The Yankees are carrying 14 relief pitchers these days. But they somehow ran out of good options tonight in the ninth inning.
Joba Chamberlain was resting.
Using Mariano Rivera in a tie game made no sense, especially with the Yankees having the bottom of their order due up in the 10th. I’m sure the usual suspects will say Torre should have used Rivera. But he had thrown 1.1 innings and the night before and was used in three of the first five games of the road trip.
Kyle Farnsworth was out with a stiff neck.
Luis Vizcaino had just pitched the eighth on nine days rest. There was no reason to burn him out with three days at Fenway coming up.
So Joe Torre went with his most experienced right-hander, Chris Britton. Five pitches later, it was over.
The outcome spoiled a brilliant start by Ian Kennedy, who allowed one run on one hit in seven innings. He walked four and struck out seven. In three starts he has a 1.89 ERA.
The 22-year-old didn’t take it too hard.
“Itâ€™s just the way baseball is. You pitch your butt off and sometimes you donâ€™t get a win,â€? he said.
Torre indicated that the Yankees will try and use six starters over their remaining 16 games. There will be a lot of mixing and matching. They have not announced a rotation beyond this weekend.
Tough loss, especially with Boston and Detroit idle. But you’ll take starting a road trip 5-1 every time.