Since joining the Detroit Tigers on August 1, Kyle Farnsworth has been a bit less than impressive. He’s thrown 4.2 innings, allowing seven hits and four earned runs. By all accounts, his Detroit performance has been something of a market correction after a stellar four months in the Bronx. But, right now, the Yanks actually miss him.
This afternoon, in Anaheim, the Yanks’ bullpen imploded. While Dan Giese exceeded expectations and earned himself another start, after Giese left the game, everything fell apart. Jose Veras, Edwar Ramirez and David Robertson combined for the worst two innings I’ve seen any bullpen toss in a long time. The three gave up 11 hits and 10 runs — nine earned — en route to blowing a 3-1 Yankee lead. When the dust finally settled, the Angels walked away 11-4 winners, and with the Red Sox winning, the Yanks saw their October hopes slip further away.
Offensively, the Yanks didn’t do much against John Lackey and the Angels. A-Rod homered for the second straight day; Jason Giambi added his second post-mustache home run; Damon singled; and Jeter hit a sac fly. That would be all the Yanks would muster against the Angels.
But again the story focused around the bullpen. After giving up the game on Friday night, the gang out of the pen did it again tonight. In August, the pen has been beyond horrible. They’ve thrown 28.2 innings with an ERA of 8.16. They’ve blown Yankee leads and close games; they’ve snatched defeat from the jaws of victory and have stymied potential comebacks. It has, in a word, been a disaster.
Ironically, the problems started when Kyle Farnsworth was shipped out for Ivan Rodriguez. While Farnsworth was never a sure bet, he provided stability in relief. With Krazy Kyle around, the rest of the Yankees relief corps were all pushed back an inning. But when Kyle left and Damaso Marte arrived, the New World Bullpen Order collapsed. Marte hasn’t yet filled in for Farnsworth, and no one else is getting the job done.
Perhaps, this rough patch is just one of those things that happens in August when everyone’s feeling the aches and pains of a 162-game season. Perhaps the pen will snap out of it and restore itself to its July grandeur. But right now, it’s costing the Yankees precious games in August in a pennant race, and I actually find myself missing Kyle Farnsworth. What ever have we come to?