As many of you who are loyal readers know I often make my articles to long to make you want to read it right from the get go. So in an effort to engage more of you I have decided to break it up into a few sections. First lets talk about what went right in the first half, namely the pitching.
For many years the bombers have lived on the long ball. Lets face it not only do chicks dig it but it brings fans to the park every day. The days of the Yankees leading the way via the HR are over.( At least for now) In order to survive, which the Yankees are doing being only 3 games out of the wild card, you have to have good pitching. Lets start with the starters. Here is a summery of their numbers
1 CC Sabathia 9-7 with an era of 4.07 is not what the Yankees expect from CC but have no fear history tells us that he is a second half guy and I think you will see him with close to 20 wins and an era under 4 come September
2. Hiroki Kuroda 8-6 2.85 era. If you break it down he has easily been the best starter to date. He is a victim of lack of run support. He should easily be 10-4 with a 2.00 era with a little more offence. we will talk about that in future report cards.
3.Andy Pettitte 7-6 4.39 Andy is his own worst critic. He is also the beneficiary of an the most offence when he is on the mound. He has won his last four starts but has also given up four in each of those outings. I’m not sold on Andy I think that he will break down in august and you will see him back on the DL. I hope im wrong but Im not counting on him for the long haul. That said should the Yankees make the playoffs nobody is better under pressure than Pettitte. Those of you who are Pettitte fans know exactly what I’m talking about
4. Phil Hughes. 4-9 with an ERA of 4.57 but don’t think that he is without value. He is only 27 years old and has a four+ quality pitches and can touch 95 mph with the fast ball. Phil has been a victim of the long ball. Yankees stadium does not now and never will favor the fly ball type pitcher. Hughes should be packing his bags as Its all but a given that he is being traded for some offence. Many feel that he is not a high value piece. He is a decent middle of the rotation guy who if not traded will almost certainly be given a qualifying offer and if he turns it down will net the Yankees a first round pick so the Yankees will not give him away. We will talk about trade possibilities in another piece this evening.
5. David Phelps 6-5 5.01 has pitched better than his era suggests. He has great control and excellent mechanics but his lack of velocity requires him to have great control. When he doesn’t he might as well be throwing batting practice. I like him as a middle reliever/spot starter over holding a long term spot in the rotation.
6. Ivan Nova 4-2 3.63 Having a reputation of not being the most consistent pitcher is tough. He should also have the reputation of having the best arm because he does. Nova as much as he makes you want to pull your hair out at times has GREAT STUFF!!! Right now he is On his game. Lately he has been a strike out machine. He has won his last two decisions pitching 17 innings and striking out 18 batters with an ERA of 1.89. Heres to hoping He can carry that over into the second half of the season.
As starting pitching goes the Yankees are ranked 8th overall in ERA. Ok I was a little long winded but I’m working on it. Overall Grade B+