But what about the 8th inning?!?!

Curtis & Suttle heating up
Ponson, Giese set for historic double header

So this Joba guy. He sorta sucks. He can’t win any games. He can’t pitch out of the sixth inning. And, as I said to my dad this evening, without him in the bullpen, the Yanks don’t know what to do with the 8th inning.

Wait. Wait. What are you saying? Joba pitched 6.2 shut-out innings tonight? Joba struck out seven while walking just one? Joba gave up only six hits, only one for extra bases? I’m not sure what to make of this.

Sarcasm aside, Joba pitched into the seventh tonight, going 114 pitches, and emerged with his first win as a starter. Tonight’s game against the Pirates — the team that’s scored the fifth most runs in baseball — marked Joba’s fifth start. He has now thrown 25 innings as a starter and has an ERA of 1.80. He has allowed 22 hits and has struck out 26. While the walks had been high prior to tonight, the 7:1 K:BB ratio is very encouraging. Joba — who will one day take his lumps — has arrived.

Offensively, it’s hard to complain about a 10-0 game, but it’s easy to highlight the hot Yankees. Derek Jeter went 3 for 3 to raise his average to .286. The Captain is now working on a 13-game hitting streak, and he’s batting .359 with an OBP around .400 during that stretch. That’s more like it.

Bobby Abreu broke out of his Nick Blackburn-induced slump in a big way, going 3 for 5 with 4 RBIs. Robinson Cano is now 14 for his last 33 (.424) and finds himself just .013 batting average points behind Melky Cabrera, who has done quite well in the leadoff spot over the last two days.

In the end, it boils down to one thing: After Tuesday’s 12-5 debacle, tonight was just what the Yankees needed. They jumped out to a two-run lead after the top of the first and never looked back. They got Joba his first win, and the guys who haven’t been hitting did tonight. With Mike Mussina going later this evening, I’m feeling pretty good about this game after a bad first night in Pittsburgh.

Curtis & Suttle heating up
Ponson, Giese set for historic double header
  • Chris

    My only concern with tonight is that he threw 114 pitches. That’s a lot of pitches for a young pitcher (see Prior, Mark).

    • http://rh-p.com Ryan

      Didn’t look like it phased him at all. He looked strong and kept it in the mid 90’s all the way through.

      • Manimal

        his last pitch was 97 I believe… Ill check gameday.

        • Manimal

          Yeah, 96.

      • Chris

        The problem is not maintaining velocity in this game. The issue is long term injury risk. I have no doubt that he could throw 150 or 160 pitches (once he’s built up to that), but what would it do to his arm next season and beyond?

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos

          114 pitches… Just for safety’s sake, let’s go ahead and shut him down for the season.

          • Andy In Sunny Daytona Beach

            I would also endorse a Tommy John surgery, just to be safe.

    • A.D.

      Obv they didn’t need him too keep going, so my guess is they wanted some more stretch, that won’t be normal and that they had been monitoring him closely

  • Manimal

    I think all the Joba-in-the-pen creatures can go hide now.

    How bout that Shawn Chacon guy? Grabbing his GM by the neck, throwing him to the ground and jumping ontop of him??

    • http://knickerbockerchatter.blogspot.com/ Bruno

      Chacon and Ponson roomates during their second tours with Yanks? Do I hear BUNK-BEDS?

      • yanks99

        I love Chacon. I want him back on the Yanks.

        • B

          No thanks.

      • jsbrendog

        that would be the best reality tv show ever. add in macho man randy savage somehow and youve got emmy written all over it

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos

        Chacon and Ponson with bunkbeds?


    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

      Yeah, just got home and turned on SportsCenter when I heard it, shocking to say the least.

  • Chip

    Beautiful game by Joba. You didn’t mention that he had a sacrifice and walked as well so he’s doing it all. I’m hoping he gets a hit against the Mets for all the talking he’s done about his hitting

    • Rich

      According to Pete Abe, he isn’t scheduled to pitch:

      Game 1 Friday: Giese vs. Pelfrey
      Game 2 Friday: Ponson vs. Martinez
      Saturday: Pettitte vs. Santana
      Sunday: Rasner vs. Perez

  • andrew

    jesus christ, outside of saturday those are some of the worst pitching matchups ive ever seen.

    • TurnTwo

      they actually arent as bad as you think.

      while Pelfrey has thrown surprisingly well this season, and Johan is still Johan, Pedro cant get thru any lineup the second time around anymore, and Oliver Perez can either be the best pitcher in the league, or walk the balkpark on any given day, and has done the latter much more often this season than the former.

  • http://conservationvalue.blogspot.com Jon G

    Let’s also not lose sight of Ohlendorf looking sharp tonight – I think he can be a force in the pen.

    How long before we see Hawkins and perhaps even Farnsworth out and Robertson and Melancon up? We’ll have to see whether Edwar can turn it around or whether he continues to slump and they see if Cox is a more reliable option…

    Lots to look forward to in the 7th and 8th between now and 7/31…

    Starters – I’m excited to see how IPK and Aceves do in their upcoming starts!

    • Todd

      What has Ohlendorf ever done for you to think that he can be a “force?” Where is his history of success for you to hold onto this belief. All I see is a guy who is very hittable but very much beloved, for whatever reason.

      • stefan

        I would think the whole “Ohlendorf looking sharp tonight” thing, meaning he breezed through 1.1 innings and tallied 3 Ks, shows that he has the potential to be really good. That’s just me though. I mean, I must be crazy for thinking a pitcher who does well one night can do well another night.

        • http://2009 Haggs

          Jury’s out on Ohlendorf. But an opinion could be formed one way or the other if Girardi ever decides how and when to use him.

          It seems like Girardi forgets he’s out there sometimes.

          Certainly liked what I saw last night.

  • Adrian-Retire21

    Yes dominating a team going for there 16th straight losing season and are 12 games back in there division…in the N.L.JOba will be a ace but until he and Hughes,and Kennedy like Wang can give us 200 innings (which they won’t)this and next year no Ace should be utter.A 200 inning pitcher,and a set-up man are needed to help these pitchers develop so like this year we don’t throw them to the wolves like Chase Wright second start out of AA in Fenway.Wonder where he is now.

    Hopefully they can trade Kennedy for something useful.THe whole “Save Big Three” is overrated anyway it should be “SAve the Big Two”.Joba is a great pitcher but not the anchor of this staff.If thats the case lets call Joba Mr.Prior.Because the Pittsburg Pirates are a little differant then the Tigers and Red Sox.

    • Joltin’ Joe

      I agree. Hughes is looking like the potential (and inevitable failure) than happens in the 1st round, Joba is looking like a HoF and Kennedy is looking like a bucket of chum.

      But honestly, his upside is very limited compared to the other 2 (IPK’s) and if he is the main piece in a big deal Cashman shouldn’t get cold feet. He’s a #3 tops.

      • Joltin’ Joe

        To clarify the Hughes comment, I meant that one of them is bound to fail at the big league level, and he’s definitely not shown command in his MLB time.

      • B

        Dude, are you kidding me? Hughes has great stuff. Look at what he did in the playoffs! Not to mention, he is the youngest player on the Yankees at 21. Joba and Hughes are keepers, plain and simple!

      • Jersey

        Overreact much?

    • Count Zero

      Wow! Such negativity…

      To date the guy has thrown 72.2 MLB innings. In that span he has given up 50 hits, 12 earned runs, 3 HR and struck out 90. And you think this guy isn’t ready to be in the show? I think the MLB hitters he has struck out would probably beg to differ. What do you want him working on in AAA? Making MiLB hitters look foolish? Or did you want him to stay in the pen and never develop as a starter?

      I’ll grant you 72 innings isn’t a hell of a lot, but right now Joba looks like he has at least the potential to be the best Yankee starter since Ron Guidry in his prime. I can’t for the life of me see what there is to be negative about. He may not be the “anchor” of the staff today, but he sure looks like he could be very soon.

      As Ben pointed out, the Pirates are 5th in runs scored in all of MLB — without a DH. That’s more runs than the Tigers or the Rays without a DH. Their problem is they have given up more runs than any team except Texas — it’s not their hitting.

    • E-ROC

      Just killed my buzz.

      • steve (different one)

        why are you guys replying to this moron?

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos

          I’m still trying to figure out how he’s able to type a whole post with less than a handful of typos and errors using his asshole.

          I mean, how do you fit the keyboard up there?

    • http://yankeesetc.blogspot.com/ Travis G.

      you’re a Sawx fan, yes?

  • E-ROC

    Good to see Jeter drive the ball out of the infield. The GiDPs were getting annoying. I hope he keeps it up.

    Justin Christian is fairing well since being called up.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

    Question, as some of you may know I am probably the biggest opponent of that gritty, gutty bullshit people like speak about, but how come when A-Rod does things that is considered gritty and gutty he never gets credit for it? Such as employing a takeout slide to disrupt Jack Wilson’s throw that directly lead to the Yankees’ first two runs of the game. If Dustin Pedroia did this on ESPN’s telecast last night the announcers would have waxed poetic about his “intangibles” and all that other bullshit. So do you have to have less than stellar talent to be considered gritty and gutty?

    • Rich

      The level of resentment toward him as a result of his contract is apparently blinding to mediots. Add in ESPN’s anti-Yankee p.o.v and the result is selective perception.

    • TurnTwo

      that was a great play by ARod to break up the DP.

    • http://2009 Haggs

      Pete Abe gave him props for it in his game thread. Does that count?

      • steve (different one)


        “Alex Rodriguez made a great play to break up that double play which lead to two runs. Asked after the game, Alex said he learned to play hard by watching manager Joe Girardi and then doing the exact opposite. Also, I heard a rumor that Girardi told Alex to never run hard again. Girardi was later seen making out with LaTroy Hawkins in a bathroom stall. While drowing puppies in the toilet. Joe Torre could not be reached for comment as he was saving a carload of nuns from a forest fire.”

    • Todd

      Jamal, while I agree with your point, I ask: by raising this point didn’t you just give him credit for gutty play?

    • Steve S

      I think the Arod detractors are all hiding and they are slowly slipping away. It was one of those media fads that the “casual fans” jumped on. Just like the Joba in the 8th inning guys will slowly fade away (because there is no accountability i sports). I mean besides the obvious, since Alex has come back its become abundantly clear how important he is. Who, knew, all he needed to do was miss some time in 2005 and let the team crumble and people would have loved him.

      He is a target because he sells papers, just like Joba will be for the next couple of months. And in October if Alex has a rough time, then they will all come out from hiding (unjustifiably). Same thing will apply to the 8th inning idiots if the Yankees blow a game in the 8th inning in October and Joba has a rough start in the same series.

      • nmc

        I think the ARod-hate thing has passed, mostly because he stopped caring so much about his image. When it ceased to get to him, it lost its effect.

    • A.D.

      Superstars rarely get credit for that type of thing since they’re expected to put the ball out of the park, or at least get the big basehit…and I mean with the Red Sox thing, obv ESPN, the creator of the nation, will be all over that

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos

      You have to either be

      A) a Red Sox player,
      B) not a Yankee player,
      C) less than 5’9″,
      D) David Eckstein, or
      E) all of the above

      in order to be either gritty or gutty.

      In a related story, gritty, gutty Dustin Pedroia once ate a whole cake before his friends could tell him there was a stripper in it.

      For Diamond Cutters, I’m Peter Gammons, ESPN.

      • http://2009 Haggs

        It’s because the Red Sox are two time recent champs and have a plethora of white guys (although I’ve never heard anyone call Drew gutty and gritty)

        The Yankees used to get called gutty and gritty all the time, when in reality they just had a roster full of very good players.

        To the victors go the gutty/gritty labels.

  • stuart

    Jamal on the slide tonight by Arod you have a point..

    that slide by arod really really helped.

    I wonder if there is a talent and racial element to the gritty gutty arguement??

    I am a white guy but I don’t notice many minorites get that label…..Homer Bush was never labeled gritty and gutty but pedroia and about every smallish white SS and 2B get that label…

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

      Oh it is definitely a racial thing. It may or may not be on purpose (could be a case by case thing with the labeler) but it is racial in my mind, again purposefully or not. FJM pointed it out. They basically did an all intangibles/gritty/gutty/old-school team and an all slacker/soft/selfish team. The results were astounding racially. Only Derek Jeter was the non-white guy on the former team (FJM did make a funny point of how he is half white but thinking about it more, it may not have been all that much of a joke) and the entire of the latter team was made up of Latinos and African-Americans. That can’t be a coincidence.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

        Sorry, two non-whites made the list of the gamer team, Derek Jeter and Torii Hunter. The only white player to make the non-gamer list was Barry Zito. And to classify it was not FJM’s personal list but one they summarized from a ludicrous article.


    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

      Lastly, I do agree with your other point about the talent factor. I think it is stupid that a player’s skill level should play a part in how his toughness or “hard-nosedness” is perceived.

  • Mike P

    Please use the same headline every time Camberlain pitches well for the rest of his carrier. It’s a bit childish, but it has to be rubbed in the faces of all those Joba-in-the-bullpen idiots! Please gloat more!

  • Geno

    I wonder what Damon has to say about Joba now?

    • steve (different one)

      i think he has admitted he was wrong.

  • Matt M.

    What a horrible week for Francessa. Joba shines in the starting role. and bronson arroyo got murdered 1ip. 11h. 10r


    seriously though…thank GOD that joba has had some early success as a starter. (i knew he would always be successful long term with his command and pitches) but had he gotten off to some rocky starts…that crowd would be bitching again for him to return to the 8th. at least now he’s solidifyed himself in the starter’s role

    • steve (different one)

      it really is amazing how the people who were against this have changed their minds but for all the wrong reasons.

      as Kay keeps pointing out, everything now thinks the Yankees were brilliant to move Joba when they did because Wang got hurt.

      no guys, if Wang was healthy, this was still the right move.

      and if Wang was healthy, the Yankees would be in really good shape.


      • LiveFromNewYork

        Joe Girardi addressed this last night. He said no one can replace CMW and that Joba Chamberlain is pitching in Joba Chamberlain’s spot.

        I’m so glad the Joba-in-the-pen people are quiet. I don’t care why, actually.

        I have a close friend who was a Joba-in-the-pen advocate and I said, dude how can you make the argument without all the data? Let’s see what he can DO as a starter and then we’ll have a debate.

        Well now that we have seen it, no debate.

        SCORE. Thank you Joba.

        If he stays healthy, I predict Cy Youngs in this kid’s future.

        • nmc

          why not this year? If he racks up a bunch more wins?

      • http://2009 Haggs

        That may be true, but a good portion of the “you’re an idiot if you think Joba shouldn’t be made a starter immediately” crowd have used Wang’s injury to say, “See, this is why we need him in the rotation.”

        Can’t have it both ways. Wang’s injury has nothing to do with the move.

        The same would be true if (knock on every available piece of wood) Mo had gone down with an injury similar to Wang’s after Joba had left for the rotation. The Joba for bullpen crowd would be screaming bloody murder.

        • Ben

          If MO(KNOCK KNOCK) goes down with an injury, everyone will be screaming bloody murder, not just the Joba for bullpen crowd

          • TurnTwo


        • steve (different one)

          my biggest beef with the Joba in the pen argument was the people arguing that they shouldn’t move him b/c we didn’t know how he would do as a starter and we already know he is a good reliever.

          so what? if he fails you could move him back. you can’t really do it the other way around unless you stretch him out now.

          also, you had people simply ignoring his entire track record in the minors as a starter. “how do we know he will maintain his velocity in the later innings?”

          well, if you did any sort of homework you would know there were scouting reports from last year that marveled at his ability to maintain his velocity.

        • LiveFromNewYork

          Not me. I wanted Joba there with a healthy Wang or not.

          Okay, that was a bad sentence but you know what I mean.

        • bru

          you are wrong.you do not take a pitcher with 4 major leage ready pitches or more if you count different variations of his fasballs and 2 of those his fb and slider are the best in baseball and waste him in the pen.you only put a pitcher like joba in the pen if injuries are a concern or he doesn’t have enough pitches.starting pitching is more important then the pen and always will be.anybody can pitch the 8th,just keep putting different pitchers in the role until you find the right pitcher,it always works out for every team.the yankees have wang,joba as a 1,2 punch in 2009 if they can get one more great pitcher then they will be tough to beat,pettitte and or moose probably will be back for another year for less money so wang,joba,pettitte moose and maybe hughes or a free agent or trade.i would let moose go because his numbers are not as good as pettitte’s and try to get an ace like weeks or cc and they will have (an ace),wang,,joba,pettitte,hughes so the top 3 will be great and 2 excellant 4th and 5th with brackman and others in the mix.can you imagine cc,wang,joba as 1-3 that is as good as it gets with pettitte and hughes,unbeatable.let giambi go,too much money,sign abraeu for a little less money,get a real first baseman or move posada to first and get a catcher,trade melky and give gardner a shot,dh matsui for the last year,use jc or ajax as the 4th outfielder,trade farns,hawk,bring up robertson,cox,melancon,send edwar and or olendorf down and see how good humberto sanchez might be and maybe bring him up.

          • steve (different one)

            you are wrong.you do not take a pitcher with 4 major leage ready pitches or more if you count different variations of his fasballs and 2 of those his fb and slider are the best in baseball and waste him in the pen.

            who is wrong? everyone here is saying this.

          • http://2009 Haggs

            Good god, the enter key is your friend. Use it, and use it often.

            For the record I don’t like the manner in which the Yanks moved Joba, but I completely support Joba as a member of the starting rotation.

            My point is, it’s entirely possible for a smart person to argue for Joba’s presence in the bullpen and not be an idiot. Hard to do, but possible. I’ve seen it done.

            And, while I do support Joba as a starter the Yankee bullpen is a catastrophe waiting to happen, particularly in light of the thick-headed manager charged with using it. It’s a ticking time bomb.

            Lastly, Joba for starter is the right move, but it’s entirely possible to advocate this position and give all the wrong reasons why that is so. There are dummies on both sides of this argument.

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos

            I am sure your post was really brilliant but I’m not going to read it until you start using the space bar.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

          Strangest thing, I actually had a dream last night that MO suffered an elbow injury, very weird. Dream didn’t last long enough for me to find out what it was but I also dreamt a friend of mine texted me somebody used the word “mega” when talking about the injury.

          • Chris

            My dream last night was that Joba threw 160 pitches and blew out his arm…

      • TurnTwo

        to me, even more of a reason to go out and make a deal to bring in a real MLB pitcher to add to this rotation.

        with Joba, Andy, and Moose, you’ve got a great 2, 3, 4… but we’re still missing that #1. with a #1, this team is gonna score enough runs to get to play in the postseason.

        but you cant watch the yankees throw Geise, Rasner, and Ponson every 3 days and still have that feeling.

        • TurnTwo

          well 3 out of every 5, but you get what i mean…

          • steve (different one)

            luckily for the yankees, #1 starters are so easy to find.

            i agree with the idea that they need to bump Giese and Ponson out of the rotation. and quickly.

            but you are basically saying the yankees need to trade for Sabathia. and he might not even be on the market.

            we have to accept the fact that a deal for Sabathia is a long shot.

            we have to hope that Joba continues to pitch like a #1 and that someone like Aceves or Horne can come up and improve the #4/5 spot.

            that is a far more realistic scenario.

            if the indians decide to trade Sabathia, there are going to be a bunch of teams involved in the bidding. it’s going to be really difficult for the yankees to get him before 2009.

            • TurnTwo

              oh, i know Sabathia isnt even technically on the market, and there arent many pitchers that fit this bill that are top of the rotation quality and available…

              just kind of wishing out loud.

              i do think Cashman will stick to his guns and hope Horne. Aceves, or McCutcheon can help out and patch things together, and then hold out at the deadline for a reasonable upgrade w/o unloading top prospects or scrapping the long term plan.

            • LiveFromNewYork

              What has Giese done to deserve a bump out? He pitched well at Yankee Stadium. He was the onloy one who played well.

              • TurnTwo

                but we cant possibly think a journeyman pitcher like Giese is going to stick around and be this good for the next 2 months.

                he’s a nice story, but if you are a playoff team, you have to do better than Dan Giese.

                • Chris

                  There are a lot of player like Giese who could be good pitchers in the majors for one or two years (their career best years). They often get overlooked because the next guy has a higher ceiling, even if he’s not as good right now.

                  Obviously Giese is not a prospect, and probably won’t be playing in the majors in 2010, but ride him now while you can. Just think, in 2005 it was Aaron Small and Shawn Chacon that drove us to the playoffs…

              • steve (different one)

                the point is that the Yankees probably can’t get to the playoffs if 40% of their rotation consists of Rasner and Giese/Ponson.

                Giese did pitch well. i would love to see him keep it up. but just like Rasner, once the league adjusts, i don’t know if he’ll last.

                it would be great if he did, i am just skeptical.

                the Yankees are going to have upgrade at least of those spots in the rotation somehow if they are going to make a push.

                that could mean Horne, Aceves, Kennedy, maybe Hughes eventually and maybe (laughing) Carl Pavano. it could be a trade. but unless the yankees are going all in for Sabathia or another difference maker, i don’t really see the point of making a trade for a Blanton type.

                • A.D.

                  Giese does have a .68 era, obv not going to last, but let him pitch till he fails

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos

                  Nobody is talking about not letting him pitch until he fails. We’re talking about not having no option to turn to other than Kei Igawa after he does fail.

                  Making Joba a starter was smart, independent of anything else. The fact that we needed more quality starters is true, independent of CMW’s injury. The fact that we know we shouldn’t count on guys like Giese, Rasner, Karstens, and Ponson but should be actively looking for more quality starters is true, independent of anything else.

        • Geno

          Patience. We’ve got better options healing. Kennedy and Horne are right around the corner. Hughes and Wang a little farther down the road. No need to panic and trade the farm for an old rental. Cashman’s plan is working, it just needs time.

          • Chris

            You forgot Pavano, who’s due back around the same time as Hughes and Wang.

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos

            Yes, all five of those (Wang, Hughes, Kennedy, Horne, and Pavano) are better options than Giese, Rasner, Karstens, and Ponson.

            But no, none of those five are better options than Sabathia, if he should become available. None of those five are healthy, and only Wang has been effective at the ML level. At this point, it would be nothing more than wishful thinking to expect that Hughes, Kennedy, Horne, or Pavano would be better than the current back end of our rotation.

  • TurnTwo

    btw, where’s stuart with his Jeter-is-washed-up schtick today?

  • LiveFromNewYork

    Scenes from the Thruway:

    Last night I rent a car to drive up to Albany for work. Why I didn’t take the train is probably because I was working too late to get one … figured driving up would be quicker/easier.

    I leave the city around 7:30. The West Side Highway is cruising. Aside from after I get moving 3 idiots all doing 40 decide to drive side by side. I now know where those backups come from. I kept looking in my rear view not believing what I was seeing. A backup for no freaking reason.

    but I digress…I zoom over the GWB (amazing! where is everyone?) up the Palisades and onto the NYS Thruway.

    Except for the occasional idiot going 60 in the left lane (the limit is 65), traffic is moving.

    I pass the rest stop between exits 15 and 16 and then traffic comes to a complete standstill.

    Traffic is NOT moving so I’m listening to the game and trying to be mellow about the whole thing.

    After about a half hour people are out of their cars, walking their dogs, feeding their babies, freaking out, and communing like we’ve all just decided to stop and have a chat.

    Several people have the game on and there is one guy who is saying, NO MATTER WHAT JOBA DOES, that he should ahve stayed in the pen. We have no 8th inning guy, he’s saying. People, total strangers, are screaming at him.

    After about an hour people started moving along the left hand breakdown lane (even though people had gathered there) and were turning around. Obviously traffic was also stopped cold on the other side because there was not a car in sight.

    They are doing somemthing at the Harriman toll plaza (looks like another off ramp) and who knows how long traffic would be stopped.

    I had GPS so I took the chance and changed directions, got off on 17 going north the backway and eventually landed in Albany.

    Highlights and thoughts from the evening:

    There are still people who have Joba in the pen mentality no matter how wrong they are. And they will argue on a highway with complete strangers about it AS Joba is pitching a scoreless game and striking out batters left and right.

    The NYS Thruway Authority sucks

    People who cause traffic jams on the west side highway by driving slow in the left hand lane suck

    Suzyn Waldman and John Sterling are worse than most things but better than traffic at a complete standstill. Suzyn did get on my nerves when she said how can Jeter and Arod be overrated AND the two players most people would want on their team? Suzyn doesn’t know that most people are idiots because she belongs to that erstwhile majority.

    Joba should remain a starter.

    I am an excellent driver.

    Albany is depressing.

    • Ben C

      While I don’t completely agree with it, there is still a good argument to be made to have Joba in the pen as that solid 8th inning guy. Look at the championship teams in the late 90’s, the pen was anchored by great eighth inning guys (MO in 96, nelson stanton and graeme lloyd in 98-00) and once the game got to the 7th/8th the game was OVER. What worries me is if we end up seeing the Red Sox in the postseason, they have so many come from behind wins that if games get to the 7th or 8th inning and were up 3-1, 4-2, then the Red Sox are going to expect to win, and Farnsworth is going to expect to blow it, and it is not going to be pleasant. I still think Joba should be a starter because I think he is the next Roger Clemens(except without the whole steroids thing) but I’m just saying there is an argument to be made to want to have that solid 7th/8th inning presence.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

        No there isn’t. To be in a position to even use your 7th or 8th inning guys you need to have a lead. That Yankee dynasty was built around starting pitching. People like to bring up the Mariano Rivera and John Wetteland comp but I don’t buy that. Starting pitching like defense in the NFL wins championships. You need other factors of course but it all starts with starting pitching.

        • Ben C

          How can you not say there is at least an argument there. Papelbon was projected to be a starter for the Red Sox but they moved him into the bullpen and he has been dominant, doing the same thing Joba would be diong for us if we didn’t have MO. That has obviously worked out well for them, so there is something to be said to having someone solid in late innings. Grant it, the Red Sox had a lot more flexibility because of their depth in starting pitching, but I still don’t think you can conclusively say that having Joba as a solid starter once a week is that much better then having him as a shutdown setup man 3 times a week.

          • steve (different one)

            What worries me is if we end up seeing the Red Sox in the postseason, they have so many come from behind wins that if games get to the 7th or 8th inning and were up 3-1, 4-2, then the Red Sox are going to expect to win, and Farnsworth is going to expect to blow it, and it is not going to be pleasant.

            and HOW did they get to the 7th of 8th inning up 3-1 or 4-2?

            who pitched these first 6-7 innings of 1-2 run baseball?

            please don’t bring up Papelbon. when they tried making him a starter in ST, he started losing velocity after 3 innings.

            it’s a complete red herring. if Papelbon projected as a #1 starter like Joba, they would make him a starter.

            • Ben C

              Playing the Red Sox in a playoff series, how many games will be close going into the late innings? Probably more than 1. Unless you throw Joba into the 1 or 2 slot(which they probably would not do in favor of veterans like Pettite, Moose, and Wang), Joba has a much bigger impact on the series coming into several late inning games to hold on to leads or keep games close then he would in one start. Again, I want to reiterate, I think Joba is a starter no question because in the long run of a season a big time starter adds a consistency you can’t get out of the bullpen. But if you’re going to say that he would be more valuable in the postseason in the rotation, I would have to disagree with you. To say that there is no argument is just ridiculous.

              • tommiesmithjohncarlos

                Ben C, I hate to use personal attacks, but if you honestly believe there’s a valid argument for keeping Joba in the pen when he has the ability to be a starter – something Mo Rivera and Jon Papelbon don’t – you’re an idiot. Disagree all you want, no matter what the scenario – postseason, regular season, whatever – starters pitch more innings than relievers. Good teams put good pitchers out there for as many innings as they can. That’s how you win ballgames.

                There is no point in debating this. There is no closer who is ever more valuable than a top of the rotation starter. Period, end of sentence.

              • Yankee1010

                Good God. I can’t believe there are still some of you out there. Are you wearing your helmet?

          • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

            Comparing Papelbon to Joba is akin to a straw-man argument. Papelbon was a B+ pitching prospect in the Red Sox system as a starter. Not to knock him, but he has two top pitches and that’s it. Joba was an A/A+ pitching prospect in not only the Yanks’ system but in all of baseball with four top pitches and a track record of great success.

            Papelbon is very well suited for his role as a closer. This isn’t to knock Papelbon the pitcher. I have a lot of respect for what he’s done out of the Sox bullpen (and no respect for his general buffoonery), but Joba is a whole lot better.

            • ChrisS

              Not to get drawn into this absurd thread, but I’m just adding that unlike Joba, Papelbon was a closer in college. The Sox tried stretching him out a starter, but found he worked a lot better as a closer.

      • A.D.

        And the White Sox won a WS essentially not using the bullpen…

        • Ben C

          You’re right, they’re bullpen was trash.


          Look at those ERA’s, they’re all huge, how did they ever close out games.

          They were awful in the world series too: 3 runs in 13 innings? Man how did they win the series with such a bad bullpen?

        • Ben C

          You’re right, their bullpen was trash.


          Look at those ERA’s, they’re all huge, how did they ever close out games.

          They were awful in the world series too: 3 runs in 13 innings? Man how did they win the series with such a bad bullpen?

          • steve (different one)

            except he NEVER said they were bad.

            he said they didn’t USE the bullpen.

            and relatively speaking, he is right.

            look at the ALCS:


            5 games, 4 complete games, ONE relief inning.

            that’s what he meant.

            • Ben C

              So they won the ALCS without a bullpen and it was because every pitcher on their staff had a career year. That doesn’t negate the solid play the bullpen put up throughout the regular season and world series, and it doesn’t prove that solid 7th/8th/9th inning guys don’t play a major role in teams winning championships.

              • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

                They play a role but not a major one. Starting pitching is ultimately way more valuable than relievers. And if you count up the number of high-leverage innings these late-inning relievers pitch, the numbers will actually be lower than you’d think. It’s really not a debate. Joba is much more valuable to the Yankees as a front-line starter than as an 8th inning reliever.

                • Ben C

                  I agree with you, but to say there is no argument or that whoever thinks that is “retarded” is …retarded…

                • LiveFromNewYork

                  Its a Ben-off.

                • steve (different one)

                  sure, but the guy who said that is not the same one you are arguing with.

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos

                  No, Ben C, it is retarded. Having a discussion like “Should we bat Jeter leadoff or in the 2 hole?” is a valid discussion, because both sides have merit (not equal merit, perhaps, but merit nonetheless.)

                  Having a discussion like “Should we have Jeter play everyday and get 600 AB’s, or use him as the ultimate pinch hitter where he gets one at bat every game, in the most crucial of situations?” is a retarded discussion, because the second option is in every way, shape, and form a less effective way to create a winning team. The second position only holds merit as a considerable option if the first position is untenable.

                • http://2009 Haggs

                  What’s retarded is that analogy.

                  Welcome to the “I know Joba should be a starter, but don’t ask me to enter into a debate about it” group.

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos

                  Explain to me how the analogy is retarded, please. I’d love to hear it.

                  Thinking that it’s a valid argument to strategically use Joba as a bullpen weapon because he can impact more games by being used more frequently in “high-leverage situations” is highly analogous to thinking that it would be a valid argument were someone to claim that we should strategically use Jeter (or any other Yankee position player) as a pinch-hitting weapon because he can impact more games by being used more frequently in high leverage situations.

                  It’s hyperbolic (and intentionally so), but not retarded. The hyperbole is used to draw attention to how retarded the initial premise is.

                  And I’m not claiming I don’t want to enter into a debate about it, i’m just tired of debating something so patently ridiculous.

                • http://yankeesetc.blogspot.com/ Travis G.

                  no, the analogy is valid.

                  should Arod be used as the ultimate pinch-hitter because you can control exactly when he gets those ABs (high leverage situations)? would you take your best hitter and reduce his ABs by two-thirds? of course not. so why do it with (potentially) your best pitcher?

                  Ben C, who would your 5-man rotation be right now if Joba’s relieving?

                • http://2009 Haggs

                  If I need to explain it then you’re worse off than I thought.

                  I could go on for a while here, but in an effort to make other people feel like their opinions are retarded you are making yourself look silly.

                  There is no comparison to be made, regardless of how hyperbolic it was intended to be, between a pitcher going from starter to setup man and an everyday player – 9 innings, every game, offense and defense – becoming a pinch hitter.

                  You have the higher ground on logic – Joba should indeed be a starter – but when you’re defense of this position is senseless you might want to think twice about calling other people’s opnions retarded.

                  Just a suggestion.

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos

                  yeah, sorry, i don’t buy it. you don’t get off the hook that easy.

                  You claimed my analogy was retarded. Demonstrate how.

                • http://2009 Haggs

                  I need to demonstrate how your analogy is retarded, yet you call other people retarded and back your claim with a retarded analogy. A little bit ironic, dont you think?

                  Last August, Joba was used as a setup man, and for two months the Yanks were the best team in baseball. If Joba were available to start, the Yanks might have been even better, they might have been worse – we’ll never know.

                  But when Joba was used as a setup man, the Yankees played their best baseball of the season by far. The Yankees’ long term future is best served using Joba as a starter. But as they showed last year, they could still win tons of games using him to setup Mo.

                  I think it could be argued that if Wang and Hughes were both healthy, the Yankees would have their best chance to win the WS this year with Joba in the pen full time this season. Short sighted thinking yes, but also more W’s in ’08.

                  Now take an everyday player like your example, Jeter, and convert him to a pinch hitter. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that the Yankees would be much less successful in both the short and long term.

                  I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any further questions.

                • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

                  “I think it could be argued that if Wang and Hughes were both healthy, the Yankees would have their best chance to win the WS this year with Joba in the pen rotation full time this season.”

                  I fixed that for you.

                  I can’t believe you would still say that even after watching Joba’s transition into the rotation. Starting pitching wins championships. Eighth inning guys do not win championships. This isn’t a debate; it’s a fact.

                  A rotation with Joba makes the Yankees that much better.

                • http://2009 Haggs

                  It’s certainly not an argument I’d defend to the death but….

                  Wang, Pettitte. Moose and healthy Hughes would be stronger than most rotations, and Joba to Mo would be the strongest back end of the bullpen.

                  I love Joba the starter, but the bullpen (especially the way Girardi uses it) without him is not championship caliber, and I don’t think it can be fixed until next spring, when roster spots will be available and a few more kids will be ready.

                  Hope I’m wrong, but the Farns and Edwar isn’t doing it for me, and I just don’t see Girardi giving the right people the opportunity to plug the leak Joba’s departure created.

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos

                  Okay, Haggs, let me give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you just didn’t read the comments that Ben C. made that I was responding to. It happens to the best of us.

                  Ben C. made a claim that there’s a valid argument to keep Joba in the pen. Not for a short term scenario over the last two months of a pennant run on a team that already had 5 viable, healthy (if not necessarily good) starters in Wang, Pettitte, Mussina, Clemens, and Hughes (plus Kennedy, Rasner, and DeSalvo) and not as part of a plan to get Joba a taste of the big leagues knowing full and well that the long term plan is to keep him on track to be a starting pitcher… No, Ben C. said that there’s a valid argument that the team could be better with Joba in the 8th inning PERMANENTLY, based on the success of the team during the title years (although he didn’t mention that the Yankees had outstanding starting pitching during those title years as well) and based on the influence that Mo and Jon Papelbon have had on their teams. Again, Ben C’s argument, even though he himself claimed to disagree with it, is that there may be good reason to keep Joba in the bullpen permanently.

                  I said that that argument is retarded, and it is. 99% of the baseball world agrees with me; only you and well known idiots like Mike and the Mad Dog disagree. Rather than rehash the rather well-settled point that the argument is retarded (which I and others here have successfully stated ad nauseam), I created an analogous situation and illustrated how retarded it would be. You claimed I was retarded for making that analogy. I asked you to explain why my analogy was retarded. You responded by not discussing my analogy, but rather by conflating the original argument to say something different than what Ben C. was stating and by making points that have nothing to do with what either he or I said (like that if Wang and Hughes were healthy, blah blah.)

                  And then you close your “argument” with this nugget: “Now take an everyday player like your example, Jeter, and convert him to a pinch hitter. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that the Yankees would be much less successful in both the short and long term.” That was exactly my point, and thank you for restating it. Let me put it in your form so you can see how you basically agree with what I was saying:

                  “Take a starting pitcher, like Chien Ming Wang, and convert him to an 8th inning specialist. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that the Yankees would be much less successful in both the short term and the long term.”

                  Take Josh Beckett and turn him into Jon Papelbon’s setup guy.
                  Take Johan Santana and turn him into BIlly Wagner’s setup guy.
                  Take Albert Pujols and turn him into a pinch hitter.
                  Take Any Good Player X and turn him into a specialist that sees the field less.

                  All those teams would also be much less successful in both the short term and the long term if they made those utterly stupid moves, and we would be much less successful in both the short and the long term if we took Joba and either kept him in the pen or put him back in the pen. Joba was a starting pitching prospect, and now he’s a pretty damn successful starting pitching prospect. The fact that he was dominant in an 8th inning setup role means jack squat ultimately, because bullpen guys no matter how dominant they may be, are always always always less important than dominant starting pitchers, just like pinch hitters, no matter how dominant they may be, are always always always less important than dominant everyday players. If either of these two simple and yet incontrovertible facts, or the fairly simple and straightforward analogy I made about these facts seem counterintuitive to you, then you need better intuition.

              • Yankee1010

                No, Ben. It’s pretty conclusive that you’re probably wiping your drool off of your shirt.

  • bru

    trade kennedy,melky,tabata,horne for cc.the yankees can have cc,wang,joba,pettitte,moose,hughes and in 2009 they probably will have cc,wang,joba,pettitte,hughes,very nice.they don’t need kennedy with hughes,brackman and other great prospects,they say brackman can be as good or better than joba.http://thebutler83.wordpress.com/2008/03/14/andrew-brackmans-going-to-be-a-monster/.gardner,jc,ajax can easilly replace melky and tabata and horne has no place in the future rotation.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

      No offense man but punctuation and grammar can go a long way into readers taking your point seriously.

      As to what you’re saying, Ian Kennedy is a Major League ready arm. You can not make a flat conclusion on Kennedy based on the three great starts he had in 2007 at the Major League or the starts he had here in 2008. He was not drafted with the Yankees’ #1 overall pick in the 2006 draft for no reason. He did not completely own the Minor Leagues and rightfully earned a cameo in the Major Leagues in 2007. Young players struggle when they come up, baseball unlike any other sport is a sport of adjustments. Not everybody can be Justin Verlander, Tim Lincecum or Joba Chamberlain and own guys when they first come up. Give him time.

      As for Jose Tabata and Alan Horne, that is just not fair.

  • Yankee1010

    In many ways, I use a person’s opinion on the Joba starter/reliever topic as a main factor in determining whether or not he is retarded.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=594331910 Jamal G.

      As do I my friend, as do I.

    • LiveFromNewYork

      Or whether or not I’m going to discuss it. I debated it prior but not now. I just watched that guy on the highway last night. I mean, everyone was already pissed off … walking around on the Thruway instead of being where they wanted to be. I thought that spweing crap about Joba staying in the bullpen WHILE he was pitching great as starter that very minute to a disagreeable and hostile crowd was about as stupid as you could get. It’s not like he could get away if they decided to pummel him and the ambulances wouldn’t arrive any time soon. I had no interest in sparring with him. My fellow pedestrians did.

  • Axl

    I don’t like Tavarez, but he has pitched well at the Stadium recently and seems to be far better than Sidney Ponson. Ponson’s ERA is deceiving. He’s given up a lot more hits than innings pitched and walked a bunch too…so pretty much he’s been consistently lucky and thats it. He allows over 1.5 base runners per inning. He’s going to get pounded on Friday night…i expect him to be DFA’d on Saturday.

    As for Joba, keep up the good work. But I still hate the idea of having Farsworth in the 8th. He gives up way too many home runs…so unless we’re up by a bunch of runs…one of those home runs could win the other team the game easily with men on base. Thank the heavens he’s gone after this year. Good thing Tom Gordon signed elsewhere to be a closer huh? Moron.

    We need to start bringing up some younger hungry guys to play a little bit here and there. Christian is a start…

    • steve (different one)

      Good thing Tom Gordon signed elsewhere to be a closer huh? Moron.

      kindof funny that you are angry about this since it’s also the only reason we have Joba Chamberlain.

  • Setty

    Hey Stuart, how does the Jeter haterade taste right about now?