Freakin’ finally: Here’s Britton

I’m surprised we didn’t find this earlier. Buried at the bottom of Tyler Kepner’s game story:

The Yankees recalled the right-hander Chris Britton after the game. They needed a fresh pitcher after Sean Henn allowed nine runs on Monday.

Congratulations, Chris. You’ve overcome all the odds. Now languish in the bullpen like all of the other pitchers not in the circle of trust.

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Turns out that Chris Britton isn’t sleeping with Cashman’s wife; he’s sleeping with Torre’s wife

From the Official Site:

The manager said he planned to speak with Henn, who has had two games end on this road trip while he has been on the mound. Henn is expecting the birth of his first child in the near future and has “a lot of things going on,” Torre said. … General manager Brian Cashman inquired about stocking the Yankees with another pitcher from the Minor Leagues, Torre said, but the early-morning telephone offer was rejected.

Isn’t this what the bereavement list is for? To let guys take a short leave to deal with personal stuff while allowing the team to call someone up in his place?

Get used to this Chris Britton (140 career OPS+), this is your life. Ridiculous.

(hat tip to NoMaas)

Chris Britton watched this game in a hotel room surrounded by empty beer bottles and hot women

It’s 3:30 a.m. Do you know where your Chris Britton is?

This evening, I left work at around 6:30, had drinks and dinner and saw a show at the NYC Fringe Festival. I came home at 12:30 a.m. with all of the intention of going to bed. Instead, it was the 4th inning. So I watched 8 painful innings of baseball. Lovely.

Here’s your recap in convenient bullet-point form. Yes, I’m bitter at this game.

  • From the “I’m Just Saying” Department: Chris Britton in the Minors this year: 56.0 IP, 49 H, 14 BB, 57 K, 2.41 ERA. Chris Britton in the Majors this year: 5.0 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K, 1.80 ERA. And yet, Sean Henn?
  • Mariano Rivera has now given up 15 hits over his 7.1 IP. Add three runners via the BB, and his WHIP during that stretch is an unsightly 2.53. This isn’t just a stretch of a few games. This is a stretch of seven appearances in which at least one runner is on base. Something is not right.
  • Sean Henn should not be pitching in the bullpen for the New York Yankees. It’s that simple. He’s blown two games in extra innings this week, and whereas Chris Britton throws strikes, Henn has a 1:1 K:BB ratio. He can’t buy his way into the strike zone.
  • I hate to be the one to write this, but the Yanks are looking mighty dead in the water right now. Because of Sean Henn, they are now four behind behind the Mariners in the loss column in the Wild Card race and are essentially finished in the AL East. They’re 6.5 behind the Red Sox, and it will take a six-game sweep of the remaining season series for the Yanks to have any shot at catching Boston. The Mariners also need to start losing.
  • Can no Yankee reliever pitch more than one inning at a time?
  • Do the Yanks have a strategy in the late innings? Bunting with Derek Jeter and not with Robinson Cano. Going inside on Carlos Guillen after he missed outside pitches. Pitching to Carlos Guillen with a horrendously ineffective Ivan Rodriguez on deck. Sure, hindsight is 20-20, but these were things I was shouting to my TV as the game unfolded. What does Joe Torre know that no one else does around here?
  • Seriously. Inside pitches from Sean Henn are batting practice fastballs. Let me beat that dead horse for a few more bullet points.
  • Roger Clemens has to pitch better than this if the Yanks are going to make it past the end of September this year. For $1 million a start, he can’t pitch like Mike Mussina every time he goes out there. With this lackluster effort tonight, six of his 14 starts have been pretty pathetic.

That’s it. I’m going to bed. What a way for the Yanks’ season to start heading down the drain.

Thanks to Emma for the inspiration behind the title of this post.

How’s Chris Britton doing these days, anyway?

Before that hit, Ryan Budde was 1 for 11 in 9 games with the Angels. A 28-year-old rookie, he’s in the Majors only because everyone else is hurt. But GOOD JOB SEAN HENN! WAY TO GO. I stayed up until 2 a.m. for that the shear pleasure of watching Joe Torre and the Yankees snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Ugh.

The fat reliever! He lives!

Does anyone particularly want to relive last night’s game? It was simply excruciating. As much as we’ve advocated Mighty Matt on this site, even we can’t avoid the glum conclusion that he’s never going to start a game for the Yankees again. In fact, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him DFA’d to make room for whomever will be called up today. It’s sad to see such a hard-working, smart kid bite the dust, but that’s baseball for ya. Here’s to hoping he catches on with another team.

The problem, apparently, was his inability to throw strikes — which has been his problem all season. He threw just 44 pitches last night (though that was through an inning and a third), 23 of which were strikes. A starting pitcher just isn’t going to get by with that kind of performance. He only walked one batter, but it was only a matter of time before he issued more free passes. Some may say it was a quick hook by Torre, but it’s tough to argue with it.

What you can argue (and by all means should) was his decision to replace DeSalvo with Ron Villone. Remember this: Ron Villone also doesn’t throw a high percentage of strikes. This is why many of us had no desire to see him return this season: beyond his abused arm, he walks too many guys for a reliever. He hit a nice string last summer of stellar performances, but that’s looking more and more like luck at this point. Jim Thome’s home run is a great example. Having trouble throwing strikes, he just kind of laid one in there. According to Enhanced Gameday (which does have its flaws), that pitch was a straight fastball right down the middle. Of course Jim Thome’s going to take it deep.

Finally, though, we saw Chris Britton. The dude may be fat, but he sure can pitch. He threw three full innings, retiring the first nine batters he faced before Paul Konerko took him over the wall. Now, consider this: when was the last time he pitched (Mike, this one is for you)? Not all weekend, certainly. And now he’s called on for a third inning. I’d say that’s pretty impressive. He walked no one, and the only hit he surrendered was the homer. Oh, and he threw 63% of his pitches for strikes. There is no reason for him to return to Scranton.

Lastly, it’s time to complain about the offense. Jon Garland allowed seven hits and issued three walks, and the Yanks still couldn’t put anything together. Josh Phelps’s two double plays didn’t help — though he certainly hit the ball hard on at least one of them (didn’t see the other). Hey, sometimes you hit it hard and it’s right to someone — like Konerko’s drive to left center that landed in Matsui’s glove. So yeah, the two DPs and the error hurt, but he also drove in one of the team’s runs. Give him time to settle into an everyday role, and he’ll be just fine at first. Well, that, and hours and hours of fungoes from Larry Bowa.

T-Clip vs. Mark Buehrle tonight. We just need six innings from Clip. Proctor is rested, so you can hand him the ball for two or give Bruney an inning before Mo. Or we could just blow them out and not need the top guys. No word yet on who will take DeSalvo’s spot. Rotoworld is saying it’s Basak. We’ll keep you posted.

Last 7 Days
Sorry about yesterday’s lack of an update. The database wasn’t updated nearly in time to get it in.

Melky: 444/476/722 — Melky man, raking!
Cano: 429/520/810 — three walks in seven days. It’s a modern-day miracle!
Abreu: 389/522/611 — I’m loving the top 3
Jorge: 346/370/577
Matsui: 346/370/385
Phelps: 312/389/312 — keep him in the lineup and watch that slugging percentage rise
Alex: 238/407/429
Damon: 143/308/286
Jeter: 111/143/259 — not good to see our Nos. 1 and 2 hitters at the bottom

Pitching mismanagement

Pitcher A (MLB): 26 IP, 24 H, 21 ER, 20 BB, 13 K, 7.27 ERA
Pitcher B (AAA): 23 IP, 20 H, 2 ER, 9 BB, 26 K, 0.78 ERA

How many innings does it take to get Chris Britton into Luis Vizcaino’s role? Is there some magic point at which Vizcaino turns from pumpkin to princess? The season ain’t gettin’ any younger.