Apr
25

Yankees can’t overcome Hughes, drop rubber game to Rangers

By

It hasn’t been a good 48 hours for the Yankees, who officially lost Michael Pineda for the season and lost twice to the Rangers during that time. Wednesday night’s series finale was a 7-3 loss for New York.

(REUTERS/Mike Stone)

Awe-Phil

I spent the last three or four years defending Phil Hughes the starting pitcher in this space, but I’m done with it. End the charade and put him in the bullpen already. If the Yankees had given Joba Chamberlain half the leash they’ve given Hughes, they might actually have a young, quality starting pitcher on their hands. But no, his stuff played up in the bullpen. Apparently that logic doesn’t apply to Phil.

Hughes retired seven of the first eight Rangers he faced — Adrian Beltre led off the second with a monster solo homer to dead center — but six of the next seven men reached base to end his night. I know Texas is good, really really good, but we’ve seen this movie before and the ending hasn’t changed yet. Phil’s fastball is still plenty good enough that he can be useful as a short reliever, so do it already. Hopefully Joe Girardi‘s relatively quick hook is a sign they’re losing patience with Hughes.

One Foot In The Batters Box …

(REUTERS/Mike Stone)

… and the other on the plane. The Yankees checked out of this game offensively in about the fifth inning, after they stranded a runner at second base in a two-run fourth inning. Eighteen of the final 20 batters the Yankees sent to the plate made outs, with the two exceptions being a long solo homer by Raul Ibanez in the seventh and an opposite field double by Nick Swisher in the ninth. Just no fight, they were ready to get back in their beds back home.

The Bullpen

The blush is officially starting to come off the David Phelps rose, as he allowed three runs in 2.1 innings of work. He’s allowed six runs and 16 baserunners in his last two appearances, spanning 6.1 innings. Sure, the Red Sox and Rangers are two great hitting teams, but Phelps isn’t going to steal Hughes’ rotation spot like that. Clay Rapada (0.1 IP), Cody Eppley (1.1 IP), Boone Logan (0.1 IP), and Rafael Soriano (1 IP) all made scoreless appearances, though none of them recorded a strikeout oddly enough.

(REUTERS/Mike Stone)

Leftovers

Derek Jeter led the game off with a single to extend his hitting streak to 15 games. He had another knock later on and is now hitting .420/.442/.642 on the season. Mark Teixeira managed to beat a) the shift with a line drive single the other way, and b) out an infield single. He also didn’t both to run out a weak little grounder that rolled foul then back fair, instead trying to play it off like it hit his foot. Robinson Cano singled and Eric Chavez drove in a run with a sacrifice fly.

Not for nothing, but Ibanez can really hit the ball a long way when he connects. His run-scoring ground rule double in the fourth looked like a bloop single off the bat, but that sucker carried out to the left-center field warning track. The homer was a moonshot as well, landing in the second deck down the right field line. Ibanez’s three homers this season have traveled like, a combined 1,800 feet. As Buck Showalter would say, his damage-to-contact ratio is off the charts.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Standings

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs some more stats, and ESPN the updated standings.


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next

The Yankees are on their way back to New York and have Thursday off. They open a three-game series with the Tigers on Friday night, when Ivan Nova gets the ball against Justin Verlander. If you want to head to the Stadium for that one, check out RAB Tickets.

Categories : Game Stories
  • Slu

    Here Here on Hughes. Andy can’t get here fast enough.

  • https://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

    I don’t even care enough about Phil Hughes to put him in the bullpen. He’d just be an overhyped fifth or sixth guy on the depth chart at this point.

    • forensic

      yup, that’s how bad he is. Odds are the only guy he’d be better at his job than is Eppley.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Man, I hope the sarcasm meters are working better today.

  • Billion$Bullpen

    “I spent the last three or four years defending Phil Hughes the starting pitcher in this space, but I’m done with it. End the charade and put him in the bullpen already. If the Yankees had given Joba Chamberlain half the leash they’ve given Hughes, they might actually have a young, quality starting pitcher on their hands.”

    Thanks.

    Now just repent for the Jeter hate, and we might be best buddies.

    • Dino Velvet

      Bartlo Colon says “fire Cashman”

    • Kevin Winters

      If the Yankees had given Joba Chamberlain half the leash they’ve given Hughes, they might actually have a young, quality starting pitcher on their hands

      —————–

      One of the dumbest things they did with Joba was create that fake battle in 2010 and stuff him in the pen. They chose Hughes because he was seen as the better bet going forward. Why not stuff Joba in AAA and have him work as a starter because who knows what the future holds. I understand he may have gotten injured starting but so be it at least you would know if he could hold up or not. But now we have him as a reliever and Hughes seems destined for the pen.

  • forensic

    30 baserunners in 16 innings for Hughes this season.

    5 runners inherited from him by the lefty specialists in the bullpen with all 5 stranded. If even two of them score he’s at an even 9.00 ERA on the season.

    • forensic

      Oops, my bad. I forgot about the 2 HBP from today. That gives him 32 baserunners in 16 innings for a pretty 2.00 WHIP.

      • LK

        Technically, HBPs don’t count in WHIP. They do count in awfulness though, which is about the only thing Hughes has excelled in so far this year.

  • forensic

    He’s hasn’t pitched well his last two times out, but it’s not like Phelps is in an easy spot. He doesn’t have time to warm up all his pitches and see what he’s got until after he’s in the game already and he has to come in to face a lineup who’s locked in after having just destroyed the starter.

    • Kevin Winters

      Very well said.

    • flamingo

      Yes. It’s also ridiculous to expect him to be lights-out every time up. He got out of that bases-loaded situation well; I’m happy with that.

      • forensic

        If you’re talking about the bases loaded situation tonight, that was Clay Rapada, not Phelps.

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

          I think he meant the one in the next inning, the one Phelps created himself (with some help from the IBB).

          • forensic

            Oh yeah, sorry, my bad. So focused on Hughes created misery tonight.

  • pistol pete

    I think Hughes will be good in the bullpen. He’s good for an inning or two but just can’t get through a lineup a second time or log enough innings to start. It’s scarry when you consider that since the All Star break in 2010 through an entire season in 2011 and 4 starts in 2012 he has an era over 6. Nobody can survive an era at that level and now the sample covers parts of three years. He’s got to go to the pen now. Try Phelps or Warren as fifth starter until Andy’s ready and get Phil used to the pen where he was really good for most of 2009. He has no value right now as a starter but should have solid value in the pen.

  • Naved

    Mike is not happy.

    • jayd808

      Meh. He always has Sweaty Freddie and Eduardo Nunez to kick around.

      • Ivan Nova

        And me if I get lit up by the Tigers on Friday.

  • Dino Velvet

    Bartlo Colon says “fire Cashman”.

  • forensic

    If only Hughes hadn’t gotten historically (yes, historically) high run support in 2010 and won 18 games (one of which was in refief too), maybe we wouldn’t still be having to deal with this crap every 5 days.

    • nsalem

      It was more than the historical run support he got ijn the first half of 2010, It was the historically bad offenses he faced. The third time he beat the Orioles they were 16 and 42, he beat the 25 and 39 Astros.The 34 and 52 Mariners and the 17 and 29 Indians. When he beat the White Sox in May 2010 I think there was only one starter hitting over .235. Some of the clean up hitters he faced included Kurt Suzuki, Jose Lopez, Austin Kearns and Andruw Jones in a righty righty match up. The sooner he is in the bullpen the better and i think he will mak a valuable contribution in that role.

      • J

        Really good point. The guy has just been clearly over rated.

  • forensic

    Hopefully Joe Girardi’s relatively quick hook is a sign they’re losing patience with Hughes.

    I highly doubt it. I think it was just a sign that the bullpen was moderately rested and they have a day off tomorrow.

    • Kevin Winters

      Yea right

      MarcCarig “Our plans are to send him out there again.” – Girardi on Hughes

      • Kevin Winters

        you’re

      • Dino Velvet

        what other choice do they have? Petitte is still 4 weeks away from returning.

        • Jesse

          4 weeks seems a bit much. Their target date for his return is May 10. Something would have gone wrong if he can’t make it by then.

    • LK

      The problem is, now that Pineda is gone for the year, it’s not clear how they can replace both Hughes and Garcia (who, let’s face it, isn’t doing any better than Hughes is). They don’t seem to think Phelps/Warren/Mitchell are rotation material in NY, and it’s obvious Banuelos/Betances aren’t ready. We just have to hope one of the two gets their shit together and Andy is able to contribute. Either way, with the offense/bullpen combo we should be OK as long as CC/Kuroda/Nova can form a solid top 3.

      This has been a tough day, but we’ve still got what it takes to take down anyone in the AL.

      • Will

        Garcia at least has a chance to return to last year’s form. Hughes is the worst player I’ve seen in 22 years as a Yankee fan. I can’t wait till I never have to see him pitch again.

        Really sad that the Yankees caved to fan pressure and traded Burnett, at least he was lights out in half his starts.

        • hogsmog

          Tony Womack?

          • http://riveravenueblues.com marty

            the worst? i think not. jaret wright? kevin brown? javier vazquez?

            • jsbrendog

              scott sanders? alvarao espinoza? eric plunk? the late 80s-early 90s are where the worst players ive seen on the yankees come from. this is just hyperbole

              • vin

                Please don’t rip on one of my two favorite payers from my childhood… Alvaro was the man! Terrible baseball player, yes. But he had that sweet two-toned glove.

                Fortunately my other favorite player was Rickey… He was good enough to make up for Espinoza’s ineptitude.

                I’m shocked to see Sanderson wasn’t that terrible in ’91. I remember him as being awful.

      • TomH

        This has been a tough day, but we’ve still got what it takes to take down anyone in the AL.

        Are you serious? It’s pretty clear that (at this point in the season) they are out of their class against Texas, the new Hegemon of the American League.

  • Long Time Lurker

    It’s kind of sad really. I spent years following Hughes through the minors, and every time he appeared to finally become a major league ready pitcher, there always seemed to be some sort of set back, be it that injury in Texas, general ineffectiveness, a dead arm, and now this. I just kept wanting to believe in him despite all that, having been told of his potential, and then…

    I wonder if this is what heartbreak is like.

  • Andrew

    “If the Yankees had given Joba Chamberlain half the leash they’ve given Hughes, they might actually have a young, quality starting pitcher on their hands. But no, his stuff played up in the bullpen. Apparently that logic doesn’t apply to Phil.”

    You could not put it any better Mike, well said!

    • theansky

      I couldn’t possible echo that sentiment any more.

      For years I have been a die-hard supporter and defender of all things Hughesian. This….this is painful

  • mustang

    Stop watching the game after while because as a Yankees fan I had enough:

    1- Pineda’s season is over while Montero going 3 for 5 with 2RBI (Don’t really care who was pitching and it’s not that I want the kid to do badly, but the timing sucked)

    2- Hughes got bombed.

    3- Phelps starting to look like in the right role (long relief).

    4- They are now looking at Andy for salvation.

    All this then I realize ITS FUCKING APIRL!

    Go take 3 out of next four 13-9 and move to easier part of schedule.

    Baseball season a marathon not sprint.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      Don’t really care who was pitching and it’s not that I want the kid to do badly, but the timing sucked)

      That’s a lie and a half.

      • mustang

        It’s really not, but do like to poke fun at the guys who label a guy “Miguel Cabrera” of minor league numbers.
        I have lost count of how many gone to be the next Mickey Mantle and Willie May I have seen since I started following this game.

        • mustang

          Furthermore Montero success only raises the stock of Yankees farm system which benefits the team I follow. His failure only would cause a downgrade of the Yankees system

          • Steve

            Forget Miguel Cabrera somebody (3 guesses who) not only repeatedly compared him to Albert Pujols but also made at least one Babe Ruth reference

            • mustang

              By the Pujols reference I’m guessing Cashman, but didn’t know about the Babe Ruth reference that’s good one by Cashman.

              Cashman being a salesman because if he truly believe that and trade him for Pineda anyway then he is a dumbass which he is not.

              • mustang

                But if your talking about one of us that’s easy, but I won’t him out like that.

                • mustang

                  I won’t put him out…

              • Jesse

                Yeah, the Pujols reference was made by Cashman. I believe it was when Pujols agreed to his deal with the Angels he (jokingly?) said that Pujols’ bat is “Montero-like”.

                • jsbrendog

                  no hr on the season, what a montero like bat haha. d’oh

  • Kiko Jones

    It has become painfully obvious that Hughes can’t handle more than 2 innings or a second time thru a lineup, whichever comes first. No amount of excuses can cover up this sad situation. The bullpen awaits.

  • Endlessmike

    I never like to see a young prospect fail but I never thought Phil Hughes would become a Verlander or a Hernadez. The yankees don’t get does kind of guys in the draft. But now we have to keep Hughhes in the rotation because Garcia is worse.

  • Tom

    Phil Hughes never learned how to pitch. It’s almost as if he thinks what he did one inning at a time in the bullpen could be strung together 6 innings at a time

    vs Righthanders today
    http://www.brooksbaseball.net/.....8;s_type=2
    Not a single fastball in just off the plate (to jam a hitter)… this is a consistent trend for Phil – it’s either way in or not at all. Also not a single fastball below the zone. As a result a righty hitter only has to worry about a fastball up or away. Also no changeups (another trend); while a change up is better against opposite handed hitters, righties can exclude it altogether when facing Phil

    vs lefties today
    http://www.brooksbaseball.net/.....8;s_type=2

    Once again, not a single fastball inside (other than WAY inside). He threw 1 curveball…. so like righty hitters Hughes essentially is a 2 pitch pitcher to each side of the plate. And apparently noone has told him changeups aren’t like fastballs – up is not a good thing. He had one pitch below the zone and that was the one curve he threw.

    So if you face Phil it’s either fastball/curve (righty hitter) or fastball/change (lefty) and you can ignore both the inside of the plate and the bottom of the zone. Short of signaling the hitter before each pitch, could Hughes be any more predictable? How do you expect to be an effective starting pitcher when you can’t even command a fastball to all quadrants? Or even locate your secondary stuff down in the zone? And it’s not like this start was an aberration with these tendencies….

    • Monterowasdinero

      Well said. Phil also has the demeanor and body language of a guy who is not competing with any fire. Demoralizing to watch.

  • forensic

    May 1st: Phil Hughes vs. Brian Matusz

    A case study of why not to fall in love with minor leaguers.

    • Jesse

      I need to take this advice and apply it to my love of Manny Banuelos, Jose Campos, and Mason Williams ASAP.

      • forensic

        I know you’ve had a crazy love and support of Hughes. Are you about done with him too or do you want to keep pressing on?

        • forensic

          Sorry, noticed below you just answered this. Didn’t mean to push too much.

          • Jesse

            I don’t mind you asking. I’ll be first to admit that my love for him is totally irrational.

            • forensic

              Yeah, I hoped it’d be fine, but with the last two days around here everyone’s been on a much shorter fuse than normal and I didn’t want it to seem like I was jumping all over you right away. Though in fairness you haven’t been in the middle of much of the stuff recently (that I’ve noticed at least).

            • Monterowasdinero

              Irrational love is very dangerous. Either they disappoint you or leave you.

              Love is a battlefield.

              Best to love players making 15-25M. They rarely leave or get sent down and every so often they may show they are worth the money.

              • Billion$Bullpen

                Good god a Pat Benatar reference. ROFL

  • Fin

    I figured Hughes would be a serviceable number 5, he doesnt appear to have the ability to even be that. Seems like the best place for him is the pen. Hes been bad for a long time now. If Garcia doesnt pitch any better its time to start auditioning the young guys, starting with Phelps.

  • forensic

    Avoiding lots of attention tonight is A-Rod. He’s once again dropped to dead last (non-Russell Martin division) on the team in slugging and second to last (non-Russell Martin division) on the team in BA. He’s barely edged out a couple of other guys in OBP.

    Cano is hopefully starting to get going a little bit, but he still leaves something to be desired too.

    As the 3-4 hitters in the lineup, they absolutely have to improve on their team-low (other than Chavez’s 0-2) identical 3-17 (.176) performances with RISP thus far for the team to really improve.

    • DT

      Well with Arod, there is some signs of optimism along with some signs of concern. His BB% and k% are above career rates. His LD% is at 19%, yet he has a absurdly low .240 BABIP. These are good signs for his future in terms of AVG/OBP. Off course a concern would be his low FB% at only 24.5%.

    • Monterowasdinero

      Not worried about Cano but ARod is always a worry now. His fb bat speed is poor and he can be pitched to inside with a fb. He is healthy so no excuses there so far. Odds on him making it through the season without DL time? 50/50? A day off for ARod is a very good thing these days.

  • Kevin

    I’m sorry but look at what the Rays,Texas and Detroit have done compared to Cashman. It’s time for new blood,it really is.

    • DT

      Rays and Tigers depended on young pitchers, and lucky for them their young power arms didn’t get injured. Ours did. If Price or Verlander had a shoulder injury early in their career they’d be in the same boat as us right now. Very little to do with what Cashman can control or not.

      • dalelama

        Luck is how you explain the success of those you don’t like.

        • Kevin Winters

          lol all joking aside you’re not that far off though.

    • Jesse

      Please. The Yankees are still an elite team and they have just as much of a chance as those teams to win it all.

      • dalelama

        Not with the way our hitters choke in the post season.

    • jsbrendog

      what, be horrendously awful for a couple years so you cand raft verlander, moore, price, etc? oh yeah, man i hope he yankees fucking suck so bad this yr they get to pick in thetop 5 next yr like the tigers and rays did for a few years back when they drafted verlander and moore, and price.

  • DT

    This why we traded for/need Pineda partly because Hughes is a huge bust. Too bad Pineda is out, because i don’t ever want to see Hughes pitch again. I wish we had a time machine and went back got rid of Hughes instead of AJ…yea i don’t like him to that extent.

  • Kiko Jones

    Speaking of AJ, he recently made his debut with the Pirates vs the reigning World Champs. So, how did he do against the Cardinals?

    7 IN, 76 P, 0 R, 3 H, 7 SO, 2 BB.

    • RetroRob

      NL baseball. Gotta love it.

    • Len S.

      I’d like to see what his next start is going to be like. Two pitchers I’m never going to pine for and that’s AJ and Kyle Farnsworth. I don’t care if they discover the cure for cancer. If Hughes and Garcia stink then put a minor-leaguer in their place.

    • Jesse

      They shoulda kept him, Cashman keeps screwing up, this team’s doomed :(

      • Len S.

        People actually still want AJ? Holy cow! What a difference a year makes.

  • Who’s Your Daddy?

    I don’t know what you do (unless you go to a four man rotation) because both Garcia and Hughes aren’t looking so hot right now and Andy will only replace one of them. I guess you could give Phelps a shot. Isn’t Roy Oswalt still a free agent BTW?

    • Len S.

      Sign that motherfucker right now!

      • Who’s Your Daddy?

        I’m just surprised he hasn’t been signed yet! Maybe a 1-year contract would be a good idea at this point? I don’t know, I haven’t seen much of Oswalt so I’ll let you guys figure it out. From his numbers I figure he’d be a suitable four or five guy given this situation. If it’s just for one year it shouldn’t impact the budget too much. Without Pineda, if these bad starts continue it might be necessary.

        Anyway, I’m sure Cashman has thought about it given the stuff that’s just gone down. (Is it safe to assume Oswalt would take a 1 year deal now because nobody else shows signs of wanting him?)

        • forensic

          Eh, on February 26th I’d be all in on this. But, on April 26th, not so much. It’d take him longer than Pettitte to be ready and at this point it’d be better to start trying out some of the AAA guys to see if you hit on anything for even a short time (though of course they won’t do that because obviously Hughes and Garcia have such a long-term future with the Yankees still).

          • Who’s Your Daddy?

            That’s a good point, I forgot that these guys have to get ready… by the time he’s warmed up for the season the problem will probably have solved itself.

    • Jesse

      I think the Yankees are more likely to go to a 6-man rotation than a 4-man rotation.

  • Jesse

    I’m with Axisa on this one. I’ve defended Hughes the starter for a long, long time. But this game is the game where I officially jump ship. Texas has a great lineup, but he shouldn’t fail to get out of the third inning. I do think he’ll thrive in the bullpen once (if?) he gets demoted to the ‘pen, though it’ll likely be in more lower leverage situations, which kinda sucks for selfish reasons.

  • Ari Gold

    In Phil’s defense it’s not exactly like him or any of the other prospects he came up with were managed properly. By other prospects I mean Clippard, Kennedy, and Joba who were either rushed to the bigs or rushed out of town.

    I know it can be debated all day if these guys were given a fair shake and could have made lemons out of lemonade but the blame can’t simply be lumped onto them for not succeeding in New York.

    • forensic

      Oh, the organization is absolutely horrid in their track record of getting good things to happen with their prospects, but he’s been given chance after chance after chance to figure it out and he just doesn’t have it.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    ah, another Phil Hughes classic. Too bad we got Hughes AND Garcia, that looks like an awful combo right now. Let’s face it: Hughes has no future as a starter, no putaway pitch, no command. Let’s end this adventure quickly.

  • Kevin

    IMO, the main problem with the prospects is when you play for a team that is World Series or bust,you get rushed. That’s exactly what has happened with HUghes,JOba etc.

  • dj

    BoSox are having issues with their young pitching as well. Look at Lester and Bucholz. Bucholz was horrible again tonight. Lester had a bad second half last year, and is off to a bad start this year as well.

    • TomH

      Boston’s pitching woes are no consolation to me. The power balance seems to be shifting away from that NY-Boston axis to one that runs from Texas to Detroit. (I’d have added Tampa Bay but that would screw up the “axis” metaphor.)

  • dj

    Hughes’ 2010 was a complete anomaly that the Yankees agravatingly keep talking about. The announcers and team keep saying, “this is a guy who won 18 games a couple years ago” when in reality, like every one here is saying, he had historical run support. He was actually an average pitcher at best that year. He hasn’t been the same as a starter since the hamstring injury in Texas. He looked like a dominant pitcher until that injury. Same thing happened with Joba. Looked like we had a dominant ace on our hands until the shoulder injury in Texas.

    • Jeremy Herniman

      His numbers were great the first half of 2010. He was an All Star. Actually, I believe he started the game if I remember correctly. His K/9, era and whip were all good. since then he has been awful though. He was great in the pen in 09, postseason aside.

      • I’m sexy and I Cano it

        Hughes didn’t start that ASG, and actually got the loss in that game.

  • Brian

    With you on Phil. He reminds me of Kei Igawa, everything is up in the zone, which is why he can’t get a swing and miss on anything other than the fastball.

    Put him in the pen and let him throw nothing but fastballs at this point.

  • Monterowasdinero

    I still have faith that Freddy will be serviceable as a 5th starter. He has >10 quality years as a starter and his stuff is not dependent on velocity. He will get it together. I think he can be a .500 pitcher for us.

  • Monterowasdinero

    NFL Draft-take us away from Pineda/Hughes and crappy hitting conversations for a day!

    • Manny’s BanWagon

      I agree 100000000%. I need a break from the Yankees and their troubles for a few days.

      NFL draft is like a 2nd Christmas.

  • Monty

    D.J. Mitchell looks pretty ready and he’s not getting any younger. Warren is also 26. Instead of babying Phil maybe it’s time to give these guys a shot before they’re 30. I’m sure on any other team they’d be in the big league rotation.

    • Manny’s BanWagon

      Warren has been shaky in AAA. What makes you think he’ll be any better than Hughes?

      I’d let Hughes start until Pettitte is ready and then whoever is pitching worse between Hughes and Freddy goes to the pen.

      • TomH

        Warren “has been shaky.” I read that Banuelos and Betances are shaky too. Exactly where is this formidable Yankee minor league pitching strength?

  • bobmac

    I couldn’t agree more that the team seemed to throw in the towel after they fell behind.They swing early in counts and couldn’t wait to get on the plane home.No bueno.

  • The Good Times Are Killing Me

    That awesome feeling from Saturday’s comeback seems like a such a distant memory. Fuck this game sometimes.

  • mt

    Can’t think of a day more negative for me as a Yanks/Knicks/Rangers fan in terms of results and news – Yanks lose as Hughes implodes; Mets win: BoSox win with Aceves avoiding the blown save and another collapse by skin of his teeth, Pineda out for year (and who knows longer?); Montero catches a Felix Hernandez good game (and survives!) and does well at plate (I hate looking at what Montero does each day since trade cannot be “won” based on these daily results but yesterday it was hard to resist looking at Jesus given the Pineda news).

    Only good thing that counteracts all this negativity is that Bruins got eliminated – YES!!- I take great pleasure the day every year when the Boston team in one of the four major sports is eliminated.

    Not sure if it is a positive or negative that Knicks beat Clips – not sure I want them to play Bulls or Heat – I guess reluctantly I want them to play the Heat for better entertainment value since I do not like watching Bulls play. Knicks will lose either way, I suspect.

    On another Pineda note, reaction to Pineda from Yank fans whenever he comes back will be even more hostile if Montero does well this year or worse yet if Jesus wins Rookie of Year. Not fair but it will happen. The kid does not know what he has in store for him.

    I go back and forth on the Pineda trade – I still am positive that it was a good thing to do but there is one development since trade has helped to make trade look worse – even if Montero is bad as a catcher, if he physically can play the position, wouldn’t you rather have him as low cost below average defensive catcher (that can rake at plate) versus an ovepaid free agent Russell Martin (given the Yadier Molina contract)? If we have to pay Russell Martin or even Miguel Montero some ridiculous contract that makes us less likely to keep 2 out of Swisher, Cano and Grandy. wouldn’t it have been better to keep below average defensive cathcer Jesus? (Romine being MIA also does not help.)

    • DJ4K&Monterowasdinero

      Why yes I would and would have!

  • LeftyLarry

    Hughes has a straight fastball with nothing tricky about his delivery to help his offspeed pitches which often hang, he doesn’t foool anybody and his heater is not overpowering.
    No out pitch, his straight 91-94 heater is fouled off with 2 strikes and he doesn’t put hitters to bed.
    He needs a good splitter or something and some deception in his delivery almost looks like he’s tipping off his pitches.

    • Frank

      Couldn’t agree more. Very straight, hittable FB. Doesn’t matter how hard he throws it. Most MLB hitters will crush that pitch, especially when it’s right down the middle as it often is.

  • Bonnie Parker

    Phil’s done as a starter, at least for this organization. Joe looked extremely frustrated when he came to take out Phil. And Joe is a guy who will stand by his guys and give them multiple chances like he did with Jorgie last year but Phil’s had his opportunities and he’s failed. He had a present giftwrapped for him when Pineda was out for the year and he still couldn’t keep his rotation spot. Phelps is in until Andy gets here.

    • http://twitter.com/#!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

      Nope. What did Phelps do last night to prove himself worthy of a rotation spot?

  • Michael Cole and Tazz

    Does Hughes even have any trade value at this point?

    • Slu

      I’d say minimal value to a NL team. Especially since he is not making the league minimum. But it is addition by subtraction at this point.

  • Frank

    Hughes to the BP. In the off season, look to move him and close this chapter. His confidence has to be at an all time low and it’s probably best if he got a fresh start somewhere else (where he will likely excell of course).

  • jjyank

    Sigh. I’m sorry Phil, but I just can’t be optimistic for you anymore. I tried, but your starts are getting really hard to watch.

    I realize this is a pipe dream and not likely to happen, but does anyone thing that Hughes’ struggles might encourage the team to have Joba rehab as a starter and see what happens? I really don’t see a downside. If Joba is mowing guys down for 6 inning stints in minor league rehab games, what do the Yanks have to lose? Aardsma could essentially replace Joba in the bullpen (not that the bullpen is even a problem really). Thoughts?

    I know, the ship has probably sailed, but a man can dream, no?

    • the Other Steve S.

      I think this makes perfect sense. I also thinkthere is no chance it will happen.

    • Kevin Winters

      Yea it probably won’t happen but he should get a shot. The Yankees are in no position to be picky. Kuroda,Freddy, and Andy are on 1 yr deals, the B’s need more time, Hughes looks lost, and Phelps and co. could be in the mix but it would be hard to put the pressure on them to fill out the rotation. A guy like Hamels is out of the question because they want to lower payroll.

      As I mentioned earlier in this thread instead of sending him to the pen they should have sent him to the minors. They banked on Hughes and it bit them in the ass.

  • J

    When Axisa gives up on you, you know it’s over.