Oct
05

Mitre, Moseley, and Golson make ALDS roster

By

(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

With the team on its way to Minnesota in advance of tomorrow’s ALDS opener, the Yankees have released their 25-man roster for the series. They’re carrying 11 pitchers and 14 position players, with Sergio Mitre and Dustin Moseley grabbing the final two bullpen spots. They beat out the unimpressive quartet of Javy Vazquez, Chad Gaudin, Royce Ring, and Ivan Nova, all of whom pretty much bombed their September auditions. Nova’s the only real surprise, but he didn’t exactly shine in his relief appearance on Saturday night.

We know that CC Sabathia (Game One), Andy Pettitte (Game Two), and Phil Hughes (Game Three) will be the primary starters, though A.J. Burnett‘s status was a bit unclear. He made the roster and will pitch in relief, joining Joba Chamberlain, Mariano Rivera, Kerry Wood, David Robertson, Boone Logan, Mitre, and Moseley out in the bullpen. Given the scheduled off days between Games Two and Three (and Four and Five), the four core setup relievers (Joba, Wood, D-Rob, Logan) should be able to pitch almost every inning between the starters and Rivera. I’m curious to see if and how A.J. will be used, he could be a weapon if comes in and just airs it out for an inning, but does Joe Girardi trust him?

Greg Golson beat out Eduardo Nunez for a bench spot, since he offers top notch outfield defense and has no worse than equal baserunning ability. Ramiro Pena gets the nod over Nunez likely because of seniority, but it was the correct choice anyway. Neither player can hit and at least Pena can play stellar defense. Regardless, the utility infielder is going to be glued to the bench all month. The starting eight position players are clear and do not need introductions, and as expected the DH spot will be a Marcus Thames/Lance Berkman platoon. Golson, Pena, Austin Kearns, Frankie Cervelli, and the non-starting half of the DH platoon will occupy the bench.

Thames figures to get a lot of at-bats in the ALDS with lefties Francisco Liriano and Brian Duensing scheduled to start two of the first three games for Minnesota, so Berkman’s going to play a big role coming off the bench as a pinch hitter in the late innings. His power appears to be pretty much gone, but he’s gotten on base 40 times in his last 100 plate appearances, which has definite value. Golson will likely get the call as the primary pinch runner since they have two outfielders on the bench and just one infielder, and he should be well equipped for the job. He’s swiped 60 bags in 73 tries over the last three years in the minors (82.2% success rate).

The Yankees are only going to go as far as their star players take them. The decision to carry Moseley over Nova, or Pena over Nunez will not determine their playoff fate. They might contribute a little something at some point, but that’s it. We’ve known who this team will rely on come playoff time all season, so for all intents and purposes the last three or four ALDS roster spots are inconsequential.

Categories : Playoffs

175 Comments»

  1. Captain Jack says:

    14 position players?

    Posada, Teixeira, Cano, Rodriguez, Jeter, Gardner, Granderson, Swisher, Berkman, Thames, Golson, Cervelli, Pena/Nunez, and Kearns I guess?

  2. larryf says:

    Nova too inexperienced.

    Gaudin too awful.

  3. bexarama says:

    I’m pretty surprised Joe didn’t take Royce Ring, but not exactly sad about it. Not surprised there’s no Nova because of his struggles with guys on base.

  4. Captain Jack says:

    Woulda rather had Nova rather than, Moseley or Mitre…at least Nova might not suck.

    • Tom Zig says:

      This is true. But Nova was visibly nervous out there on the mound in the 2nd game of the DH. I understood pitching around Ortiz. But walking Kevin Cash, the man with the .248 OBP for his career, just wasn’t acceptable. Nova just wasn’t able to throw strikes and nearly threw the ball away multiple times. The playoffs are not a time for auditions. He needs more experience.

      • Poopy Pants says:

        But many people here said that Nova was a ‘real man’ because he yelled at someone after possibly throwing a ball at his head (when he himself doesn’t have to step in the batter’s box and truly deal with the consequences). It’s odd that such a ‘gamer’ would be scared during a game that essentially means nothing.

  5. first time lawng time says:

    Wish Javy was on instead of Mosley or Mitre. He’s not that bad out of the pen.

    • CBean says:

      I think, after plunking 3 guys in a row and then blowing his start, Javy had run out of chances. Still makes me sad for him.

    • Slugger27 says:

      i think he is…. id have more confidence in moseley

      if either pitched a meaningful inning something probably went very wrong anyway… but leaving javy off the roster to me was a no-brainer

    • Mr. Sparkle says:

      He can’t be trusted out of the pen due to the amount of long balls he surrenders. True, he gave up fewer in a relief role than as a starter, but in the postseason, the last thing you can do is bring in a guy susceptible to surrendering a bloop and a blast. You can get away with that vs. the likes of the A’s and Cleveland, but it can’t be tolerated vs. a playoff team…in a playoff series no less.

  6. CBean says:

    Surprised Moseley made it in over the second lefty but I’m ok with this.

  7. JobaWockeeZ says:

    YAY! No Guadin! I’m sure Joe is hurt though.

  8. Jake LaMotta's Left Hook fka Johan says:

    Exactly what I thought would happen, especially with Mitre

  9. Sam says:

    Would rather have Nova than Moseley but it’s not a big deal. Honestly if Moseley come into a game the leverage is probably close to 0 anyway

    • Dirty Pena says:

      Exactly. And if Nova/Gaudin/Vazquez/Ring got in, it would’ve been in the same spot. If any of these guys are pitching, we are either ahead by 8+ or in big trouble for that game.

  10. Anthony Murillo says:

    Would rather see Nova instead of Mitre but oh well. Here’s hoping we don’t see either Mitre or Mosely unless we’re up by 10 runs or more.

    • chris c. says:

      “Would rather see Nova instead of Mitre but oh well.”

      Po-tA-to, Po-tAH-to, To-mA-to, To-mAH-to.

      Joe made the call based on whom he felt would suck less if called on.

  11. Howie says:

    It’s too bad Albaladejo didn’t get more of a chance in September. I feel like he could’ve been worthy.

    • Accent Shallow says:

      Seconded. Hopefully he gets a shot in ST 2011.

    • Tim says:

      In this bullpen ALbaladejo is highly redundant. You already have Robertson, Chamberlain, and Wood as right-handed set-up men. All three of those guys are better than Albaladejo. I would rather carry an extra long man as insurance than a guy who would be limited to one inning of work when the pen is already full of better options.

  12. Andrew says:

    Hopefully Mitre is on the roster as the designated overly-excited champagne sprayer during the celebration after they knock out the Twins, and won’t actually be doing any pitching.

  13. first time lawng time says:

    Is it possible that some of the guys who weren’t on the roster for the ALDS will be on it for the ALCS? And vice versa?

  14. vin says:

    I’m a little surprised they chose Golson. I figured it would come down to Golson or Nunez as the pinch runner (Pena will certainly make the team because of his glove). Just recently Girardi mentioned he preferred Nunez as a pinch running option (read it on LoHud perhaps?).

    Also, If you told me a week ago that they’d be playing the Twins and not carrying Ring on the roster, I’d be shocked. But given his perfomance in his limited appearances, I’m not too surprised anymore.

    Mitre, Moseley and Burnett all on the roster seems like overkill. But Albaladejo and Sanchez never were able to get any traction.

    • Avi says:

      I’m surprised with Golson over Nunez too. Nunez is a better hitter (.289 BA is Scranton compared to golson’s .260) and strikes out less (99 K’s compared to nunez’s 60).

      • pete says:

        neither figures to get ABs, though. PR and LIDR situations only for both, and Golson plays outfield extremely well. In reality it was more of a Pena vs. Nunez than a Golson vs. Nunez choice.

  15. Rey22 says:

    How much did Mitre pitch in September? 3 innings total?

    • Slugger27 says:

      hes just there to pitch in 12-2 games, on the off chance one of those occur… its not really a big deal

      he has a lower ceiling than nova, but he probably has a higher floor as well

      • chris c. says:

        Floors and ceilings do no matter in the postseason. They only matter when evaluating rookies.

        So Nova may be better than Mitre in 2 years. Congratulations to him.

    • chris c. says:

      The way some of the guys in the pen looked this past month, he’d have been better off not pitching at all!

  16. Yank the Frank says:

    I would have taken Gaudin over Mitre but its like diet coke or pepsi, they both suck. I’m glad Golson is on as a late inning runner or defensive replacment.

  17. first time lawng time says:

    Have the Twins released their “fundamentally sound” roster yet?

    Honestly I am so tired of people going on about “small ball” and “fundamentally sound” baseball. It’s stupid. Do the Yankees play baseball like that? No. Who has the best run differential and most runs scored in baseball? The Yankees.

    Exactly

    (Rant over)

    • Slugger27 says:

      its mostly the clowns at espn, but yes its annoying… the angels were supposed to be that storyline last year, and in the first 2 games of the alcs they made about 5772587 mental mistakes, both in the field and on the basepaths… one being the last play of game 2 where he inexplicably tried to throw to 2nd base

      there was a fangraphs piece a long time ago that talked about nick punto and the “little things” that he does… after some extensive research, he really doesnt do any of these said “little things”, and the conclusion that was his repuation was essentially 100% fabricated out of thin air (which i think is mainly cuz hes a white middle infielder on a small market team)

    • chris c. says:

      “Honestly I am so tired of people going on about “small ball” and “fundamentally sound” baseball. It’s stupid. Do the Yankees play baseball like that? No. Who has the best run differential and most runs scored in baseball? The Yankees.”

      Oh, sorry to inconvenience you, champ. Not every organization can spend 200 million bucks per year on their payroll to bring in a lineup of guys who can each lose at least 30 balls a year.
      Some teams have to find over ways to win. There are other ways to win baseball games, you know.

      It’s a shame the Twins organization does not have your respect. They certainly have mine.

      • Poopy Pants says:

        “Oh, sorry to inconvenience you, champ. Not every organization can spend 200 million bucks per year on their payroll to bring in a lineup of guys who can each lose at least 30 balls a year.
        Some teams have to find over ways to win. There are other ways to win baseball games, you know.
        It’s a shame the Twins organization does not have your respect. They certainly have mine.”

        Repeated for emphasis.

  18. Klemy says:

    Yeah, I guess I had hoped Mitre wouldn’t be added, but I can’t say I’m shocked either. Like has been said, if he pitches, something went wrong or we’re up by a lot. One lefty might make things interesting, but Ring wasn’t good in his audition anyway.

  19. first time lawng time says:

    It might be just me, but I would feel more comfortable with a “real” DH, aka Hideki Matsui, with Thames/Berkman on the bench than those two DHing with no bench. I’m probably just being paranoid though.

  20. Not Tank the Frank says:

    Choosing between Vazquez, Mitre, Gaudin, Moseley and Nova is like choosing between shit, shit, shit and… well you get the idea. Nova would have been interesting to see but despite an early reputation for not getting rattled by throwing up at Bautista, he clearly showed that he can be rattled and lose the ability to throw strikes. I suppose he would be the best option should a starter succumb to injury, but again he’s only the slightest of upgrades to anyone else on that list. Basically, if we see any of these guys throw a pitch, the game has been decided either way.

  21. larryf says:

    Casilla 9-13 lifetime vs CC? Amazing.

  22. Anthony Murillo says:

    lol @ the Moseley picutre…one would think he’s such a big time member of our pitching staff.

  23. bexarama says:

    That is one badass picture of Moseley but Gaudin sucks lol whatevs

  24. Burnett AND Moseley AND Mitre seems like overkill to me. I’d rather have replaced one of them with Ring the second LOOGY.

    None of those 6th, 7th, and 8th pitchers in the bullpen are likely to face a single batter anyway, but at least Ring gives you the theoretical option to exploit a second LOOGY matchup after you’ve already used Logan in a big spot (or allows you greater freedom to use Logan knowing you’ve got another LOOGY in reserve).

    • first time lawng time says:

      but at least Ring gives you the theoretical option to exploit a second LOOGY

      …orrrrr CC TO TEH PEN!!!111!!1

    • Slugger27 says:

      ya i thought that was curious as well… i think having ring come in the 6th inning to face thome when hughes is at like 105 pitches already would be more valuable than 3 long men.

      the only thing i can come up with is that they think mitre could be useful for a double play that is desperately needed.

      or maybe they just think ring just really really really sucks

    • Steve H says:

      Agreed. As bad as Ring has been in his career he’s done pretty well against lefties and the Twins have some big LH bats. If they ever get to whomever is 3rd of the longmen, they are in trouble, but I could see a spot where the extra LHP could definitely be used.

    • Not Tank the Frank says:

      It does seem like overkill. Do you think the decision to have Burnett on the roster has anything to do his confidence, which is perceived as “fragile”, and to try to get him some work during the series seeing as they plan to start him in the ALCS? A good outing out of the bullpen could theoretically boost him into a nice outing in the ALCS.

      I’m not personally a believer in any of the “Burnett head-case” nonsense, but perhaps the Yankees feel differently?

      • Anthony Murillo says:

        I think Burnett is on the roster in case Pettitte or Hughes get smacked around in their respective starts.

        • That.

          Keeping Burnett on the roster makes all the sense in the world; he’s the best longman option by far, and if disaster strikes and both Andy and Phil bomb out their Game 2 and 3 starts and look horrible, if we have to give scramble and Game 5 to someone else, it should be Burnett.

          That being said, Mitre and Moseley duplicate what Burnett does. Having one Burnett duplicate makes sense; having two is overkill, IMO, and not the best use of our resources.

          Even if we never pitch that 8th man in the bullpen, I’d rather have a second lefty than a third longman.

        • dalelama says:

          Or Pettitte gets hurt…….

      • Slugger27 says:

        i think its partly that, yes. obviously hes still a better pitcher than mitre, so they wouldnt be able to justify keeping mitre and leaving him off. same with moseley.

        lets not forget: we are gonna need burnett in the alcs if we get there. we also have him for the next 3 years. for better or worse, we need him, and we’re stuck with him… leaving him off the alds roster and keeping a guy like moseley or gaudin instead which be a slap in his face that just isnt necessary.

        keeping him on but stashing him in the bullpen doesnt totally shatter his confidence, but it also sends a clear message: we dont care about your contract, you gotta earn your starters role

        i like the move.

    • j_Yankees says:

      Agree that AJ/Moseley/Mitre is a bit much.

    • Adam says:

      Agreed, I don’t get the advantage of having Moseley and Mitre (essentially the same guy) over the off chance of needing Ring to face Thome in a potential important situation early in the game. Here is where I hope I don’t hear, “Mitre’s sinker can neutralize lefties” from Giradi.

      • bexarama says:

        If we need Ring to face Thome in a critical situation… eesh. I’d rather have Logan there if it’s at a mid-point in the game (or what have you) or Mariano if it’s late in the game.

        • Adam says:

          Absolutely, but what if it is the 4th inning, men on base, Thome up and the starter has slogged through the first three? I don’t think I would mind Ring in that situation. Either way I think the odds of that being beneficial are higher than having to use both Mitre and Moseley at any point.

          • Adam says:

            Then again I also think that perhaps Nova would have been a better choice anyway, the potential to provide something. But I also understand why not given his struggles with men on base.

            • Adam says:

              As an aside, let me express how lucky we are to follow a team where our regulars are good enough that we spend our time debating the merits of the last person in the bullpen.

          • Either way I think the odds of that being beneficial are higher than having to use both Mitre and Moseley at any point.

            That’s all I’m saying.

            The chances we need to use Ring (or are inclined to) are small, but they’re still larger than our chances of needing or being inclined to use all three of Burnett, Moseley, and Mitre.

          • bexarama says:

            If it’s Pettitte or CC I keep him in.

            Either way I think the odds of that being beneficial are higher than having to use both Mitre and Moseley at any point.
            Decent point. But I still would’ve wanted Royce Ring to get, I don’t know, some more experience out there. It’d be a SSS thing no matter what, yeah, but it is what it is.

    • Hughesus Christo says:

      Royce Ring is “fucking terrible”

      • So are Mitre, Moseley, Gaudin, Javy, and Nova, but Ring is the only one that offers any sort of tactical advantage.

        In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.

      • Steve H says:

        Dustin Moseley OPS against: .823
        Sergio Mtire OPS against: .791
        Royce Ring OPS against LHB: .679

        • Hughesus Christo says:

          Where the hell are you getting these numbers. Ring has thrown 2.1 MLB innings in the last two seasons… and they sucked.

        • That.

          All of the following pitchers in contention for the last three spots in the bullpen are pitching poorly: Burnett, Nova, Javy, Gaudin, Mitre, Moseley, Nova, Ring.

          Seven of them provide one skill and one skill only: length.
          One of them provides one skill and one skill only: being a lefty.

          To fill out those last three spots, we chose three of the first skill and none of the second skill. I don’t get that.

          • Tim says:

            Perhaps because the one with the second skill hasn’t demonstrated that he actually possesses that second skill in the major leagues in over two years, and in his albeit brief opportunity to address it this year was terrible.

            I think the take home here is that there does not exist a situation in which Girardi would choose to use Royce Ring in this series. 4th inning, bases loaded, Thome up, starter coming out – I think he goes Robertson to finish the inning, then starts the next inning with either Mitre or Moseley. And let’s face it, wouldn’t you rather have Robertson pitching in that situation than Royce Ring?

            There is an extremely slim chance that either (or both) Mitre and Moseley appear in a game in this series. There was NO chance Ring would appear. That seems to be Girardi’s thinking here, and to be honest I can’t argue with it.

    • Graig not Craig says:

      Ring has pitched to 11 MLB lefties this year resulting in 5 on base. That history does not inspire postseason confidence. Mitre has pitched to 17 Minnesota lefties this year resulting in 5 on base. Small samples – but Mitre’s experience and results cause me to choose him over Ring’s handedness.

  25. Masato Tanaka says:

    Since Austin Kearns was acquired, the Yankee lineup against an opposing starting LHP has only had Gardner AND Granderson in there together 3 times (in 22 such games).

    Furthermore, Brett Gardner has been benched the last 6 times the Yankees have faced a starting LHP, and most of these games were in close proximity of each other (so the idea that Gardner could use a day off for rest doesn’t hold).

    Is there anybody else worried that they might start Kearns in some of these games against the lefties??

    • vin says:

      “Furthermore, Brett Gardner has been benched the last 6 times the Yankees have faced a starting LHP, and most of these games were in close proximity of each other (so the idea that Gardner could use a day off for rest doesn’t hold). ”

      I think Brett’s wrist injury was the primary impetus behind him being benched. If you’re going to give ABs to a guy who is fighting through an injury, you might as well give him the best opportunity to succeed.

      Pure speculation, but I think Girardi plans on playing the regulars in each game – with Berkman and Thames being the only platoon-ers.

      I like Gardy and Grandy covering major ground in Target Field. And I definitely wouldn’t take Grandy’s lefty bat out of the lineup against Deunsing in YS3.

  26. CountryClub says:

    I’m surprised AJ is on the roster. Since he’s going to pitch a game in the ALCS, I figured he would throw a simulated game in Tampa during the ALDS.

    • Graig not Craig says:

      Let’s be rational. AJ is there for the pies. That is it.

    • vin says:

      I don’t mind him being on the roster in case of emergency. Mo-forbid one of the starters gets hit with a line drive or something. I’d rather AJ get out there in the 2nd inning than Moseley. And the leash can be short with him because Mitre and Moseley are on the roster.

      That’s obviously an extreme circumstance, but I think the inclusion of the 3 long men is more about the short relievers who didn’t get the job done during their auditions than anything else.

      If Alby had results anywhere near what he did in SWB, then he could’ve been on the roster. Or if Nova finished a bit stronger than he did, he would be going to Minnesota.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        It’s a bit of an extreme, but not all that extreme. Doesn’t have to be a line drive. Could just be ineffectiveness. In a really low leverage spot you could argue for Mitre/Moseley to keep AJ on track for the ALCS (if that’s an issue in a given situation) or you could argue for giving AJ a shot to see what he’s got without worrying about the downside for several runs. If it’s late into extra innings and all other options are exhausted… I might go with AJ and hope he brings his A game for an inning or two.

  27. JerseyDutch says:

    No Gaudin? Who do we put in when we’re up by 10 runs?

  28. Ted Nelson says:

    “Ramiro Pena gets the nod over Nunez likely because of seniority, but it was the correct choice anyway. Neither player can hit and at least Pena can play stellar defense.”

    Nunez is a bad hitter, but Pena hit about as well as Andy Pettitte this season (I know… sample size… but it says a lot).

    If someone gets hurt can they be replaced on the roster in-series? If so, then sure Pena is a better defensive replacement. If not and an IFer goes down in game 1 or 2 I’d much rather have Nunez to replace him than Pena. Even if an IFer has to miss one game Nunez v. Pena is maybe 4 at bats could be the difference in the series. I’d probably rather have CC hitting than Pena this season…

    So, I don’t think it’s obvious Pena is the right choice.

    • vin says:

      “If someone gets hurt can they be replaced on the roster in-series? ”

      I’m almost certain that a roster move can be made for an injured player.

    • Masato Tanaka says:

      I think Pena will be used more as a pinch-runner than anything else. I don’t honestly expect to see him get any at-bats or any time in the field, unless Joe Girardi does something crazy like pinch-running ARod out of the game (like he did last October) and then needing a new 3B. That’s probably the only way you’ll see the decision of Pena vs Nunez actually matter.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        Nunez is a significantly better baserunner than Pena, so I sort of doubt that’s why they made the move. It could be seniority (taking A-Rod/Jeter/Cano out of a blow out, so doesn’t really matter who goes in) and/or defense (because Nunez is a better hitter and baserunner than Pena).

        • Masato Tanaka says:

          Well then Pena must have made it for defensive purposes, which is scary since it means Girardi will likely pinch-run for ARod and maybe even Cano in a close game. I can’t imagine any other scenario where Pena would be needed in the field since I doubt Girardi will yank Jeter in a close game in the 9th inning for a defensive upgrade.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Yeah, that’s one scenario where Pena might be used. It seems like that might be what they’re thinking of with Pena over Nunez.

            Others include:
            -A blow-out game (in either direction really, but probably especially with the Yankees up) to give someone a rest.
            -An injury.

            I think you take your best players into the series, and to me that’s Nunez over Pena. Maybe to the Yankees that’s Pena (which makes sense considering how long they stuck with him and left Nunez in AAA) and/or they want to use him as a defensive replacement as you mention. Even then… the risk of having to go through the order again after pinch-running could be mitigated with Nunez (better hitter) and Nunez could save one player by being the pinch runner and IF defensive replacement.

          • Am I the only Kevin? says:

            Girardi will PR for Arod, so I can see Girardi wanting to have Pena for his defensive superiority (even if Nunez is a vastly superior runner).

            I think the bigger factor, however, is that Nunez is not really able to play second. The whole point of a utility infielder is the security of having a player that can play passable defense at all infield positions. While you won’t see Jeter or Cano getting days off or PH/PR for, there is always the outside chance of in-game injury that you want to hedge against.

            So, in my mind Pena was always going – the last bench position was always between Nunez and Golson, and Golson won because he was OF instead of IF.

            • Girardi’s not pinch running for A-Rod. This isn’t the first time Girardi’s managed this club in the postseason. He might not make the best bullpen moves, but he’s not going to burn his big bats.

              • Am I the only Kevin? says:

                This is a non-argument. He has already pinch run for Arod in late/extra inning situations in relatively big regular season games this year. I don’t think he’ll play the post-season any differently. If you are down one run in the ninth and Arod gets a leadoff walk, Arod’s big bat isn’t going to come up again unless you score that inning.

                As for this not being Girardi’s first dance, remember he started Molina twice in a five game series.

  29. UncleArgyle says:

    I’m not sure I understand why Burnett has a roster spot. What senario exactly would the Yankees use him in? At this point I wouldn’t trust him even with a big lead, and putting him in when your trailing is basically conceeding the game. Anyway, Hopefully I wont find out.

    • At this point I wouldn’t trust him even with a big lead, and putting him in when your trailing is basically conceding the game.

      Would I trust Burnett with a big lead? No.

      Would I trust him more than Mitre, Moseley, Gaudin, Nova, or Javy? Yeah, probably. That’s all that matters.

      • UncleArgyle says:

        Really? Its 6-1 in the 6th. You have confidence that Burnett won’t allow the first 5 batters he faces to reach? At least Mitre can get ground balls (in theory). Then again they all sorta suck, and me worrying about what the Yankees will do with a big lead is sort of going over board I guess…

        • Ted Nelson says:

          “Would I trust him more than Mitre, Moseley, Gaudin, Nova, or Javy? Yeah, probably. That’s all that matters.”

          Agreed, and I’d even go further. To actually use him Mitre and Moseley might matter, but just for the roster spot those two don’t even matter.

        • Tim says:

          Yeah, I would trust that the first 5 batters won’t reach.

          It really amazes me how the media-fed bashing of Burnett has escalated to levels beyond human comprehension. Has the guy had a tough, inconsistent year? Yes, absolutely. Anyone who turns out ten starts where he allows 6+ ER is truly inconsistent. But in his other 23 starts, he was 10-5, 2.60. From the way the media and some fans talk, you’d think the guy was the worst thing on two legs.

          I’m not saying that the guy is fully trustworthy or that he deserves a start in this series. The series is set-up for a three man rotation, and any way you slice it he is the fourth best starter on the team. But come on – the guy is a pretty darned good major league pitcher who has delivered in key spots in the past. I have no worries about him starting in the LCS and WS in the four hole if (when) the time comes.

          • Thomas says:

            From the way the media and some fans talk, you’d think the guy was the worst thing on two legs.

            Among the 92 eligible pitchers, he has the third worst ERA in baseball, 8th worst FIP, 16th worst xFIP, and 11th worst WAR. Maybe he isn’t the worst, but he is pretty close.

            • Ted Nelson says:

              I agree that he’s been bad (you could go with a stronger word, too), but 92 pitchers divided by 30 teams means he’s a 3rd or 4th starter in terms of the number of innings he was allowed to pitch… it also most likely means that a lot of guys filling the other 58 rotation spots were probably not effective enough to hold onto their spots (and some got hurt of course).

              The innings a pitcher goes certainly has a lot to do with subjective judgments by the manager, pitching coach, and organization, but there also something to being allowed to throw that many innings on a team as good and organization as rich as the Yankees. If nothing else it’s testament to what he’s theoretically capable of and that they don’t think it’s an injury issue.

              Again, I’m not saying he’s been good. He’s been a huge disappointment this season. Still, though, that doesn’t mean his stuff might not be valuable out of the bullpen or that he might not get it together for one or two big starts.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            You are right that the bashing goes too far. Part of it is the expectations that come in partially from stuff and past performance, but also in large part because of how much bloody money the Yankees gave him.

            “I have no worries about him starting in the LCS and WS in the four hole if (when) the time comes.”

            I would definitely not go that far… no worries? 10 starts with 6+ ERs and poor overall numbers, and you have “no worries?” Starting him may be the best move and certainly he may deliver, but I am worried about it. If the Yankees are down in the series (if they beat the Twins) then I might prefer they start CC on short rest than risk it with AJ.

          • UncleArgyle says:

            Hey I was a big fan of the signing. I’d like to see AJ Burnett pitch well. But he’s been pretty boom and bust this year, and the busts have been very loud and frequent. I really don’t need to stretch my imagination that far to see AJ enter the game and allow, Single, Single, Walk, HBP, Double with a wild pitch throw in and now 4 runs on the board. Anyway if they make it to the ALCS, I guess he’s the guy you start game 4 at home. But I’d honestly rather start Nick Swisher than give AJ a road playoff start.

    • What senario exactly would the Yankees use him in?

      If Andy Pettitte’s back locks up and the Yanks have no better options. See, for instance, Game 5 of the 2003 World Series and David Wells.

  30. Seth Everett agrees with me, I don’t know how much water that holds though.

    Joe (SI)

    Mitre and Mosley over Nova? I would rather have Nova over one of those two, especially Mosley…

    Seth Everett
    (2:33 PM)

    I don’t disagree. Mitre over both of them, but Nova instead of Mosely.

  31. Mister Delaware says:

    22 man roster + 3 long relievers / mop-up men. Yikes.

    • UncleArgyle says:

      Agreed, having three “break glass in case of emergency” pitchers on the roster does seem worthless. I’d almost rather have Chad Mueller on the roster so we can pinch hit for Cervelli or pinch run for Posada. But then again 3 Catchers on the roster seems to be overwhelming for Girardi’s inner tactician.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        Will any team be carrying 3 Cs? That’s not to say that you have to go with the crowd, but sometimes conventional wisdom is right.

      • Mister Delaware says:

        I’d be happier just carrying Ring and Nova over Mitre and Moseley. Not because I think they’re necessarily better pitchers, but because I can see a potential use for them.

  32. Graig not Craig says:

    I feel bad for Javy. This has got to hurt. But I understand his season was abysmal and his postseason ERA is 10.34 over 15.2 innings. Maybe he would do better if he pitched with a team like the Pirates.

  33. mustang says:

    I’m a little down that Nova didn’t make it, but if it means taking AJ then there is nothing to say.

    For some reason, don’t ask me why, I get the feeling AJ is going to do something real good this series coming out of the pen.

    I’m calling AJ my sleeper for the series.

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