Pettitte, Yanks salvage the finale

Uh oh, the Yanks need a starter and Igawa pitched well...

Here’s the short recap that Mike and I came up with on IM a few minutes ago: Pettitte good. Giambi good. Millar suck. Joba good. Mariano good.

That’s quite the recipe for a win. The Yanks got a solid 6.2-inning effort from their starting pitching, some timely hitting from the offense and some solid relief work to leave Baltimore with a win.

My only gripe with this game was the way Joba Chamberlain was handled. The Yanks were loathe to use Chamberlain with a lead in an extra-innings game last night, but tonight, they were happy to use him to throw 28 pitches in 1.1 stellar relief innings before Joe Girardi did the by-the-books move and called on his closer to end the game.

When Joba came in with two outs in the seventh, I was rooting for a Goose Gossage-type 2.1-inning save. Alas. It was not to be. But Joba got his work in, and a win is a win is a win. I’ll take it.

Game Notes: With his home run tonight, Giambi has now hit 188 home runs on the Yankees. He had 187 as a member of the Oakland Athletics. It’s hard to believe; I still seemingly associate Giambi with the A’s teams from the early 2000s.

Uh oh, the Yanks need a starter and Igawa pitched well...
  • marc ack

    hey ben, wasnt the plan that joba should pitch atleast 50 pitches before next start?

    • Jamal G.

      He went to the bullpen and threw 8 warm-ups followed by 14 pitches then sat down, another 8 warm-ups and delivered a final 13 pitches to bring his grand total to 55 pitches on the night (28 in-game and 27 in the bullpen).

  • marc ack

    I thought plan was 50 or more in game?

    • Joey

      It was, but plans don’t always work out the way you want them too. BP is better than nothin’ I guess

      • Joey


  • mike

    i still don’t understand why they gave that game away last night. the point is to win and you don’t get that with hawkins. joba sitting in the dugout twiddling his thumbs. his “stretch” could have waited a day or two. bad managing.

    • Steve S

      That he wasn’t used is clearly organizational and NOT Girardi. Its clear that with him extending himself (as he did last Saturday with 40 pitches) they didn’t want to use him at all on what amounts to 2 days rest. Winning games is important but, as much as I hate to say this, a game at the end of May against Baltimore for a team one game under five hundred is NOT as important as Joba’s long term health.

      • mustang

        That must of hurt.

        • Steve S

          Ha, it does mustang.

  • BigBlueAL

    Dont know how many of you guys care about this, but at you can vote for the 5 best games in Yankees Stadium history (games only from the 70’s till present time) for a DVD that comes out later this year (already have one made for Shea Stadium if you care). Considering i own both the 1996-2001 Collectors Set and the 1977 WS complete set, im definitely buying this DVD. On a selfish note, since those DVD’s i mention already have Game 6 from the 1977 WS, Game 3 from the 1999 WS and Game 4 from the 2001 WS, dont vote for those if you do (although im pretty sure Game 6 from 1977 will be one of the Top 5)!!

    Again dont know how many of you guys buy the DVD’s (i also have the Yankeeography Mega-Set and the last 17 Yankees WS Champs DVD’s set) but if you do, check out the list and vote!!!! And if you dont care, its still cool cause they have highlights of the games you can view if you’d like.

  • TurnTwo

    on a joba note, watching him last night i grew a little frustrated with him that first inning he took over for Pettitte. He threw way too many breaking pitches. I think it was to Millar in particular where he absolutely blew him away with a fastball… like Millar wasnt even close, and he decided to come back with 2 straight sliders that were off the plate and down.

    i’m not sure how much of this is Joba trying to get the feel for all of his pitches, or if he’s just stubbornly living on the slider, but to me he’s much better when he can locate that heat first.

    i also thought he got squeezed a little bit in the 7th. but maybe it was for the better, bc it got his pitch count up a little bit.

    • Chris

      Yea but did u see how he utterly owned Jay Patton to end the 8th(or was it the 7th?…doesnt matter). Check out the pitch sequence on gameday. has a good graphic up…wow gameday had him at 100 on the final pitch.

  • Brett

    I would have liked to see him pitch the 9th. I don’t understand why they had to go to Mo there. Bullpen and in game are much different.They showed the day before that it isn’t about 1 game. He should have stayed in.

    • Andy in Sunny Daytona

      If it were spring training, I’m sure that he would have pitched. But they have Riviera for a reason. I’d rather have the win than to continue with the stretchout.

      • http://2009 Haggs

        Should have used Joba for 2 outs in the 9th then bring Mo in to finish.

        Mo gets his save (albeit a cheapy), pitches less than an inning after throwing 2 the night before, Joba throws more pitches in a game – everyone would have been happy, except for maybe the Orioles.

      • Jon W.

        Joba was pitching very well (albeit a little wild), so I don’t think there was a need to bring in Mo. Besides, since he had only thrown 28 pitches through the 8th, the only way he would have gotten up to his limit is if he struggled in the 9th, in which case they could have brought in Rivera then. Not a huge deal, but I thought bringing in Mo to start the 9th was a little unnecessary.

        • mike

          also, if Joba is on a pitch-count, they would likely have Mo warming up anyway in case he got into trouble, so once you get Mo up you might as well use him.

          further, as demonstrated by the bullpen session, they wanted Joba to et used to the up-warmup-pitch inning- sit -warmup-pitch inning, rather than simply throw 50 or so pitches in a row.

          I thought tactically it was perfect, and got across exactly what the Yanks needed to do, especially with IPK useless and an off-day to rest Mo.

          Im starting to like Joe more and more

        • steve (different one)

          right, but it was a 2 run game. if he “struggles”, you might lose. you can’t let a pitcher come in a put a few men on and then just expect Mariano to come in and strike out the side.

          i am all for letting Joba pitch, but why mess around? Mariano can come in and win you the game, then has an off-day today.

          feels like making something out of nothing.

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos

        But that’s the classic example of knee-jerk reactionism and allowing a statistic (the save) dictate your strategy, rather than what a manager should do – let your strategy create the statistics. Let’s review.

        Joba is being stretched out. The goal is for him to throw multiple innings, and somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 pitches. He had thrown only 28 pitches to that point, and had been pretty frickin dominant in the 8th. Meanwhile, Mo had pitched TWO INNINGS THE NIGHT BEFORE. Why take out Joba, who was totally dealing at that point, and who had the ability, the desire, and the organizational goal to pitch another inning just to put in the “Anointed Closer” for an inning, in a situation where the smart decision, both for the health of your bullpen, the individual health of the two pitchers involved, and the future plans of your pitching staff is to leave Joba in?

        Entering the 9th, we had Mo, who is the #1 pitcher on our staff in 2008 (starters or relievers). But already on the bump, well within his pitch count, and not even remotely fatigued or ineffective, we had our #1A pitcher. Let Joba keep getting streched, let him finish it off, let Mo have a well deserved night off.

        • steve (different one)

          Meanwhile, Mo had pitched TWO INNINGS THE NIGHT BEFORE.

          big deal.

          what evidence is there that Mariano can’t handle this?

          the argument that they are endangering Mo’s health is bullshit.

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos

            The argument isn’t that Mo couldn’t handle it. He can, and obviously, did.

            The argument is, Joba could have handled it, and that Mo, just like every other human being in the history of the world, will perform better physically if he’s well rested and not fatigued. I’ve seen enough of Joe Torre using Mo three and four days in a row to know that you may as well keep Mo fresh and at his physical peak by avoiding using him the night after he threw two innings if you have a reasonably good alternative that you have confidence in, which Joba clearly was last night.

            I’m not saying that Girardi broke Mo irreparably by pitching him one more inning last night. I am saying that a great multitude of factors–one of which is the natural and rightheaded desire to give a relief pitcher a night off after he makes an appearance, especially in a game it late May, not because he can’t throw but because him not throwing is part of a sound strategy to avoid overusing and tiring him out–pointed to leaving Joba in and giving Mo the night off being the smart decision, and that I feel Girardi made the wrong one.

            I don’t want him fired for it… I’m just disappointed in it. And I never said Joe “endangered” Mo’s health. I’m just saying that giving him the night off probably helps him physically more than having him throw is. It’s probably a small amount, but 162 small amounts over 6 months add up, don’t they?

  • Z1m

    Let Joba start on Tuesday and give you maybe 4 innings. If they’re lucky maybe even pitch into the 5th if he’s suppose to throw 65-70 pitches. He would be taking Kennedy’s turn or another call up and that’s about how many innings they were giving the Yanks anyway. Just that instead of being down 4 or 5 runs they may be leading or at least have a chance with Joba going early. Also this doesn’t screw with any of the other pitchers. They may have to use Britton in an actual game though. The key with this is hoping Joba’s control is better early so he can last. Last night his control was off early on but he seemed to find it in the 8th.

    Pettite looks like he’s getting back on track. Wang Pettite and a strong Joba looks good and Rasner and Moose in the back end could be solid the rest of the year.

    NO KEI–

  • whozat

    Girardi said last night that they didn’t use Joba Tuesday because he’d just thrown a starter-style side-session on Monday.

  • mustang

    Does anyone have an idea of how they plan to finish the game that Joba starts?
    By bullpen?
    Call up? Who?

    • mustang

      Maybe Dan Giese ?
      I don’t know.

      • mike

        likely Ramirez ( switch-up look for batters and he is good for 2 innings or so) then go into the Farnsworth/Mo end of the game.

  • Kyle

    Is it just me, or is Joba not using his Curveball and Change up at all? Is there a reason for that? I would think he would want to use them in game situations at some point, because being a starter, he will need all 4 pitches. I know he won’t rely on them as heavily as the Fastball/Slider combo, but he will still have to at a minimum show them right?

    • Steve S

      he is using it sporadically but if you think about it he probably will only throw those pitches sporadically in a real start. Its not realistic or smart to have him come in there expect him to throw 50 pitches and ask him to throw 25 of them for curves and changes. To be quite honest if he can throw them 15 times in a regular start (assuming a 100 pitch outing) he can be as dominant as any pitcher (assuming he can spot the fastball and maintain the slider for those hundred pitches). The changeup and curve will just make hitters honest. He really isnt the Mussina (in his prime type) throwing various pitches. He just needs the third pitch in case he doesnt have a good slider on a given day. His ability to spot his fastball and the velocity are what will make him dominant.

  • steve (different one)

    there is an off-day today.

    the only reason to let Joba pitch the 9th was to get him more work.

    Joba with 28 pitches under his belt probably has a 95% chance of finishing out that game.

    Mariano probably has a 99% chance of finishing out the game.

    i LOVE that they are stretching Joba to be a starter, but at the same time, Mariano gave them the best chance to win at that point.

    so what is wrong with that?

  • Z1m

    Use different combos for an inning or 2. Unless they plan on calling someone up to finally be the “long guy”

    If Joba has good control he can get into the 5 inning. Again that would be no worse than what they were getting from Kennedy or Kei. And Moose isn’t giving them much more then that. Get rid of Ensberg and carry the extra pitcher for two weeks until Joba’s where he needs to be. Ensberg isn’t playing anyway. They’re wasting a uniform on him right now.

    Do the Twins have any lefty starters they will throw this weekend. No Liriano i think?

    • A.D.

      The face a lefty, Perkins, on friday then:

      all right handed