torre fled for LA after a fairly bitter divorce, and Joe Girardi took the reins.

Girardi’s tenure has been a little shaky through April. He didn’t have the smoothest of relationships with a media used to the mannerisms of Joe Torre. The Yankee propaganda machine has obscured injuries and roster moves, and press coverage in turn has been far from favorable.

On the field, Girardi has shown a tendency to keep some of his relievers out there for too long, but I think his bullpen management has been fair. He’s done a far better job at balancing the relief load than Joe Torre ever did, and he continues to trot out the young kids, such as Ross Ohlendorf, far more often than Torre would.

So here’s my question to you, loyal RAB readers, on this off day: How do you rate Joe Girardi’s first 33 games in New York? Do you like the job he’s doing? Do you pine for Joe Torre? How would you hope to see Girardi improve over his next 33 games and beyond?

Categories : Open Thread
  • dan

    I pine for Steve Phillips.

    • ctkaiser

      Get your tongue out of your cheek please.

  • http://myspace.com/lincolnsworld Link

    I would say that Giradi has been fair so far with IMO only a few egregious errors, most notably the refusal to bring in Mo in that 3-3 Indians game that Ohlie ended up losing…I do agree that he has spread the load and even if he leaves relievers in longer than need be they seem to get sufficient rest afterwards…

    My question is this…have the Yankees decided what they want to do this year? Coming in to this season it seemed like the consensus was to let the young players develop and evaluate in-house talent for the future and somewhat ‘rebuild’ but based upon Hank’s comments and IPK’s demotion it seems they still have a desire to win above all. I understand the confidence thing but IPK is not going to learn how to get major leaguers out at AAA.

  • pete

    it’s easy to say that he has had a rough go of it so far or w/e, but when you think about it, some guys just aren’t performing. That’s not to say that he has been perfect; ohlendorf has been overpitched somewhat and albaladejo has been stretched out too far in many of his outings, and both have been used in questionable spots at times. That said, i think the most important part of Girardi’s job this year was managing the bullpen as a whole, and i think he has done an excellent job of that, ohlendorf and albaladejo aside. He has effectively gotten every pitcher in the bullpen in on a fairly regular basis to maintain a rhythm, and he has shown the confidence in all of his bullpen parts, especially farnsworth and all of the young guys, that is necessary for them to succeed by giving them opportunities to put prior struggles behind them. I really liked the way he got veras and ramirez right into games when they got called up, and has been consistent with them, as they were the two biggest problems torre had last year i thought. Both ramirez and veras have the ability to dominate in short relief, but were very unreliable last year because of the inconsistency of their usage. It would be nice to see Britton get a little more time, though, and it would be nice if the lineup would stay put to some degree.

  • Mike P

    I would say that despite Torre’s supposed brutal treatment of young arms, he probably would have got more out of Hughes/IPK. He was the master at helping players deal with the pressure of New York and that’s where I think Girardi could’ve been better. It doesn’t seem to me like the two kids settled down at all and Girardi couldn’t get them going. The problems seem to be mainly mental so I think he could have done better there.

    • http://myspace.com/lincolnsworld Link

      Good point..Girardi sounded annoyed almost disgusted when talking about Kennedy/Hughes after their later outings…Torre would have never given off that attitude and would have an arm around them for sure…

    • JT

      I think your giving Torre a little too much credit for his supposed “calming ability”.

    • Steve S

      So now it was the weather, the schedule, the lineups they faced, and of course Joe Girardi. I have no issue with Joe Torre, but its insane to try and blame Joe Girardi for these kids. And Joe Torre was never brutal with young arms, he was brutal with guys in the bullpen, young and old.

      The one kid was hurt and not right. Kennedy was not ready. He wasnt doing what he was doing in September last year. Its still there but the luxury you have when they are 23 is you can send them down to the minors to get some things straightened out.

      I am little annoyed with Dave Eisland who was got the job because of the three kids and I havent seen what exactly he brings.

      • Mike P

        Hang on a second, “it’s insane to blame Joe Girardi”. No one even blamed Joe Girardi. I just suggested he could have handled it better. Which I think is pretty clear.

        No one ever said it was his fault the kids aren’t pitching, and it isn’t of course. As their manager though maybe he could have helped a bit more.

        When you make that kind of inflammatory comment, calling someone “insane” without even reading the post properly, it’s pretty derogatory. Make your point without it sounding insulting.

        • Steve S

          Sorry to insult. But I still dont understand your comment. Its semantics. He could handled it better implies that he could have done something to make them pitch better. That to me is ridiculous. Maybe if you could clarify how he could have helped them, or what exactly Joe Torre did that was so great to “calm players” then I wouldnt be inclined to be so derrogatory. Did Joe make Arod feel comfortable when he was struggling? I know dropping an MVP to eighth in the middle of playoffs series always helps calm them. Did Joe help relax Tommy Gordon when he was vomitting in the bullpen in game 5 of the 2004 ALCS? How about Melky when he was first called up.

          And my point isnt to rip Joe Torre, but now we some how have extended his skills as manager from “media savvy” to helping calm young players. Call a spade a spade, Joe Torre has a had a series of really talented players, mostly veterans and he did an unbelievable job. But to somehow point to him and say Joe Girardi “didnt handle” them well when they pitched to a 9.00 ERA, then yes I think you are a little unbalanced. And thats not even getting to the point that Girardi was actually very good to them. He never stretched them out (partially because of their own bad performances) beyond what they should have. He even held Kennedy out of a game when there is a threat of rain and allowed Brian Bruney to start. And as for his handling of them in the media, he was nothing but complimentary until they stunk. and as much as we can all try and find some bright sides, this was awful and lets hope when both of them come back, this was as low as the valley goes.

      • ctkaiser

        I agree. I’m watching Hughes thinking, where’s the change he used so effectively last year, then Al Leiter wakes up and makes the point that Hughes only threw two change ups in 77 pitches. I would think among Girardi, Eiland and other organizational pitching coaches there would be a plan for how you want these young pitchers to work based on their stuff (fastball, curve, etc.) Obviously Detroit is a good htiing team but it was scary how aggressively they were swinging at Hughes’ curve balls.

  • eddie s.

    fair,needs to pull the dead weight not only out of the 5 hole-but out of the lineup (or even off the team)-joe torre? no way!

  • http://yankeesfuture.wordpress.com Pablo Zevallos

    i’d say 7.5/10

  • LiveFromNewYork

    I don’t care how Girardi treats the press. I care how he treats the players.

    1. Giambi. he’s treating him too well. He needs to sit his ass down.
    2. Farnsworth: Girardi said he believes in him and knows how to use him. Maybe that is all Krazy Kyle needed. He seems to be improving.
    3. Moose: doing well.
    4. Wang: doing well.
    5. Kennedy and Hughes. Okay, I have an issue that people have issues with Girardi about this. The FANS boo’d Hughes off the freaking mound. The MEDIA was calling for his demotion. And the MEDIA was calling for IPK’s head.

    After everything that everyone said, if JG came out and said, “Oh they’re doing good, they just need some time…” people would have swallowed him alive. If JG came out and said, “Oh they suck, down to AAA for both of them.” people would have swallowed him alive. Fans said, in the off season, that they had the stomach for a rebuilding year but they have shown CLEARLY that they do not.

    I think that if Girardi’s fault is anything is not taking the media and fans to task for treating the kids as they did. He has to succeed AND he needs to coddle the kids? Clearly the fans and media was not giving him that kind of patience. He should have reminded them of the schedule and the weather and given some kind of disdain for the impatience all around. But he doesn’t want to piss the entire world off in his first month.

    Joe Girardi is a brilliant analyst. He studies and studies and studies. Sometimes the tweaking of the lineup should stop but how much is that due to the brutal schedule and the weather? I guess we’ll find out but I wish he would sit cold guys (Giambi) and not sit a 24 year old on a hot streak (Melky).

    I think he’s doing a good job with bullpen management and that is very very important.

    I had hoped both he and the team and the kids would be lights out, but they weren’t. The weather sucked, the traveling was brutal, key players got hurt, the bats were cold and the kids struggled.

    And we’re still only 2.5 games out of first and we’re over .500. I would give Girardi a hearty B+.

    I look forward to more good moves from him…including SITTING GIAMBI!!

    • JT

      I gotta agree with everything that your saying, except…

      I still think that the fans who were willing to sacrifice this year as a rebuilding year, are still on that boat. I just think that the other fans who tolerate nothing but the playoffs every year, are making much more noise. It doesn’t help that the media constantly beats that dead horse into the ground.

      • LiveFromNewYork

        Thanks. I think you’re right. I hate those other fans.

  • The Scout

    Pitching makes a manager look brilliant or inept. To this point, the bullpen has been a success, but it has been overused and will break down over the long run. The failures of the starting pitchers can hardly be laid at the manager’s feet.

    Going into this season, the Yankees were a team built upon a massive contradiciton. They have an everyday line-up that is aging and nearing the end of its run. (Some of the players such as Giambi are clearly past their prime, possibly done.) This is the window for the everyday players to win; it won’t beopen that much longer.

    On the other hand, the starting pitching was in a development mode. The team began with two reliable starters — Wang and Pettite — one aging pitcher (Mussina), and two kids thrust into full-time starting roles. That simply isn’t a recipe for quick success. Everything has to break just right for that to work. it was a long shot and it hasn’t panned out.

    That doesn’t mean either approach — win now or build for the future — is wrong. The problem is that they don’t go together. So you end up asking the hitting and the bullpen to make up for deficiencies in the starting rotation.

    • steve (different one)

      i don’t think there was anything wrong with asking the hitting to make up some of that deficiency.

      this lineup should be hitting more. period.

    • My Pet Goat

      wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong… Somebody remind me, was Giambi the hub of the 2007 Yankees offense? I could have sworn his prime ended like 4 or five years ago. What do I know? I don’t even follow baseball. Still I like this concept of the massive contradiction. Perhaps we should get some philosophers or physicists to tackle this problem. Sounds like pretty deep stuff.

      Anyway here’s a list of (random) players in the Yankee lineup that possess questionable-washed-upedness: ARod, Jeter, Cano, Abreu, Matsui, Cabrera. That’s six out of nine, seven if you believe in Johnny Damon (I’d be willing to concede him and/or Matsui).

    • http://riveraveblues.com JimT

      Perfectly said. The Yankees should have either traded for Johan Santana and gone for it now or gone into a rebuild mode. They are half way in either dirrection today.

      Am I the only one that thinks that Ian Kennedy is going to fall in the ranks of Tyler Clippard and Brad Halsey as much balyhooed flops?

      • ctkaiser

        After watching some of Santana throw 116 pitches against the Dbacks I’m a little relieved. The Dbacks have the best record in baseball but that lineup doesn’t come close to Detroit’s or Boston’s. Obviously he will have better games but I’m not sold that he is even close to Becket.

  • Bonos

    Considering the whole team tanking on offense until lately, the young pitching imploding, the crappy weather and following the saintly Joe, he’ll be walking on water shortly. I like that he’s resting players and his handling of the bullpen. The set lineup thing is bull, these aren’t cattle and stalls. All in all a very professional job.

  • Miles Roche

    2 Innings in the books at Hickory, and Betances has already walked 4 batters.

  • Joey

    Basically, what I think has already been said, I’ll just repeat a few things.
    At this moment, I’ll give him a low B, maybe C+. Considering all the injuries and shitty offense, he seems to be doing pretty well.
    -Would love to see him have a little more “fire” that he was supposed to come with, you know, pump the team up.
    -I like how he’s handling the players, or more specifically the vets.
    -Loved his intense spring training, but it doesn’t seem to have made much of a difference, I don’t think you can prevent some injuries.
    -Like the way he is using the bullpen much better than Torre, but he is overusing them a bit, pulling the started (on a few occasions) early.

    With the rest of the team, I have been most impressed by CMW and Mo, I expected Mo to get off to a slower start like last year, but he’s been amazing. On the offensive end, Melk-man has looked pretty good, just needs to be a bit more consistent. Oh, plus before he got hurt Bruney was looking very good.

    I’ve been most disappointed by Robbie, but I’m confident he’ll pick it up. With IPK and Hughes, I did expect them to be better than they have been, but those bumps in the road everyone talks about have been more like huge pothole. The offense in general has disappointed me, but they seem to have been getting a little hotter lately.

  • Samples

    Regarding Girardi’s use of Giambi, it has to be for one of the following 3 reasons:

    1) A classic corporate management move. Give someone a workload they obviously can’t handle, watch them fail, then tell sr. management “See, I told you he couldn’t do the job. Please get him off my roster”.
    2) Overplay him until he sprains his uterus. Then, he’ll immediately go on the 60 day DL and the Yanks can collect some insurance.
    3) If he plays him and Giambi does well, then Joe can say “See, all Jason needed was someone to believe in him and let him play 1B.”

    In any of the 3 situations above, Girardi’s the winner. If Joe sits him, then it’s just a wasted roster spot and $3.5MM per month down the drain.

    • My Pet Goat

      here, here

    • Mike P

      I agree entirely. I think he decided there’s no point of Giambi being a bit part player as he can’t offer that much from the bench. See if he’s really finished or not, under the spotlight.

      • Marsha

        I say release Giambi. Who needs him and we’re paying his salary either way.

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos

        Mike – The day when he “couldn’t offer that much from the bench” and was “really finished” was sometime in mid May, 2004.

        DFA the fucker, already.

  • JRVJ

    Girardi has made some tactical mistakes (letting Moose pitch to Manny in Fenway, especially when Moose had pitched well up to then; the Ollie 9th inning game; stretching Albadejo too much in last week’s loss to Detroit), but I like the fact that by and large these moves are the by-product of Girardi’s learning curve….

    All things being equal (especially the A-Rod and Posada injuries), I think the Yanks are in fairly good shape, because:

    (a) They are fairly close in the East;

    (b) Cleveland and Detroit are in worst shape (I think of those 2 teams as the enemy for the WC – I’m not too concerned about Oakland, Tampa, Minny or Baltimore).

  • Miles Roche

    5 BB’s and 2 K’s for Betances through 3.

  • barry

    Great idea Ben.
    I like what type of shape the team is in this season as compared to the past, everyone looks a little more athetic, which is positive. The Yankees are 17-16 with an offense thats not performing up to par and some key hitters out. So far the team seems to operate smoothly under Girardi but there are some things I’d like to see more off. For on thing I would L like to see the Yanks steal more bases and create movement on the basebpads. I’d also like to see starters who are pitching well through 6 or 7 innings and show no signs of breaking down try to go the distance. I’d also like a certain player to not play, cough*Giambi*. All in all though I think Girardi was the right choice and I like what the team has done.

    • Bonos

      Tabata a 2B and a 1B so far 2 for 2

  • bobtaco

    In a close game with runners on in the later innings, I wish Girardi would play for the one run lead and bunt more. It goes along with his use of Mariano. If you are in a tie game and you get a one run lead for Mo, chances are you win. You don’t need multiple runs. Therefore, start the runner/steal/bunt the runner over with less than two outs. Try a damn squeeze if the runner is on third.

    There is nothing worse than seeing a double play or rally killed with a runner in scoring position and less than two outs and Mo rot in the BP. Girardi was supposed to be Mr. Small Ball McNational League. The first week of the season we got a taste, winning close games that were well managed. After that, Girardi seemed to revert into Joe Torre.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    I do think Torre would have done a better job with IPK. Who knows how long Hughes’ rib was bothering him, so it’s not fair to blame Girardi’s short fuse on his struggles. There was at least one occasion when Girardi ripped IPK apart on the mound, and he wasn’t the most supportive person in his postgame comments.

    The bullpen usage is fine, but it’s not a gigantic difference.

    I’m still waiting for him to walk Manny. Apparently players like Ramon Hernandez and Asdrubal Cabrera shouldn’t be pitched too with first base open and a man in scoring position, but Manny, we can get him out.

  • carlo

    I would say Joe G. has been good so far… I really like the way he uses the bullpen…. he doesn’t just rely on a couple of pitchers in the bullpen which allow them to gain confidence that will help during tough situations…. as far as the everyday line-up goes Joe has his hands tied because of the injuries….

  • mark b

    I am a fan of Joe Torre and prefer his personality, style, experience, track record and ability to succeed in New York.

    That said, I give Joe G. a “C” for the following reasons:

    1. Results – We had yet another slow start and have been sitting in fourth (now third) behind Boston, Baltimore. We can do better.
    2. Tactical Moves – I need not mention the poor moves he has made other have mentioned above. I will give him a pass here as 33 games does not make a season.
    3. Player Development – Torre seemed to have a great touch and way of handling and mentoring rookies (Cano, Cabrera and Wang). While Cabrera and Wang continue to do well, Cano has regressed and IPK and Hughes have done a 180. It might be early, though I am a bit troubled here.
    4. Player Health – while this could totally be a case of bad luck and pure happenstance, I do think it is worth mentioning that Jeter, A Rod, Posada and Bruney have all gone down under his watch in his first two months.

    That said, I think Cashman needs to make the move to help Joe G succeed by putting Joba in the rotation after (not O) Kei Igawa blows it in Detroit this weekend. Managing a team without a reliable 5th starter will ensure a third place finish for us. I know he gives us a shutdown pen, though I feel a helluva lot more confident with Joba starting and Farnie, Veras, Ohlie and ER setting up Mo, than Kei Igawa or some neophyte like Steven Jackson or Alan Horne.

  • GoYankees

    Joe’s handling of IPK was more than fair. If IPK can’t throw strike one, he cannot pitch in the majors. He’s had a month to show that he belongs and that’s more than enough. Most managers would have sent him down after three rough starts. He’s been lucky that the stadium crowd gave him slack. How long can that last?

  • http://www.myspace.com/j_panama Jamal G.

    Sorry to deviate from this topic but Jose Tabata is 3-for-3 thus far tonight with a 2B and a run scored. Tabata, with tonight included, has gone 7-for-11 in a 2+ game stretch starting Saturday.

    Owned.

    • dan

      Maybe we should all threaten to quit our jobs (not that I have one to begin with)

      • barry

        priceless. I took your advice and quit my pretend day job.

  • Manimal

    Im giving him a C, or a 7/10. His emotion on the bench is just a tad over Joe Torre but nowhere near lets say Ozzie, Francona or even Leyland. BUT, he has expressed anger, and disappointment in Kennedy/Hughes and I kind of like that, for him to call them out like that and say that they aren’t doing their jobs.

    My HUGE issue is that he is playing Giambi. Seriously, Shelley Duncan in a slump is better than Giambi right now.

    • yankeemonkey

      You offer a batshit crazy Ozzie as an example? OK…

  • Steve

    Torre who?

  • vinny-b

    A-

    and i am very thankful to have him as the manager, of the New York Yankees.

    • Joey

      wow, Girardi’s dad reads RAB?

  • My Pet Goat

    A good baseball manager is like a good librarian: you know one when everything is in its proper place and there’s a limited amount of shushing. A bad manager/librarian is pretty obvious, you’ll find Scott Proctor in the periodicals and ARod bats 8th. But ultimately, the manager doesn’t play the game and the librarian doesn’t tweak the contents of the books. I think its foolish and shortsighted to attribute much of the past month (good or bad) to Joe Girardi. I’ll be happy with him if he doesn’t burn out our staff, keeps everyone rested, doesn’t bat Jose Molina 2nd because he makes a lot of contact.

  • bkight13

    I would like to see a little more imagination on offense. I’d like to see more aggressive base-running and action plays like hit and runs and squeeze bunts. I know everyone in the lineup can hit a HR but if you put pressure on the defense they will make some mistakes. It just seems we are playing station to station and have to string together 3 hits to get a run. Overall I approve of Girardi’s handling of the kids and injuries.

  • Ivan

    Yo Matsuzaka is having one of the luckest games you will see in quite some time.

    • http://www.myspace.com/j_panama Jamal G.

      I know, it’s infuriating to watch. BTW, aren’t teams just given three option years for their draftees? If that’s true, isn’t this the last option year the Red Sox have on Craig Hansen?

      • dan

        Nope, he qualifies for the 4th option (like Sean Henn did last season) because he has fewer than 5 years of service in professional baseball.

        “Contracts of Major League players who, prior to commencement of the current season, have been credited with less than five seasons in professional baseball … shall be eligible for a fourth optional assignment, without waivers, during that season.”

        http://baseballanalysts.com/ar....._and_1.php

  • http://www.myspace.com/j_panama Jamal G.

    Wilkins De La Rosa has not allowed a ER in his last 7 outings, spanning 14IP and a 22:8 K:BB in that same span. Nasty.

    • Bonos

      And a lefty with 95 mph gas.

  • A-Point

    I don’t like Girardi. Didn’t like it when he was named Manager and he hasn’t changed my mind yet that this was a good move.

    I think Girardi is too controling, take for instance his removal of ice cream and candy from the clubhouse – including the visiting clubhouse.

    I don’t think his bullpen management is all that different from Torre’s. Ohlendorf has been used far too much this year already. No long reliever, but Ohlendorf gets pushed into that role.

    Girardi had problems with the Media because he lied. Yet he lies again saying that they misunderstood him and he gets a pass. Please. I hate liars. You can’t trust them.

    Girardi has come off as a petulant kid at times in the post game interviews where they lost.

    His “creative” lineups are overboard. Players don’t like the musical chair approach to batting orders. While sometimes it makes sense to change the lineup a bit with resting players or because of extremely poor lifetime success against a pitcher, Girardi changes it all the time for little reason and to poor effect.

    Small ball is an non-existant with Girardi as with Torre. There was one game where there were back to back bunts, and frankly I don’t think Girardi had anything to do with that. Where are any base stealing attempts?

    Playing Ensburg at 3rd is painful to watch. Put Gonzalez in there even if he doesn’t hit all that well, he has better speed and a much better glove than Ensburg. Giambi is still playing terrible, and Jeter was pissed for causing him an error. Why does Girardi still put up with it? Sorry, but Giambi and Matsui have both shown they don’t really have it for defense any more. Yet Matsui can at least hit. Giambi – not so much.

    Where is Girardi with getting on Giambi for not hitting the other way. He is so pull happy. Why not make Giambi lay down a bunt to move someone over instead?

    Girardi is the wrong man as far as I am concerned. For the Pen, Torre and he are fairly equal. For small ball, the same, for the line up changes all the time, Torre has the edge (though not much of one). For the lies and expecting people to believe his explaination of them, forget it.

    The only plus is that he looks like he is awake for the games. Maybe that is some of the trouble. His micro-management of the lineup shows he will diddle with things without getting results, yet will keep doing it expecting different results. Isn’t that the classic definition of insane?

    • barry

      Ohlendorf used to be a SP therefore it makes sense he could handle a LR role.

    • ctkaiser

      We should all be pissed that in all the years he’s been here playing 1B nobody apparently has ever shown Giambi how to set his feet prior to the infielder throwing the ball. If you watch him his left foot is always set to the left rather than in front of him and a ball thrown to his right results in him usually off balance falling to the ground trying to make a routine catch.

  • Rob_in_CT

    I’ll give him a B at this point. The mistakes I can think of are:

    – refusing to go to Mo in a tie game on the road.
    – sitting Melky for no particular reason against a LHP, when Melky has been one of the team’s best hitters. It hurt the team defensively and offensively. I think there was a better day to get him a day off (Wang on the mound, perhaps, against a RHP).
    – Trusting Moose to pitch to Manny.
    – Not squeezing with 1st & 3rd, 1 out (a slumping) Jeter at the plate (Damon on 3rd) in the 8th (?) inning. I’m not big on bunting, but that was the time to do it.

    Other than that, he’s been good. It’s not his fault that Hughes and IPK imploded. If you want to blame someone other than those pitchers, blame Eiland. It’s not his fault that Robbie Cano can’t hit in April (or early May, apparently). Or that ARod and Posada got hurt.

    Ensberg is likely the team’s best option at 3B right now. I don’t think his defense has been horrible. ARod will be back soon. As for Giambi… he’s running out of time to show he’s not done. He’s driving me nuts by not hitting to the left side. The thing is, he’s done this before… he looks done for a month or two and then erupts. With the track record and the contract, he’s got a long leash. Shelley Duncan, as much as I like the guy, is a AAAA player. Betemit looked awful early. If he had hit (and hadn’t gotten pink eye – if that’s real), then I’d be agitating for Betemit at 1B. Instead, he fell on his face. If Posada comes back and cannot catch, Giambi’s playing time might vanish.

  • Jon W.

    Why does everybody complain about Girardi not going to Mo in a tie game on the road? Unless the Yankees had scored in the 10th, they were going to need to use another arm to save the game.

    As for the other stuff, yeah, Girardi has stuck with some guys (like Giambi) too long, but at least he gives his players a chance to fail. Unless you were one of “Torre’s guys”, you didn’t get that chance. Does anybody actually think Krazy Kyle would be doing this well under Torre?

  • Beau

    I really like Girardi, as a second year manager for what he’s is capable of doing. His growing pains aside we can’t expect him to be the polished manager like Joe Torre just yet. That will come with more managerial experience. This team for a long time now has been lacking discipline… i.e. Off-season workouts and someone to get in their face for unacceptable mental lapses. It may just be me, but somehow I doubt that I wasn’t the only one screaming at Torre over the television for leaving the starter in too long or over using the same damn relievers til their arms fell off. He was a great manager but this team needs a change of direction. Girardi is a very smart baseball guy, despite his lack of media charisma. I give him a “B” for now with a potential of being “A” within the next couple of years.