Poll: With the game on the line…

Eight runs not enough, Angels walk-off with win
Boone Logan, Relief Ace
(REUTERS/Alex Gallardo)

The Yankees lost their two best late-game relievers to injury this month, forcing everyone in the bullpen to jump up two notches in responsibility. The eighth and ninth innings have been fine, but we saw the trickle down effect of not having Mariano Rivera and David Robertson last night when David Phelps was brought into the game with the bases loaded in the sixth and was later allowed to pitch through a bases loaded jam in the seventh. It’s trial by fire.

Robertson played catch yesterday for the second time since injuring his oblique about three weeks ago and reported no problems. He still needs to throw off a mound and in a few minor league rehab games before rejoining the team, but the good news is that he doesn’t seem to be too far off. Until he returns, the Yankees and Joe Girardi are going to have to get what they can out of this crop of relievers and ask some guys to pitch in big spots. Phelps allowed a two-run double in that sixth inning but otherwise did okay.

Last night’s game got me thinking about the current state of the bullpen sans Robertson and Mo, specifically about the most reliable arm out there right now. The Yankees are forced to use guys like Phelps in familiar roles due to injury, but they still have some really effective late-game relievers at their disposal. The question is, who do you think is the most reliable? Who is the team’s relief ace at the moment? I’m going to expand on this a little later, but I wanted to get your thoughts first.

Who do you want on the mound with the game on the line?
View Results
Eight runs not enough, Angels walk-off with win
Boone Logan, Relief Ace
  • mt

    Anyone who answers Freddy Garcia should be banned from RAB :-)

    • Nick

      Anyone who answers Freddy should be banned from breathing!

      • The Troll Monger

        I voted Freddy just because his proven ability and sustained success.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          Freddy is ELITE……if you borrow my time machine.

  • CC

    Bring me Boone

  • Jonathan

    I guess it depends. If a lefty is up I want Boone. Otherwise I’d take Soriano. This could be a huge break for us. If absolutely everything breaks right we have a tiny chance to get Mo back for the playoffs (ask Yovani Gallardo how long it took him and he wasn’t a RP). And if Soriano pitches well maybe he opts out of his last year of his deal. That $14MM would go a long way if we have Mo/Robertson/Logan/Wade/Joba and probably Hughes and no need for another late game reliever. However, we need money to lock up Granderson/Cano, a RF and C and of course pitching (possibly Hamels/Greinke). Also if Soriano pitches well we can use Robertson as the fireman and the lack of saves will keep his arbitration # down.

    • Virginia Yankee

      David Aardsma and Joba may be back some time after the all star break. Unfortunately Mo hasn’t even had his surgery yet, so the chances of him being back at all this season are very low I presume.

      If the bullpen is strong up until reinforcements come, I expect it to be very strong afterward.

      I too hold out hope that Soriano has a strong year to the benefit of the team and to increase the likelihoo he opts out.

    • OldYanksFan

      Really… there are more guys that had their careers ended by this injury than guys who came back early.

      If Mo is still Mo next year, that would be blessing enough.

      • Jonathan

        I guess you missed the part where I said, “If absolutely everything breaks right we have a tiny chance”?.

  • Ghost of Mariano Rivera

    Injured Mo.

  • TheOneWhoKnocks

    I chose MFIKY but had to give Boone Logan some serious consideration the guy has been nasty

    • jjyank

      I had the same thought process. If there were two lefties due up or something, I probably would go with Boone.

      • Cris Pengiucci

        I’m with you two. I’m actually surprised the voting wasn’t closer.

        Since Girardi has Soriano in the “closer” role, we probably wouldn’t see him in a high-leverage situation that wasn’t a save situation as well. If Soriano wouldn’t be brought in, my choice right now would be Logan. He’s been doing quite well for a while now, going back to last season.

  • TheOneWhoKnocks

    Also, why are there other poll options besides Logan and Soriano? No one in their right mind would take someone other than those 2

    • jjyank

      I think Wade should be at least in the conversation, but yeah, nobody else really.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      It’d be interesting to see what the thinking of someone who’d pick one of the others was. I toyed with picking Wade.

  • blee

    Maybe Hughes? … why is it that batters seem to know what pitch is coming? he was throwing 94mph fastballs on the corners, and curve was dropping from head to knee.. but he never gets swings and misses.. they seem to always know whats coming.. always timed right..

    He has to be tipping his pitches or he doesnt hide the ball at all.. weird..

    • jsbrendog

      never gets swings and misses? he is averaging 8.4 k per 9. i mean, yeah he throws a lot of pitches but he ks a lot of guys too. I am hoping that he is starting to figure it out. 3 of his last 4 starts have been good so if the next 2 are bad i feel like he is a lost cause…but i am still optimistic since the last 3 were good prior to last night

      • blee

        8.4 k/9 is pretty good.. but its not the sense i get when he gets lit up like this.. maybe some teams have the tipping data? others dont?.. yesterday his stuffs seems to say he should have had it all going.. curve was dropping, fb had life.. but batters knew what was coming.

        • blee

          just to make sure people dont get the right idea, i love hughes, and i even have him on my fantasy team (out of necessity, injuries, and desperatio.. but still i have some hope in him)..

        • jjyank

          The K/9 looks good, but he’s also been facing more batters per inning than a lot of guys on the staff. At least that’s what it seems like to me.

        • Deep Thoughts

          He got lit up because his fastball command was shitty and he was leaving it out over the plate.

      • MannyGeee

        Is there a foul ball per 9 stat out there anywhere? I feel he would be Hall-Worthy in that regard…

    • blee

      or maybe he’s just bad.. sigh.

  • Bavarian Yankee

    voted for Soriano. Logan was been pretty awesome lately, so it was pretty close call between Soriano and Logan.

  • Pat D

    I went with Soriano. He still is the one, after all, who “knows” how to close games.

    I can’t blame Wade too much for last night. Trumbo’s a power hitter. Now, if he had given up that shot to someone like Aybar or Wilson or Bourjos…then I’d be pissed.

    • V

      I’m fine with Soriano as the ‘closer’. But I prefer Boone right now ‘when the game is on the line’.

  • Stephen

    A year ago I probably wouldn’t believe this, but I’m going to have to go with Boone. He has been deadly this year, lefty and righty. Soriano is a perfectly choice, too.

  • MannyGeee

    Scary, I never thought Id be voting for Boone on a poll like this, yet here we are.

  • DJ4K&Monterowasdinero

    Soriano. He has the magic prayer written inside his cap that he takes off and reads before the inning. He takes his sign in the middle of his windup (amazing!), never shakes off a sign, shows no emotion and pulls that shirt out of his pants after slapping his glove at game end.

    Soriano for the save!

  • Wil Nieves Number 1 Fan

    Soriano, Boone, and Wade are all fine options, however I’d want to reserve Soriano for the 9th (just because). Both Boone and Wade have been excellent this year and are both capable of handling these situations.

  • Manny’s BanWagon

    How about none of the above.

  • Alfred

    None of the above.

    They’re all decent-to-good with regard to their spot on the pecking order(not counting our Sweaty mop-up man), but none are great. This makes for a good bullpen, but you never are comfortable since they can all give up leads.

    If you’d really make me choose, I’d say Logan by default.

  • jsbrendog

    nick swisher.

  • Erica

    I chose Boone.

    I would never have picked him before this year – go Boonie, go!

  • OldYanksFan

    There are few teams who would want their 3rd best RP in there with the game on the line. Most of these guys have been decent, and all of these guys are very capable of giving up a HR.

  • vin

    I think something’s wrong with my Poll… there’s no Mo or Robertson. :(

    I chose Wade, just because he gives me less agita than Soriano or even Logan. I have trust in Wade like I have trust in Pettitte (last night not-withstanding). Can’t really explain why.

  • http://www.yankeeanalysts.com Eric

    The Boone Logan fan club officially picks Boone Logan as the best option with the game on the line. There are dozens of us (well, really just 3, but we are accepting applications).

  • Robinson Tilapia

    Went with Logan, then fired up the whiskey.

  • Duzzi23

    I’d have to say Soriano given that list. I’ve seen Boone suck for 2 whole years and Wade even though he has been pretty impressive minus yesterdays game gets by on smoke and mirrors. All the people killing the Soriano signing last year especially Mike have to be happy with what he has done in the absence of Mariano. Hopefully he keeps it up and Robertson comes back and we can use Logan, Wade, and Phelps in the middle innings.

    • CC

      I mean, no, you haven’t seen Boone suck for 2 whole years because, well, he hasn’t.

  • Clay Rapada

    Man, why don’t you guys give me some support???

  • Voice of Reason

    I really do not understand how anyone could vote Soriano over Logan right now, let alone how he could win by such a wide margin. It’s quite clear that Logan’s turned a new leaf and is an entirely different pitcher from years past. He’s been one of the most dominant relievers in baseball. What’s the argument for Soriano? Established Closer?

  • Duzzi23

    Soriano has been good everywhere he has pitched whether it was Seattle, Atlanta, or when he was the best non Mariano closer in the league with Tampa Bay. Boone has underachieved to be either really shitty or average most of his career and I would like to see a bigger sample size of him being a “dominant” reliever than just 7 weeks.