Yanks split offensively-packed DH with Mets

I have DotF Title writer's block
Hunting for the Statues on Parade

Posted by mobile phone:
Today, in what amounted to an endless day of baseball, both Dan Giese and Sidney Ponson had something in common. Both pitchers allowed nine baserunners over four innings. In fact, Dan Giese actually pitched into the fifth before his ninth baserunner reached.
But as we know full well, the outcomes of their two efforts today were wildly divergent.

Giese probably pitched himself back to AAA – or at least the bullpen – as he emerged the loser of the 15-6 drubbing the Yanks suffered at home yesterday afternoon. Ponson, meanwhile, earned himself the win – and a largely undeserved second start – as the Yanks blanked the Mets in Shea last evening 9-0.

These two games clearly highlight the vagaries of baseball. Neither pitcher threw exceptionally well, and each were under fire for the duration of their respective starts. But when the dust settled, the breaks fell for Ponson and not for Giese. Such is the way luck in baseball works.

On a more detailed level, I have a few observations about the day’s events:

-Edwar Ramirez throws a high-pressure inning in a tight game and blows it while Jose Veras throws a scoreless frame in a blow out. Why? Joe Girardi‘s bullpen use in game one today was fairly inexplicable. He managed as though the Yanks were down by five when the game was well within reach. When the Yanks were up by nine runs, he used the better relievers. Until Edwar can get hitters out with that change up, he shouldn’t be pitching important innings.

-Ponson’s line is better than expected, and the 11-2 ground ball-to-fly ball ratio is a positive. But he threw just 56 of 96 pitches for strikes and was flirting with disaster all night. I don’t think that can last.

-Ain’t nothing like giving up two hits in the ninth inning of a 9-0 game. Way to go, Kei Igawa. Hopefully, he’ll be back in Scranton in exchange for David Robertson.

-Will anyone miss LaTroy Hawkins when he’s finally dismissed? I have to believe that move is on the horizon.

-With Jeter, Abreu and Cano emerging from their slumps at the same time, this team is on the verge of becoming an insane offensive force.

All right, folks. That’s it from me tonight. Thanks for all the comments today, and we’ll do it again tomorrow.

I have DotF Title writer's block
Hunting for the Statues on Parade
  • Hybrid Moments

    11-2 GB2FB ration is exactly why I wanted Ponson over Karstens. I will cut him some slack on the walks because he hadn’t pitched on the professional level in sometime but I think tonight was an encouraging outing from Sir Sid. I would rather have him than Giese.

  • xkevinx

    How can your observations not include Ohlendorf? He entered the game down 6-4 with two outs in the sixth and left the game an inning latter down 15-5. Edwar was bad, Ohlendorf was, and always has been, far worse. I am glad he is in scranton, and hope we do not see him for at least a couple months. as sad as it is, I would rather see Hawkins or Farns come in than Ohlendorf

  • http://riveraveblues.com Ben K.

    There’s really nothing more to say about Ohlendorf. Like Edwar, he shouldn’t have been pitching there. Unlike Edwar, he was sent to AAA after the game. The Yanks, at least, corrected one of two bullpen mistakes in a way.

    As for your Hawkins/Farnsworth comparison, don’t equate the two (and I realize you are not). Kyle has been far, far better than LaTroy.

    • Hybrid Moments

      I really can’t understand why the Yankees aren’t promoting Robertson. Its mind boggling.

      • Simon B.

        He could still use more time in AAA for a few things.

        Maybe now is the appropriate time to bring him up, but it’s hardly “mindboggling”.

    • Simon B.

      Wow, you actually think they should’ve sent down Edwar?

      Dude has had some bad outings lately, but he’s still been very good over the year. You can’t be so impulsive. He has the tools to be excellent.

  • Baseballnation

    Not excellent…pretty good, yes. K’s are pretty overrated, and while he gets alot, I’d take consistency at a good level then greatness in sporadic occasion. Edwar is not consistent enough with his fastball enough, thus his change up becomes a less effective tool.

    Ollie is just bad because he has no other consistent pitch then his fastball. Why the Yankees valued him with the attorney general over Micah Owings is beside me. Owings was widely viewed as a more upside talent then either, and if all went bad as a pitcher, he still would be the yankees top 1B prospect…

    • Chris

      The yankees tried to get Micah Owings, but were turned down, so it’s not like they preferred Ohlendorf to Ownings. Besides, it’s not like Owings is that much better.

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

      I really don’t like it when people say things like it “is beside me” when wondering why a team did not make a certain personnel decision. While Baseball America and Scout.com are great tools for fans and people outside the walls of MLB they pale in comparison to the amount of information and resources that each MLB organization has. Baseball America nor do any of us know as much as each MLB organization does, please take that into account before you make comments like these.

  • Tripp

    Strickland and Robertson need to be called up while they are hot, Strickland especially.

    Send Edwar down and Hawkins needs to be cut.

    I like Edwar he just doesn’t have the consistency to throw strikes. MLBers are too good at laying off the change up and waiting for the straight fastball to come down the plate.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    I can see Edwar’s development though. I see him good, excellent, then shaky, then very shaky, then good again. They’re not all Joba Chamberlain with the straight trajectory. They might be working with him. Eiland might see something that is worth developing. I don’t know, but I think there’s hope for old Bugs there.

    Ohlie seems to be going the opposite way. He seems to be in decline, decline, decline. I’m glad he got sent down. I’m actually glad the Yanks are using the farm and swapping in and out. That is the joy of a good farm system. And we have a good farm system finally. For all the bitterness toward Cashman (and I’ve been guilty of it too), there is some great development going on.

    We pluck em out, we try em out. They work they stay. They don’t work, they go back. I actually just wish we were more aggressive with the swaps (Melky for Gardner is long overdue).

    As I said yesterday I was not opposed to the Sidney move. He didn’t get released for pitching. He had been pitching well in Texas. He’s just a horrible human being when he drinks. And hopefully he’s sober enough to know he shouldn’t pull that crap on the Yankees. A Bronx beatdown is not something you want to invite.

    But there were scary moments when Lady Luck seemed to be looking the other way. (Maybe Sidney insulted her in a bar one night). So he’s not a sure thing and last night’s performance gave hollow comfort to Yankee fans. We know he can melt with the best of them.

    And Kei Igawa is just a mess. There’sno there there. Please get him out of my sight.

    I hope Dan Giese can be the long man. I’d like him to stick and bring some stability to the late innings. We need bullpen dependable bad. We know Joba as reliever is gone gone gone (thank you baseball gods) but now we have a what now what now what now situation. Our bullpen has to be more than “anyone not named Mo sucks” if we’re going anywhere with this wacko season.

  • Steve S

    I think Girardi has to get over this concept that Edwar is his left handed guy. Absolutely agree with the post, Veras has to be the guy.

  • mike

    Veras is no Bob Gibson either……and I do not see this “great minor leagues” referenced above when the two Yank starting pitchers from last night are 30+ guys who were released by inferior teams months ago, and the call-up left fielder is 26 year old career minor league free-agent.

    When the next guy we bring up is Igawa, who is hardly a minor leaguer in any sense other than having no skills to compete with Major leaguers, and Edwar himself is off the scrap heap – and we hire Hawkins because there are not any major-league ready relievers at AAA for this coming year….

    I am a huge fan of the draft, and of giving young guys a chance – but an honest apprasial would show that minor league player development has been a huge disappointment, drafting guys with bum wings means they are 1+ year behind before they even get the chance to be professional players, and there are no positional players who can step into the lineup for some time.

    Thnak God there is neither a salary cap and free agency !!

    • Chris

      Most of the Yankee’s talent is not MLB ready. This year is a transition year, and they’re trying to patch things together to get through it. Look at the starting pitchers that could be available in the next 1-2 years (just not necessarily this summer): Chamberlain, Hughes, Kennedy, Aceves, Brackman, Horne, McCutchen, Sanchez. And there are more behind them. Certainly, not all of them will pan out, but the idea with player development is that if you have enough talent going in, you’ll get enough good players coming out.

      • mike

        Thats what I keep hearing – but transition to “what”? Hughes and Kennedy are hurt, and Kennedy in particular projects as a back-of-the-rotation guy, Aceves (has anyone seen him actually pitch) is another 26 year old Indpdt-Free agent, Brackman and Sanches with bum wings? Horne?

        Its not Seaver/Gentry/Koos/Ryan down there, with Matlack on the way….we just need to be really realistic and use these guys to get us some known talent in return.

        Its great to transition, but with the offense only getting older and more fragile, and the two best pitchers in the rotation are likely on their last lap, nevermind competiton in the division – the time to overpay for CC or Bedard is now.

        Minor leaguers are an asset like money, and since we overpay financially for players, i dont see why we should be frugal with these other assets, especially when we have an identifiable preesent need

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

          With all due respect, comparing prospects to money could not be more wrong. The prospects we have are not all clones of three guys, each of them have their own specific value and ceiling and there is only one where that came from.

          Ian Kennedy does not project to be a “back-of-the-rotation” guy, his floor is of that but he projects to a #3 starter (I would go as far as a below average #2 starter if his command returns to excellence). In the Minor Leagues IPK has thrown 157.1-innings to the tune of a 0.94-WHIP, 9.91-K/9, 2.98-BB/9, 173/52-K/BB ratio, and an 8.58-H/9. I don’t care what you say, that is borderline dominant (I wanted to actually put a number on his dominance using Project Prospect’s dominance factor but I could not determine an age-level standard for Major League starters). Take into account that he reportedly has an average fastball (with great command), a plus Changeup, an above average Curveball and Changeup with plus overall command then you can’t possibly say this guy’s ceiling is that of a “back-of-the-rotation” starter.

          • mikef

            Jamal – I recognize you are the mayor when discussing statistics, and its hard to argue with numbers. Yet when I have seen IPK ( last year, spring training and this year) he does not appear to be a guy who you will build a staff around-but rather a complimentary player.

            There are five bizillion guys who have had his dominance thru the minors who have flamed out just short of the bigs, or have been knocked back a notch, hurt etc. – or best case take a few years to adjust/come into their own. He lacks the big-time gas which lets people get out of mistakes at the pro level, and we have seen how fickel control is at the big-league level when the hitters are better and more selective. See Ramiez,Edwar.

            Can the Yanks bank on this guy to be their #3 next year – not at all. In 2010?…….lets say all goes well and he is a league average #3/4. At this point there is not one person in the Org who would not take IPK as the 3/4 in 2 years based on current conditions. Theoretically, is it worth the Yanks waiting for a Lilly-esque pitcher to develop when he can be used to lure CC or Bedard?

  • Chris

    Lets see, would you rather have pitcher A or pitcher B:

    Pitcher A: 33IP, 18H, 12BB, 9R, 48K in AAA
    Pitcher B: 25IP, 20H, 12BB, 10R, 27K in MLB

    Pitcher A is Ramirez, Pitcher B is Robertson. I don’t know that Robertson will be worse than Ramirez when he comes up, but it’s also not clear that he’ll be better. Certainly he should be called up (he’s obviously better than Hawkins), but I don’t think sending down Ramirez is the answer.

    • Guiseppe Franco

      If he can manage to keep his walk totals down to a minimum, Robertson will be better than Edwar.

      The reason why is because Edwar is a one-trick pony. If he can’t locate his straight fastball, the change-up is worthless.

      However, Robertson has three pitches – not two. Robertson is known for his nasty curve, but he’s throwing a significant amount of change-ups too. And he has pretty good, but not spectacular movement on his fastball.

      Unlike Edwar, Robertson will keep hitters guessing a lot more and his stuff is better. He’s also a better multiple-inning guy, whereas Edwar is a one-inning guy and hold your breath after that.

      We’ll never know if that will translate to the majors, but I’m willing to bet that Robertson will be a more reliable arm out of that pen than Edwar.

      My biggest concern with Robertson is his walks. If he can keep those down, he’ll be a valuable weapon.

  • DavidBrown

    I happen to agree 100% with Chris that this is a transition year for the Yankees, and about their starting pitching options. He failed to mention that we have THREE bullpen options RIGHT now…….. Robertson, Melancon, and Cox. Does it mean they will be better? No, it does not. But, they can’t be any WORSE than Hawkins. Since it is a reasonable assumption to say that Farnsworth will NOT be back next year, I would like to see if one of the kids can take Farnsworth’s 8th inning role for the future.
    On another point, how classless is Jerry Manuel making a starting pitcher stay on the mound to hand the ball to a reliever, while getting booed? (I could not believe my ears when Michael Kay said that is his policy). I cannot stand Pedro Martinez (Never liked him, never did), but a Future Hall Of Famer does NOT deserve this kind of treatment. No one ever accused Willie Randolph of being a great manager, but he would NEVER disrespect a player like that. This is treatment that although not as bad as Randolph’s firing in Anaheim, is just another example of how the Mets operate. If I was a CC Sabbathia or Ben Sheets, I would think TWICE about considering signing with the Mets, for that reason alone.

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

      We do not have three bullpen options right now, David Robertson still needs to work on his control and Mark Melancon still needs to garner some Triple-A innings. J.B. Cox is the most Major League ready arm of the three but his strikeout numbers are less than stellar to say the least. Then again he is a ground-ball machine so that takes some of the sting off but it is still not what you want to see from him.

      In my opinion Scott Patterson is our best bullpen option down on the farm and although he may not be the most sexiest name he may very well be the best.

      Lastly, you do not re-sign Alex Rodriguez, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, and pick up Bobby Abreu’s option if you are envisioning a transition year.

  • BillyBall

    Screw Pedro and his being booed because of the policy! Why even care about embarrassing that jerk. Was he embarrassed when he threw down a 75 year old Don Zimmer. Not at all and he never apologized. Why even waste your time posting how Pedro was disrespected!

    As far as Robertson being called up, we should reference a website called pending pinstripes, as it gives a run down of all the minor league players that are near ready for a call up. Robertson has been somewhat wild and you cannot have a pitcher who has a tough time finding the stike zone pitching in relief for the Yanklees. Give these kids some time. One of them will emerge when they are ready. Until than trust your GM, scouting, and the Yankees coaching. Believe me Im sure they would like to dump Hawkins and company but right now they have to grind it out until better options are available. And better options meaning not to trade the farm for a 30’s avg relief pitcher.

  • Rich

    I have as much faith in Cash as almost anyone, but tell me why Gardner isn’t up here yet? He’s a very good (although not a great) GM, but he’s hardly infallible.

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

      1. Brian Cashman said he would be up here if he was a RHB.
      2. With Hideki Matsui on the DL wouldn’t you rather have Wilson Betemit at 1B with Jason Giambi at DH instead of DH’ing the second best defensive LF in the AL (in terms of zone rating) in Johnny Damon?

      Before the Matsui DL stint I would have argued endlessly to keep Brett Garnder in the minors because he did not have a spot. Melky Cabrera is not the immense black hole he is viewed as sometimes and Gardner’s speed should not warrant Melky Cabrera’s demotion to the bench. Now with Matsui on the DL I can see him being brought up but Justin Christian isn’t exactly stinking up the joint.

      • Rich

        Gardner’s splits this season show that he may well be better against LH pitching. He doesn’t have to supplant Melky, but I would like to see him called up to at least compete with him, irrespective of Matsui’s injury.

  • DavidBrown

    I am well aware of what Pedro did to Don Zimmer (And I have been anti-Pedro, long before that). However, the goal of any organization should be to win, and treating Martinez, Randolph, or others in a disrespectful way, is not going to create a positive atmosphere in the clubhouse. Throw in the fact, that they are the oldest team in the league, “Slot” players in the draft, instead of going after the best available (Read Ken Davidoff’s column in Yesterday’s Newsday to see what I mean. http://www.newsday.com), have one of the worst farm systems in baseball (According to Baseball America), and not even go after the best talent in Latin America anymore (Omar Manaya’s ONE STRENGTH), means they are going right down the drain, while the Yankees are closing in on title 27.
    As for Robertson, perhaps his control is not the best, but he has not given up a home run since he was signed (THE ONLY PLAYER IN ORGANIZED BASEBALL (MAJORS OR MINORS), who has that on his resume). I hope to see him, Cox, and most importantly, Melancon soon.

  • Ivan

    Yankees are in a tough spot. I mean one can I really blame Giradi? His starter suck, and you wanted him to use Veras in the 5th? Hey the pitching was bad and made Delgado look good. At least we won the second game.

    • LiveFromNewYork

      The New Yorker had a great cartoon in this weeks issue.

      A mound conference between pitcher and catcher. Pitcher says, “I could keep my slider down if they’d just fire the manager.”

      New Yorker to Mets: assholes!

  • E-ROC

    Owning Pedro again is always a sight to see, even though watched it on MLB Gameday.

  • Simon B.

    “One-trick pony” cliche once again. “Straight-fastball” strawman argument once again.

    More misconceptions about Edwar Ramirez. I’m not putting down Robertson, but Edwar has much better stuff.

    Edwar is shaky and can break down easily. That was always my worry, but he has tremendous tools. You should give him the benefit of the doubt; he is still a rookie, and he has still generally pitched very well this year.

    If people were worried about Edwar’s makeup and its effect on his consistency, I wouldn’t mind so much, but I can’t stand this bandwagon of ignorance lead by the Pete Abe about how he can’t cut it because of this nonsense about how his fastball is “straight”, and hitters will just sit on his “changeup” whatever that means.

    “We’ll never know if that will translate to the majors, but I’m willing to bet that Robertson will be a more reliable arm out of that pen than Edwar.”

    This reminds me of another quote from you.


    “I’ll bet that Ohlendorf turns out to be a far more reliable option [than Edwar].”

    • Simon B.

      I meant to post this in reply to Guiseppe Franco’s post above.

    • Simon B.

      One more addendum. Unlike Ohlendorf, I’m not discounting Robertson being a good reliever. I like him a lot. Unlike Ohlendorf, he actually was good in the minors before promoted.

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