Carl Pavano threw for eight minutes with the rest of the presumed starters and looked good. He seems to be in great shape.
On Wednesday, Joe Torre said Pavano has “sizable” work to do in terms of restoring the faith of his teammates.
Asked about that today, Pavano grimaced. “That’s Joe’s opinion,” he said. He then went on to blame his image problem on the media. Twice, in fact.
Mike Mussina disagreed. Speaking slowly and with deliberation, he eviscerated Pavano for about 10 minutes.
“It’s a situation that he needs to show a lot of people that he wants to go out there and pitch for us,” Mussina said. “It got to a point where we didn’t want to hear about it or talk about it. I’ve never had a situation like that.”
Asked if Pavano should get the benefit of the doubt, Mussina didn’t hesitate.
“No, not yet,” he said.
He later said:
“It didn’t look good from a player’s and a teammate’s standpoint. … As another starting pitcher who has not been 100 percent all of the last two years, I know what it takes to go out there and pitch. … Actions speak louder than words.”
Mussina said other players feel the same way. “Joe the manager seems to feel that way,” he said.
Pavano had already left, so we were unable to get his reaction. But Mussina, who is active as a team leader, is clearly challenging Pavano.
The only solution for the Yankees could be to hope Pavano shows he’s healthy and trade him. St. Louis and Colorado have expressed interest in the past. Eat half his remaining contract and be done with him.