Yanks changing the Joba Plan mid-course

Report: Angels on the verge of landing Kazmir
Game 128: Yanks should employ same strategy against Buehrle

As the Yanks gear up for a potentially rain-soaked game against the Chicago White Sox, word out of the clubhouse involves some changes to the Joba Plan. Originally, the Yanks had planned to limit Joba to six more starts, prior to Tuesday’s sub-par outing, with extended rest in between. Now, the team has announced that Joba will take the ball every five days but that his innings will be closely monitored. According to Joe Girardi, Joba will not factor into every decision. Therefore, we can assume that he won’t be pitching five innings every start. “We just thought,” Girardi said to reporters, “putting him more on a routine would be better for him.” This week’s discouraging start has seemingly convinced the Yanks that a regular Joba is a better Joba or Sergio Mitre and Chad Gaudin.

While good for the rotation, this move means however, that the Yanks’ pen will be rather taxed every five days. At this point, the Yanks would be wise to have Phil Hughes or Al Aceves shadow Joba. Using Hughes would give him the regular innings he needs, and using Aceves would allow Al to slot back into the routine of a starter he seems to be missing. More on this over the weekend.

Report: Angels on the verge of landing Kazmir
Game 128: Yanks should employ same strategy against Buehrle
  • Jim Lane

    Great call. There is absolutely no reason that Hughes should not be shadowing Joba. One has to seriously question the Yanks management if this does not happen.

    • http://yankees.lhblogs.com Peter Abraham

      Phil is not going to shadow Joba. Phil is their set-up guy and he’s not conditioned to go 3-4 innings at this point. They’re not interested in building him up right now. That’ll be next season.

      They’ll see Gaudin, Albaladejo,, Melancon, etc.

      • Dela G

        woah, pete abe posts here?

        • JobaWockeeZ

          Yeah occasionally.

          • Dela G


  • http://twitter.com/Hopjake Jake H

    I think this is smart. Have him go 5 innings for a few then build up from that.

    • Yankee1010

      I think the problem (and I have not mapped it out numbers-wise with the schedule) is that if he’s going 5 innings for a few of those starts and then 6 or 7 innings in the others, he’ll blow past his innings limit.

      • Doug

        he’s already blow past it. or at least the one they were using in 2007.

        • Doug

          blown (sorry)

          • Yankee1010

            Yeah, I know he’s going to blow past the Verducci + 30 limit, but I think the Yanks had it around 160. I still think they’ll hold him to that, but they can’t do that if he’s going 5-7 innings each start. That was my only point.

            • Doug

              i know. my point is that the yanks seem to be changing the joba rules daily. innings limits are changing, days rest are changing.

              • Yankee1010

                I agree. They should have stayed with the latest plan, i.e. the longer rests now.

                It would have kept his innings in check, prepared him for the schedule of a #4 starter in the playoffs and also allowed him to pitch deeper into games. The Yanks don’t want him to get used to going 5 innings or less over the next month, because in the playoffs, hopefully he’ll be going 6 or 7 innings.

  • Doug

    As I said last thread, they’re making things up as they go along.

  • Yankee1010

    This doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. Joba will be the #4 starter in the playoffs, which means that he’ll be subject to long layoffs then too. I would certainly rather have him iron out the rust issues associated with the layoffs during the regular season instead of a critical Game 4 in the playoffs.

    Plus, as you said, it’s going to tax the bullpen. Also, it wasn’t an issue for Joba after the break and his numbers with more than the usual amount of days off earlier in the year were better than his numbers on normal rest.

    This seems a little bit like a knee-jerk reaction.

    • Bill R

      Knee Jerk? Every start in which Joba has more than 5 days rest he gets smacked around! Look it up!

      • whozat

        Why don’t you? Check his first start after the all-star break.

      • Doug

        well, except for the one after the ASB

      • Yankee1010

        Check his Game Log out. You’ll be surprised. And every start? Really? The All Star Break screwed him up?

        Plus, as I said, he’s not going to be on anything close to regular rest in the playoffs. If the layoffs is an issue for him, it’s better that he learns how to deal with it now instead of October. They have a 6 game lead, and while they’re not guaranteed a spot, they could certainly use it to their advantage and acclimatize Joba to the long rest now instead of having it blow up on them later.

  • chriskeo

    This is better, i’d rather have 4 or 5 really good innings than have him give up 4-5 runs and at best go 6 innings

  • jsbrendog

    possibly a reason hughes ahsnt been used
    (i know it isnt)

    maybe this means hughes can get his innings?
    (i know it doesnt)


  • Doug

    Doubt that Hughes will shadow Joba. That’d take him away from the precious 8th inning role

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

    The bullpen really doesn’t matter that much, Sept. callups are right around the corner. The bodies will be there.

    • Dela G

      thats exactly what i was thinking. Coming tuesday, this will be a non issue

    • Yankee1010

      Yeah that’s a good point. Then again, it’s not like one can have a bunch of confidence in Claggett, Albie and Edwar at this point.

      Big picture, protecting Joba’s arm is the real issue. It seems that they’re not going to stray from that at least.

      • Ed

        Albie fixed himself in AAA. Totally dominated down there, and was great in the very small sample in the majors since. And Melancon seemed to be putting it together when he was last in the majors. So that’s two arms I expect to be useful.

        • Yankee1010

          I agree that Melancon will be pretty damn good in the majors and he got squeezed out in a numbers game.

          As for Ablie, I’d like to believe it, but I think he’s ultimately a AAAA reliever. In his last 11.2 innings in AAA, he’s given up 11 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk and struck out 6. I don’t know if those are dominant numbers though. He also seems a lot more bat shy in the majors.

          I’m not saying Albie is useless, but he doesn’t instill a lot of trust.

          • Ed

            Albie’s season in AAA:

            1.65 ERA, 32.2 IP, 0.77 WHIP, 7.67 K/BB

            I think it’s too early to say if he’s a AAAA guy or not. He’s got a whopping 53.2 IP spread over 3 seasons. Not much to go by there. I believe he was a September callup in ’07. His ’08 was interrupted by an injury. ’09 is the only time he pitched bad enough to get demoted.

  • anonymous

    This is all good. Lets do this.

  • Free Mike Vick

    They should have been doing this from the freaking start…giving Joba like 8-10 days rest between starts was just stupid!

    Good Call Cash, and whoever else, decided to finally make the right choice.

    • Accent Shallow

      Fantastic username.

      I don’t necessarily agree with the content, but thumbs up otherwise.

  • C

    This is dumb. They should have been skipping the occasional Joba start from the beginning of the season. That way they could coordinate his skipped starts with off days so we wouldn’t need a Mitre/Gaudin start. It doesn’t make sense that they decided to start skipping starts only at the end of the season.

  • Teix is the Man

    I just hope Joba doesn’t get hurt

  • Doug

    hey mike, you see you got a shout-out from peteabe on his game thread

  • Johan Iz My Brohan

    When will they realize Innings pitched does not equal the amount of stress on the arm. Monitor his pitch counts instead, (80-100 would probably 5 innings for him anyway).

    • Yankee1010

      I would hope that the Yanks are smart enough to take this into account too. I am pretty sure they probably are, because the points you make are perfectly valid.

      The public is having enough trouble grasping innings limits, so I’m sure the Yanks just figure they don’t want to give them anything else to think about.

      • chriskeo

        We can only hope that is what they are doing, that makes a lot of sense because the average yankee fan (non-RABer) can barely understand innings limit in general.

        • JobaWockeeZ

          Nolan Ryan too.

  • Bob Ruffolo

    Why are they doing this to Joba? Let the kid pitch!

    • pat

      That’s exactly what they’re doing. He will now be in the rotation.

    • Salty Buggah

      Yes, let him pitch for this year and get him hurt/be ineffective (or both) in the future! Also, how do we know how he handles blowing past his career high of IP as he may get very fatigued down the stretch.

  • pat

    Gotta do what you gotta do. Lets win some more ballgames and forget about this bullshit.

  • Joba or Hughes to the pen

    Aceves shadow Joba?Aceves has a bad back and he’s numbers show it.How would that be good?

    With Joba going back to normal rest and not going 5 innings I guess nothing has changed.He never really went that many innings or good enough to go 7 innings.How can there not be any 4th and 5th starters out there besides AJ Burnett JR(Joba) to eat innings.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      Not good enough to reach the 7th? So when he pitched the 8th as a STARTER what did you do? Honestly? Did you block it out because its too hard to take?
      But honestly do you sincerely believe the bullpen to be better than the starters?

  • Zack

    If they bring up arms after Sept 1 then hes not really going to kill the bullpen.

  • Goldmember

    I wonder if they have anyone has any data on players being better off this way over the other way?

    It “makes sense” that this way would be easier on the arm, but I wonder if there is data on other players in this situation. I can’t remember this happening in the Majors.

    • Goldmember

      You know what I mean.

  • AndrewYF

    I don’t like the plan simply for the reason that Joba will definitely be seeing long layoffs in the postseason should the need to pitch him arise.

  • Reggie C.

    Prediction: this will not be the last amendment to the Joba rules.

    • Dela G

      prediction: water is wet, sun rises east and will set in west

  • Little Bill

    This makes LESS sense than what they were doing! What if he’s cruising through 4 innings and has thrown 65 pitches? Can’t let him go past that innings limit so he’s gotta sit. It just doesn’t make any sense.

  • gio

    where’s the game thread, boys?

  • Tank Foster

    I’m all for going ahead and letting him pitch, although I gotta say this “monitor his innings closely” thing sounds a bit sketchy. How often does he get past the fifth inning? What are they going to do, let him pitch 3 innings and take him out of the game? Every 5 days?

  • Accent Shallow

    I like this, it shows adaptability.

    Starting pitchers are creatures of habit, and while occasionally giving Joba 8-10 days off can’t hurt, pitching on irregular rest regularly (have fun parsing that!) apparently does not agree with him.

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