The Bullpen Problem

Freddy, bullpen hammered in loss to ChiSox
The Second Base Logjam
(REUTERS/Jeff Haynes)

Deep and reliable bullpens have been a staple of the Joe Girardi era, as the Yankees started to shy away from multi-year contracts for free agent relievers and instead focused on building flexibility from within and off the scrap heap. Oh sure, there still is the occasional Rafael Soriano and Pedro Feliciano, but signings like that are no longer the norm. Unfortunately, an effective middle relief unit ahead of Soriano and David Robertson is no longer the norm these days either.

Joe Girardi had to run through five different relievers after Freddy Garcia was unable to complete five innings last night, and those five combined to allow four runs and eight baserunners in 3.2 innings. It was the second time in the last five games that the bullpen turned a winnable game into a multi-run loss, and during the month of the August the relief corps has pitched to a 4.28 ERA (3.53 FIP) in 48.1 innings. It’s a 3.92 ERA (3.59 FIP) in 181.1 innings since the start of June, a not small sample. I honestly don’t want to figure out what those numbers would be without Soriano, hands down the club’s best reliever this year.

The bullpen problems all started with Mariano Rivera‘s injury in May and were compounded when Cory Wade completely imploded a few weeks later. It was obvious the Yankees needed a quality bullpen arm — not Chad Qualls, not Derek Lowe, someone they could actually use in high-leverage spots — when Robertson hit the DL along with Mo in May, but the club decided to hang tight for a while to see what developed internally. A lot of faith was placed in Joba Chamberlain coming off his two injuries and he hasn’t rewarded that faith one bit since returning a few weeks ago. I’ve been saying it for months, they couldn’t count on him until they actually saw what he looked like against big league hitters. Those were two very serious injuries.

Anyway, the the decision to avoid the reliever trade market has left the Yankees with two excellent late-game arms and a handful of misfit toy middle relievers. Boone Logan leads the league in games pitched and looks more and more gassed with each appearance, and lefty counterpart Clay Rapada is a specialist in the truest sense of the term. Cody Eppley is a right-handed specialist and in case you haven’t noticed, he’s been pretty bad for close to eight weeks now — nine runs and 29 baserunners in his last 21 appearances (16.1 innings). That’s not the kind of middle relief help the Yankees have employed in recent years, not even close.

Of course, the real problem here is that we’re beyond the point of no return. Swinging a trade this late in the season for a quality arm is damn near impossible, especially since the Yankees have the best record in the league and thus the lowest waiver priority. Anytime a decent reliever hits the waiver wire, count on the Orioles and/or Rays blocking him. I’ll be the first time to admit that trading for relief help can be sketchy, but sometimes it’s just flat out unavoidable. You have to take risks to contend and trading for relievers when you need bullpen help qualifies as a risk in my book.

The Triple-A bullpen is mostly barren, thanks in part due to injuries as well as a late-Spring Training trade that sent the club’s best MLB-ready relief arm out west in exchange for a no-hit, meh-defense backup catcher. Wade has been okay since being demoted, nothing that would make you think his command issues have been corrected. Chase Whitley has legit big league potential, but he might not be ready yet. Justin Thomas, Ryota Igarashi, Manny Delcarmen … guys like that are cannon fodder, not viable middle relief aid. We’re all excited about Mark Montgomery, but the fact that we’re even talking about a kid with 17 career innings above Single-A as potential bullpen help is a sign of how little depth the Yankees have at the moment.

The good news is that help is on the way, at least in theory. CC Sabathia is expected to come off the DL on Friday, pushing David Phelps and his multi-inning ability back into the bullpen where he can soak up some of those middle innings. He would have been perfect for a game like last night’s. Andy Pettitte‘s return is still weeks away, but if he makes it back it could mean another relief arm in the form of Phil Hughes, Freddy Garcia, or Ivan Nova. Feliciano is pitching in rehab games and David Aardsma is throwing bullpen sessions, but again counting on guys coming off major injuries is even riskier than trading for relievers. This group represents their only options at the moment, however.

“We know (struggles are) part of the game,” said Logan after last night’s game. “That’s the way it works. We’re still a good bullpen. It’s funny how when someone struggles, we all struggle. It seems like we all struggle at the same time. Once we all start getting on a roll, we’ll all get on a roll, and get back to where we need to be.”

The Yankees have a very obvious weakness in their middle relief right now, moreso than at any point in the last three or four years. They have run into some bad injury luck, no doubt about it, but also made their own bed with the trade deadline inactivity and general over-reliance on Joba. Pretty much the only way to improve things right now is to hope the guys currently in the bullpen rediscover their previous forms, particularly Logan and Eppley. Getting Sabathia back and getting more length out of the starters in general will help limit the exposure of the middle relievers, but they can’t be avoided forever.

Freddy, bullpen hammered in loss to ChiSox
The Second Base Logjam
  • Eddard

    Phelps needs to be in the pen to give an extra righty for the 6th-7th innings. Otherwise, we only have two reliable relievers and they only pitch the 8th and 9th. Rapada and Eppley should be cut. Jobber should be down in the minors working on getting back to form. The pen isn’t as big of an issue when a fully healthy CC and Andy are in the rotation because they can go 7 but now they’re just overworked and that’s the fault of Nova and Hughes.

  • ADam

    Shocked that Lowe was not first out of the pen. Girardi must have been going through mix/match withdrawal.

    • MannyGeee

      live by the binder, die by the binder.

    • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

      “From Zero to Hero in a Week: The Derek Lowe Story.”

  • Stan the Man

    I don’t think the sky is falling though just because they didn’t swing a trade for a piece that would have cost them too much and most likely wouldn’t help at all. Injuries to the starting rotation are taking its toll and certainly getting CC back will help the bullpen get some rest and get exposed less. Chamberlain needs to pitch better, we know Logan can be pretty damn good but running him out there every other night and keeping him out there for multiple innings isn’t good. Because of the injuries to the starters the bullpen isn’t being used to its strengths.

    On another note, the offense is still ridiculously inconsistent. The White Sox aren’t running out there shut down guys in their middle relief either so going the last innings w/o getting any runs on the board isn’t good either.

    • MannyGeee

      we scored 6 runs last night.

      On any other night that the bullpen doesnt implode (mind you, being handed a bases loaded 1-out jam to work out of doesnt help…), 6 runs get you there.

  • Rich in NJ

    I would start Phelps and make Garcia the long reliever.

    • Nick

      Agreed. I think Phelps is the better starter at the moment anyway and Garcia was pretty good out of the pen. Long term thinking says Phelps should stay where he is.

  • Brendan

    “It was obvious the Yankees needed to a quality bullpen arm”

    Holy Christ, get a proofreader, even Microsoft Word would have picked up this crap.

    • MannyGeee

      dude, are you an English teacher when you’re not posting here? relax, typos and grammer mistakes add to the campy-ness of RAB.

      You want proper grammer, go over to LoHud with the rest of the bridge-jumpers.

    • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

      Start your own fucking blog, then.

      • Slu

        You need to calm down. This ain’t your blog either bud and he is entitled to his opinion.

        And while I don’t agree with the manner in which it was stated, there are way too many typos on this blog. A lot of content is generated on a daily basis, but the errors are distracting. Now, go tell me to GTFO or something else clever.

        • Cris Pengiucci

          Hey, you want it to be better? Volunteer your time to proof read and correct everything (in 5 minutes or less), many times a day so that there are fewer typos or gramatical errors. I’m sure you (or Brendan) won’t catch them all either.

        • jjyank

          Mike has said in the past to use the tip box to help with corrections. There’s no need to blast him for typos publically, especially considering how much time and effort is put in at zero cost to you.

          • Jim Is Bored

            This this this this this we’ve had this argument 423235 million times.

            Use the damn tip box.

        • emac2

          People need to send cash or STFU.

          What kind of spoiled child is going to lodge a pubic complaint about something free not being good enough.

          It’s really sort of sickening

        • Robinson Tilapia

          No. As a fellow site owner, I stand by my original statement. Show some respect for the people providing you an outlet for your entertainment.

    • A.D.

      Microsoft Word would not have picked it up

  • Blah

    I think the main problem has been injuries as Mike said. Mo – out since May. Robertson – out 6 weeks. Pettite/CC – took Garcia and Phelps out of the bullpen. Results: People in roles they’re not supposed to be in.

    Then Mike asked, why didn’t Yankees get a relief arm in light of all the injuries?

    How do you know Cashman didn’t try? Maybe he didn’t see any deals he liked. Cash has never been the air everything in the public eye type of GM. Perhaps combination of large lead in standings + people coming back from injuries lessened relative need.

    There were lots of buyers this year with the new wildcard and few sellers at the deadline.

    • JohnnyC

      The Cashman apologists are legion.

    • MannyGeee

      this… if Cashman trades for an ‘impact reliever’, it likely would have cost too much and that would have been the story here…

      • JohnnyC

        Define cost too much. Trading Kontos for Stewart. Wasn’t that too much? Trading Montero for Pinhead and Campos. Wasn’t that too much? The Cubs wanted Profar and Olt for Dempster. Did they get them? No. It’s called negotiating. Spare me the excuses for Cashman’s indecision.

  • Andy Pettitte’s Fibula (formerly Manny’s BanWagon)

    I think the solution is obvious. Now that the Rocket has made a comeback, sign him to pitch out of the pen.

    He was reportedly hitting 87 the other day. By mid September, he should ready to roll.

    • MannyGeee

      because I think we’re all ready for this again…

      • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

        Never gets old.

        Clemens to da 6th!

    • Heisenberg’s Hat


  • blake

    bunch of guys turning in to pumpkins at once…not much Joe can do unfortunately.

    I think they maybe put too much stock in Joba at the deadline given what he’s coming back from….he still could find it and they really need him to.

    Things should improve as others have said when Sabathia and Andy get back because you can move Phelps back there but they still need another big time arm in the back end with Soriano and Robertson ideally….whether Joba gets it together and becomes that or Nova or Hughes down the stretch….somebody needs to be that 3rd good short reliever.

  • Yankeefan

    would the yankees consider sending joba down for 10 days to fix himself up ?

    • JohnnyC

      You think?

    • MannyGeee

      i think he might be the guy to go down when CC comes back. shake it out for 10 days and come back up when the rosters expand.

  • gjyank

    You have someone who is the long man – Lowe. You have a starter flame out early. You need a ground ball. Your long man specializes in getting ground balls. So you bring in a ROOGY? Giradi has done a good job of managing bullpens over the years. I know some folks kill him for the mix and match stuff in the 7th and 8th innings. I can live with it usually. But it’s the freakin 5th – bring in Lowe who is stretched out and let him try to go 3 or 4 innings. That’s what he’s here for, isn’t it?

    • JohnnyC

      Too logical.

    • MannyGeee

      butbutbutbut… THA BINDERZ!!!!!!!

    • jjyank

      Your name is far too similar to mine.

      • Cesar “Stairs” Cabral

        RIP gjyank. You will not come first in the alfabetical odor.

        • jjyank

          Ha no, I just was confused for a second. I thought I blacked out and made a comment I don’t remember, while mispelling my handle.

    • Buffalo Bill

      Well, you know – Eppley is pretty damn good at getting ground balls, too. And he’s probably pitched better overall than Lowe, and has more experience getting out of jams coming in to the middle of an inning than Lowe. But since Joe made the call to Eppley, and because it didn’t work, it MUST be wrong. Right?

      • Heisenberg’s Hat

        Eppley didn’t actually do anything wrong. He got the groundball, it just wasn’t turned into a DP.

  • jjyank

    Yeah, the best bet is to probably hope CC (and eventually) Andy come back strong. Some innings-eating will go a long way towards giving the bullpen a rest. That’s probably the best bet, as I don’t have a lot of faith in Feliciano or Aardsma being saviors.

    • Cris Pengiucci

      Just by getting CC back, you add to the ‘pen. Either Phelps or Freddy will move out there and hopefully that will help. That may help even moreso than the innings he (and then possibly Andy) eat.

      I was a bit surprised Lowe wasn’t brought in. They should look at him again to see if he’s got anything and could possibly be a usefull piece in the playoffs. With them likely only using 4 SPs then, they need to sort this stuff out.

  • Hoss

    Girardi has burned out Wade, Logan and the OOGYs. I may get flamed for this here, but a guy that would be really useful would be Kevin Millwood. He could pitch out of the bullpen and eat innings or face righties instead of Joba or Eppley.
    Anyone know if he has made it through trade waivers?

    • JohnnyC

      Girardi chose to go to Eppley instead of Lowe in a situation that cried out for a long man. What makes you think he would use Millwood any differently?

      • Hoss

        If he had Millwood instead of Eppley pitching out of the bullpen. Joba seems to be a certainty to be sent down when CC comes off the DL.

      • MattG

        I am confused as to how that “cried out for a long man.” Is that because the pitching change came in the fifth inning?

        Crying out for long man: winning, or (especially) losing, by a lot.

        Not crying out for long man: close game, current inning notwithstanding.

        • Need Pitching & Hitting

          Not crying out for Joba: MLB game of any score/inning.

          • Heisenberg’s Hat

            Sadly, you’re right.

  • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

    I think you’re correct in pinpointing a lot of the problem, Mike. I just don’t think making a deadline deal would have solved the problem. Someone said it above: that pitcher may have been part of the story as well.

    I sincerely doubt the team intended to go into the season with specialists galore, but it’s become what it’s become and burning through Rapada and Eppley, who don’t do what they’re supposed to a lot of the time, just serves to leave the cupboard even barer once you’re through with them. The bridge to Qualls indeed.

    The dependence on Joba and Aardsma’s return was pretty silly as well. We all now think everyone’s Steven Strasburg when they come back to TJS. More than usual, they’re Octavio Dotel. They take a while.

    Logan’s strong performance for a while there gave people but he looks, at best, gassed and, at worst, like he’s regressing back to what people previously thought he was. Cory Wade? Sigh.

    Healthy pieces returning to the rotation means some pitchers get pushed to the bullpen. That could be a plus. I’m mocking those calling for Lowe because they’re the same names knocking the team for signing him but, in reality, Derek Lowe’s a solid vet who probably could fill a better role here, regardless of how he may have looked the first half of the season. Players can, and will, actually start playing better sometimes. It’s not a straight line down.

    • JohnnyC

      I’m sure the Braves were thinking the same thing about their bullpen last September. They didn’t start pitching better. Maybe Cashman was watching. Maybe not.

      • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

        I wish bullpen building were an exact science but, more than often, you’re throwing shit at a wall. Some of the shit isn’t sticking and it’s August. I don’t know what to say.

        I’m only half-kidding when I say we should petition MLB to allow Rapada/Eppley to just alternate batters and have Girardi be able to put them BACK into the game. OK, maybe I am kidding.

        • Mike HC

          Actually, with the modern game pitching use of pulling the starter after 100 pitches and using 12 middle relievers for 3 outs, your idea of allowing relief pitchers to re enter the game is not the worst idea in the world.

          • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

            Well, it is when I’m advocating for those two. :)

  • split-finger

    Why isn’t joba in double A

  • Mike HC

    Having two dominant guys in Robertson and Soriano, even with nothing else, is not too bad. Come playoff time, it will hopefully be starter for 6-7 innings, and then Robertson and Soriano for 2-3 innnings. A lefty specialist for an out or two only maybe. Everything else will fall to our 5/6th starter who does not make the playoff rotation. Hopefully Girardi is not as careful with Soriano as he had been with Mo in the playoffs. You gotta use your best guys even if it is not a “save” situation.

  • Jill Poock

    Joba is not ready that much is clear. He needs to go to the minors and get innings and get straightened out. I don’t know who they can replace him with but he is not the answer. We are stuck with this bullpen. To late in the year to replace anyone. Live and die by them I guess.

  • DM

    “the decision to avoid the reliever trade market…”

    I don’t think Cashman chooses to “avoid” any trade market, reliever or otherwise. Like any other GM, he’s engaged in trying to improve his team any way he can; but it still boils down to whether a particular deal makes sense or not.

    • Mike HC

      With the extra wild card, and more teams in contention, there are probably less teams selling than we have become accustomed too.

    • jjyank

      Right. Considering his “ninja” reputation, it’s not fair to assume who he did and didn’t make calls about. Bullpens get hot, bullpens fall apart. Such is life of a middle relief corp.

    • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

      He also actually did make moves. The type of fodder available often resembles a guy like Chad Qualls, a guy who’s had past success but is now a fungible piece (I blame Francesa for putting the word “fungible” back in our lexicon, btw) at best.

  • Jay

    Phelps has to go to the pen when CC comes back. Is Phelps the better starter between him and Garcia (and Nova right now), yes. But there’s no point in having both Garcia and Lowe in the pen. Both would just be long men. Phelps could be big in the pen, and be the bridge to Robertson and Soriano.

  • Chad Gaudin the Friendly Ghost

    I wonder what Montgomery could do. It seems to me that bullpen guys can hide their deficiencies a bit longer and therefore have a higher probability of being effective for the stretch run.

    This is just wondering out loud, but is it possible to ruin a bullpen arm by bringing him up too fast? I know if you bring up position players and pitchers you can mess up their confidence and they can mess up their mechanics by trying to do too much, but I think that a guy like that out of the pen in the middle innings might be a decent option.

    • JohnnyC

      Montgomery hasn’t been lights out in AA. Good but not unhittable. His FB command is spotty and even AA hitters can just take his slider if he’s not throwing strikes with the FB. I like his future but his future is not now.

      • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster


      • Richard Leo

        K/9 14.82 BB/9 2.65 FIP 1.55
        all the above are better than what he dia in High-A
        He still lights out in AA
        He has only given up a homerun to a guy named Manny Machado.
        And he is still unhittable, 11H in 17IP is great.
        However,i also believe he is not ready for the big league.

        • MattG

          You can’t scout the stat line. If the scouts say his fastball command is not what it should be, all your pixels are irrelevant.

          But I guess you know this, since you wrote, “i also believe he is not ready for the big league.”

  • Kosmo

    If Sabathia comes back healthy then the “problem“ might be fixed.

    What´s the story on Whitley? Any good ? He´s the only farmhand I could come up with outside of Monty.

    Marmol or Shawn Camp anyone?

    Glen Perkins, Esmil Rodgers, Belisle, Jared Burton, Luke Gregerson ?

    • JohnnyC

      According to RAB commenters, any or all of the above relievers would have required Cashman giving up Gary Sanchez, Mason Williams, Tyler Austin and Chris Dickerson in return. Of course, Dickerson was the deal-breaker.

      • jjyank

        Nobody said that.

        • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster


          Those names are fine and dandy (actually, I haven’t even heard of one of them, but I’ll take Kosmo’s word for it), but they could just easily become part of the problem as much as fix it.

          • JohnnyC

            Padres were willing to trade Gregerson for Daniel Murphy last month. Alderson turned the deal down. I suppose David Adams or Corban Joseph is untouchable so why even think about it.

      • Havok9120

        Strawman much?

    • Richard Leo

      Whitley is good but i believe he is not ready for the big league.
      He has done a decent but not great job in AAA

  • JohnnyC

    Look at the Rays’ bullpen. A guy who was trading hedge funds while Cashman was acting as Joe Torre’s foot servant is making our GM look like a slow learner.

    • MattG

      Because Friedman is brilliant doesn’t mean Cashman’s a dunce.

  • vin

    “The Yankees have a very obvious weakness in their middle relief right now, moreso than at any point in the last three or four years. ”

    I’m not necessarily refuting the point because my memory isn’t great, and I’m too lazy to research it, but I’m pretty sure we go through this every single year.

    We know bullpens are volatile. Less talented pitchers can get on a roll and earn too much trust from the manager, and it takes a period like this to determine if the guy is capable, or if he was merely on a roll earlier in the season. Also, it’s very possible that the answer is somewhere in between… he wasn’t as good as he was earlier, nor is he as bad as he is now. Just have to keep swapping out parts, until guys get back on track. Unfortunately, the injuries to Mo, Pettitte, CC, Pineda, Banuelos, etc has stretched the depth pretty thin.

    I’m all in favor of calling up Wade, and demoting Eppley… more of a change of scenery than anything else. I think Wade got unfairly banished to AAA. Not to say he didn’t deserve a demotion, but a guy like that should’ve been called up by now. I think what’s been keeping him down is a combination of a numbers game, and Girardi still having trust in guys who “earned” it two months earlier.

    • JohnnyC

      What’s kept Wade down is lack of command. Same thing that had him demoted. Of course Wade would be back up if he showed a sliver of improvement. He hasn’t. And there are no swappable parts in the AAA or AA bullpen. That is totally on Cashman. They have all these OOGYs not by design but because it’s the only arms they deem major league feasible. That and the false security of a substantial division lead snowballed on Cashman. Now, as Mike points out, it’s too late to fix it. Ninja my ass.

      • Havok9120

        It was the rock of the team for months when the starters couldn’t win a game to save their lives. Its been very very good for years now. I’m not saying none of its on Cashman, nor am I denying that Cashman apologists actually do exist. But your Cashman bashing is just as bad and non-conducive to discussion. You can’t blame the guy for all the screwups and give him no credit for what’s gone/is going right.

        He’s either the root cause of the team’s results or he isn’t. Switching from one outlook to the other as fits your agenda is just silly.

        • JohnnyC

          Why is it bashing to point out the facts? I’m not saying fire Cashman. I’m saying he’s done a less than great job of maintaining an effective bullpen THIS season. THIS season. Who’s talking root cause? I didn’t say anything about any other part of the team. We’re specifically addressing the bullpen. What agenda are you talking about?

          • jjyank

            And for awhile THIS season, the bullpen was doing very well. And I’d love to know what your inside sources are that describe what players on other teams were available, what players Cashman called about, and what the asking prices on those players are. Every thing you’re saying is pure speculation and there is nothing you can say that can legitimately say that it’s Cashman’s “fault” for not making a theoretical move.

            Would it have been a good idea to upgrade the bullpen for the right price? Sure, it always is. But we don’t know anything about any of those negotiations.

    • jjyank

      I don’t know about Wade/Eppley, but totally agreed with the rest of your comment. How many teams have a consistant bullpen over the course of the entire season? It wasn’t all that long ago we were singing their praises. Such is life of middle relievers. The rotation and the bullpen are also closely linked, so helping the rotation (CC and Andy) should help the bullpen too.

  • Darren

    Joba needs to stay
    Double A will never help
    To regain his form

    • Robinson Tilapia aka Melky’s Webmaster

      He needs to be out there a lot, though and, if the team only feels like they can use him in low-leverage situation, it really does hurt the depth. Perhaps if this was, say, May, I’d be in 100% agreement with you.

      • Darren

        As Mike said above
        There is no depth we are screwed
        No better options

        • Robinson Tilapia

          Rosters expand in a week and a half, though. It’s not great depth, but it’s depth nonetheless. You actually can give Lowe more work. If his stuff doesn’t hold up due to age, then it doesn’t hold up, but lord knows he’s not going to buckle in higher-pressure situations.

    • Richard Leo

      sometimes we are too harsh on the guy who just came back from serious injury.

      • Heisenberg’s Hat

        It’s not harshness. Joba simply can’t perform at this level right now. He’s given up runs every time he’s been brought into a game. That cannot happen.

    • JohnnyC

      The Yankees don’t operate to benefit Joba. It’s the other way around. If he needs to refine his command with more innings, those innings should be in AAA. It’s okay if he doesn’t pitch in the majors until next season. Them’s the breaks.

      • Darren

        Not for Joba’s sake
        October THEY will need HIM
        Must suffer for now

        • JohnnyC

          I love your attempts at posting haikus. Do you like Ashberry?

          • Darren

            Especially at the intersection of Hate.

            (sorry, being stupid, what’s Ashberry? Ok, let me go look….)

            ahah! never heard of him. I should be ashamed! But I did find this line from one of his works:

            “Too low for nettles but it is exactly the way people
            think and feel”

            Commentary on the limitations of UZR?

          • Robinson Tilapia

            Holy shit. I just noticed. Please keep it up.

    • Chad Gaudin the Friendly Ghost

      Did you make that a haiku on purpose?

  • Jamey

    Clearly The Yankees fear there’s some minor league assassin that would come after Joba if he ever pitched more than a handful of games there.

  • roadrider

    Phelps to the pen to bail out Freddie? How about Freddie to the pen so we’re not running a guy out there every 5th day that needs to be bailed out in the 5th inning?

    Logan, Eppley, Wade – they didn’t turn into pumpkins – they always were pumpkins! Been saying that all along. I’m not blaming Cashman or Girardi for that. I’m just saying that everyone got too carried away on small sample sizes with these guys.

    That said, Girardi has to lay off the mix-and-match stuff with the one-out guys before the late innings.

  • The Real Greg

    No one here has mentioned 26 year old Kelvin Perez.

    In AA and AAA this year, he is 7-1 with a 1.03 ERA in about 80 innings.