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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Today in The Journal News

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Apr 17, 2008 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

The Yankees and the Red Sox slugged it out last night and the home team emerged standing. Brian Heyman has the story.

LaTroy Hawkins gave up 21. This notebook also updates the catching situation and the Pope’s impending visit to the Stadium

Rick Carpiniello writes that Joba Chamberlain belongs in the bullpen. I couldn’t agree less, but that’s what makes for a good baseball discussion.

————

If you missed it yesterday, check out Sam Borden’s piece on how the athletes of Virginia Tech are carrying on a year after the shootings on campus. It’s a story well-worth reading.

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131 Responses to “Today in The Journal News”

  1. Yeah!!! April 17th, 2008 at 3:00 am

    It wasn’t for this blog I would be going crazy with all this studying.

    Pete, keep it up. Thanx stating your well written point on the whole Letry number thing.

    People so ignorant sometimes gosshhhh.

    Can’t we all get along?

  2. Yeah!!! April 17th, 2008 at 3:01 am

    If**

  3. Andy Hawkins April 17th, 2008 at 3:26 am

    That column is garbage. Didn’t what happened Wednesday show that you DON’T necessarily need Joba in the bullpen? Bruney was throwing smoke, Traber got Ortiz, Hawkins has been really good lately. Add Mariano in, and the bullpen looks fine to me.

    Fine enough, anyway, to put a man with four big-time pitches in the starting rotation.

    Besides, has anyone thought about how unfair it is to Joba that he has to be a setup man? Starters make A LOT more money.

  4. Jimbob April 17th, 2008 at 3:51 am

    If I have seen anything definitive from the Yankees so far this year, it is that their bullpen is very solid (with the exception of Farnsworth). Especially with the emergence of Bruney and the potential of Ohlendorf, Joba can move into the rotation later this year and leave the 8th up to those 2.

    Now if Hughes and Kennedy can get it together, this might just be a championship level team.

  5. Derek - RETIRE 21!!! Moose Is The New Chet Stedman!!! April 17th, 2008 at 4:07 am

    Andy,

    Jobas got four years max to determine if him starting games will earn more money, remember when wright n reyes were makin 390k last year still? Cano was an anomaly, because you cant deny he will succeed. But the point is he has plenty of time to assume both roles…

    Other than that, I absolutely agree, the bullpen looked great, and albaladejo hasnt pitched yet, and they may be able to keep it up till joba gets back.

    Im hoping Hughes really bares down in Baltimore, we need him and he has to just hit spots.

  6. Kevin April 17th, 2008 at 5:39 am

    You know, I’m sure I don’t need to make this point to Pete, since I agree with him. And I’m sure others have said this, but seriously, here’s an easy math problem:

    Let’s say Joba is a 3.25 ERA guy over a full season.

    Do you want a 3.25 ERA guy pitching 200 innings or 75 in a given year?

    It’s simplistic, and I’m sure there’s people who can expound on this reasoning better than I could, but that’s what it comes down to for me.

    Stopping runs in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th innings is as important as stopping runs in the 9th over the course of a 162-game season.

    Just as an aside, I’ll never quite understand the mythology of the closer role. Closers get put on the pedestal for ‘locking games down’, when most above-average pitchers can get a scoreless inning a lot of the time, and when most elite closers (#42 being an obvious exception) are one or two-year wonders (Gagne, E.).

    I can see making someone a closer if they have one or two plus pitches, but Joba doesn’t fit that description.

  7. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 6:29 am

    Good lord, not the, “Keep Joba in the bullpen” chant again. Ugh…..

    Last night was a perfect night for me. Yankees win, Rangers win, and the bartender working my party last night (who couldn’t stop telling everybody around him he is a “diehard Red Sox fan”), was silent the last 3 hours of the party.

    I don’t know, I may have to file for divorce today. My wife. Wonderful woman, did a VERY poor job choosing the bartender…..

    I kid because I care! lol

    My thoughts:

    1. Star of the game last night? Hawkins. Irony at its best, isn’t it?

    Saw Pete’s addendum to his post on Hawkins. You would think O’Neill, at least at this point, would come out in the guys corner. Nope. Stubborn to the end.

    I not only wouldn’t retire the number (I never thought it should be retired), I’d re-issue it first chance I get. Fans and O’Neill be damned.

    You can’t let mob rule, or an ex-ballplayer incapable of thinking about somebody other than himself dictate your thoughts.

    He lost a lot of respect from people inside and outside the Yankee organization with his actions during this entire fiasco. Its not going to get him what he wants in the end.

    I also think its time to for fans to get off Hawkins back. He had 2 bad outings and has been unhittable since.

    He’s going to be an important piece in the bullpen if we want to see Joba transition to the rotation. After all this other nonsense, he is also fast becoming the guy I am really rooting for this year because he doesn’t deserve the treatment he has gotten thus far from a segment of the fan base.

    2. Bruney. Glad he redeemed himself for a night and I hope I am wrong about him. I still need 20 innings of solid work before I change my mind about him. Doesn’t make me not root for him. I am just cautious when it comes to Bruney and Farnsworth because of their past histories as Yankees.

    Girardi has to use them and he has been on the money about the way he has to use them. I just want to see more before declaring either guy, “fixed”.

    My magic number for setup relief pitchers is 20 innings. Show me 20 inning splits on setup guys and I’m better able to make an informed judgment on their success rate.

    I certainly hope he can change for two simple reasons. One, it makes the team better. Two, it gets Joba to the rotation faster.

    3. They have played 3 games so far this year when the gametime temperature was above 65 degrees. The last 3 games. Its not a coincidence the bats woke up when the weather improved. This team is going to hit. That’s not going to be the issue this season. How they pitch will determine their fate.

    4. Wang has pitched 4 games this year. Great in three, clunker in one. I’ll take those odds everytime. Last night diminishes nothing with him. He’s going to have a big year.

    Overall, they are hanging in there, despite having a SS playing who still isn’t 100%, being without their top 2 catchers, and missing the best setup guy in baseball.

    What Girardi is doing, and this is an upgrade from what we saw last year, is spreading the workload in the ‘pen.

    He’s not overusing guys (except for Ohlendorf because he has become the de facto long man), and that’s going to pay dividends as the season goes on.

    All in all, hard to find fault with a lot of stuff when looking at the big picture.

    They are doing what they need to do to get through this rough patch.

  8. Rebecca--Optimist Prime--Mission 2708 April 17th, 2008 at 6:31 am

    For the record, this is the only time you’ll ever see me post at 6.30 AM.

    I am running on empty.

  9. melancholykorean April 17th, 2008 at 6:50 am

    Gentlemen and ladies,

    In the immortal words of that great man, that wonderful scholar, historian, and thinker, adviser to Presidents, lion in winter, Donald Kagan, my teacher at Yale, who, speaking of a different Game, once said:

    (New York 15, Boston 9)

    “Because God is Just.”

    How sweet the morning coffee tastes, how lovely the sunrise, how cool the city air, when the night before, the Yankees win. At home. Over the Red Sox.

    http://www.melancholykorean.co.....-just.html

  10. Doreen April 17th, 2008 at 7:01 am

    Rebecca -

    Almost done?

    SJ44 -

    You must have had a really good time last night! Great post. (And so lucid after a night of partying!!! :) )

    I was exhausted, so I went to sleep before the game was over. I was hesitant to find out the results, because I had fear of the Yankees having to use Mariano for a third straight game, and, well, this being the Red Sox and all, find that Mo had blown his first save.

    So, I as absolutely thrilled when my husband told me the final score. Not only did they win, but the bullpen calmed down the Boston bats, the Yankees added some insurance and Mo got a night off. Couldnt’ ask for anything more!

    I got a real kick reading the game posts last night. Talk about schizophrenic. :lol: But it was that kind of a game. With Wang starting, whooda thunk it??

    Again, the quotes from LaTroy just make me like the guy more and more. I don’t really understand O’Neill here. At least he threw LaTroy a bone, saying he had no problem with him wearing it — after he’d already given it up, apparently. Well, that’s the end of that one, thank heavens.

  11. Rebecca--Optimist Prime--Mission 2708 April 17th, 2008 at 7:05 am

    Doreen: 8/10. Normally I’ just stay up till it was done but I’ve been so utterly exhausted I went to sleep around three and got up around 6.30 to finish.

    I have till 3.30 PM, so plenty of time, but if I get it done before 10.30 AM it theoretically means I won’t miss Neuro, though my body might revolt anyway. It’s been known to do that.

    Don’t take a full courseload the same semester as your thesis. I am learning this the hard way.

  12. Rebecca--Optimist Prime--Mission 2708 April 17th, 2008 at 7:07 am

    This is cool: “Extra bases: The Yankees’ 9-7 start is their best since 2003 when they got off to a 13-3 beginning. …”

  13. Dan April 17th, 2008 at 7:11 am

    That whole article about keeping Joba in the pen is so short-sighted. His whole argument is that he needs to be in the ‘pen because we have pitchers on strict pitch and inning counts. That is only for this year really with Hughes and Kennedy. Next season, Kennedy should be able to pitch over 200 innings, and Hughes close to 200.

    If they decide to switch Joba back to the rotation, he could get to around 150 this year, thus allowing him to go 180 next year. However, if they keep him in the pen all season, he’ll be more likely to only get around 80-90 innings. I just don’t understand that logic, or lack thereof, for keeping a stud with 3 plus pitches (fastball, curve, slider, all ranked best in Yankees farm by Baseball America) and a developing slider.

  14. pat April 17th, 2008 at 7:13 am

    “LaTroy Hawkins gave up 21.”

    As long as the “21″ he gave up aren’t hits or run, it’s time to start supporting LaTroy.

  15. Don Vito A. Bellamo April 17th, 2008 at 7:26 am

    Joba as our #3 Starter…Alby in the Pen….this is going to be a super fine year, ALL. Enjoy the ride and GOOD MORNING to YA ! ;-)

  16. melancholykorean April 17th, 2008 at 7:26 am

    agree re Hawk and 21.

    I know all the arguments and agree with them to some extent, so don’t yell at me, but I just DO love seeing Joba come out of the pen. That guy is a beast.

    baseball can be so beautiful, non?

  17. Yanksrule57 April 17th, 2008 at 7:26 am

    I’ve seen several examples already this year of how differently Girardi handles pitchers. Torre IMO would have burned through at least one or two more pitchers last night.
    Not a knock on Mr. T, but I like the way Girardi lets his pitchers fight out of trouble.

    I liken this to one of the all-time greats in another sport. Phil Jackson famously doesn’t call time-outs when his team is in trouble like most coaches. His feeling is that it helps them deal with adversity better. Well he has 9 rings that say he is right.

    I think Girardi is taking the same view with his pitchers saying “The hook isn’t coming so you better find a way out of this mess.”

  18. Doreen April 17th, 2008 at 7:41 am

    Rebecca -

    Most of life’s lessons are learned “the hard way!”

    I just finished reading Carpiello’s article regarding Joba in the pen. It is a short-sighted view and again, the comparison to Papelbon is misleading. Joba offers more as a starter than Papelbon could have. Also any comparisons to Mariano are false – Mariano did not have the arsenal that Joba had in order to start.

    Will they be able to find another Mo? No, probably not. But no one else has either. He’s one of a kind. Broke the mold. But does that mean they’ll never have an effective closer ever again? I doubt it. Wetteland was pretty good before Mo, for one. It will all settle itself out. Mariano has spoiled us for perfection, but I’ll take slightly less than perfect but highly effective, with Joba in the rotation, thank you very much.

  19. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 7:51 am

    There is no question Girardi has less of a panic button with his pitchers than Torre did the last 4 years of his reign.

    You know, its funny but, you can really see the difference in the way Torre managed the team Post-2004 meltdown.

    If you look at how he managed from 1996 (when he was about as aggressive in his decisionmaking as any manager in the game) through Game 3 of the 2004 season, it was completely different than how he managed from 2005-2007 in many ways.

    Most notably, how aggressive he was in the style of play of the team.

    He will never admit it but, I think the combination of Zimmer leaving and blowing that 3-0 lead to the Red Sox changed the way he managed.

    He let a lot more stuff (like poor conditioning, game prep early in the season from his players) fester. Eventually, too many guys took advantage of that and they didn’t hold up their end of the bargain.

    He got really rigid re: playing the vets over the young guys. Especially when it came to sitting Melky (they don’t make the playoffs without Melky) for Sheffield and Matsui in 2006.

    Batting Arod 8th in the biggest game of the year in 2006? Ugh, a brutally bad decision in so many ways. Very, very un-Torre like.

    I still subscribe to the theory that after 10 years, I don’t care who it is, you burn out when you are a manager in one place.

    That’s why I’m not mad at Torre in the slightest.

    He had a great run here but it had to end. It was time for both parties.

    Hopefully, when he gains some perspective, he will come back and take the honors he richly deserves (number retirement, Monument Park, etc) because he has earned them.

    That said, Joe Girardi is the best choice to manage this team in the present stage of development its in.

    He will make mistakes but in the end, he will succeed because he’s too good at this job not to succeed.

  20. Bronxbyte April 17th, 2008 at 7:57 am

    The key to tonight’s game is getting to Beckett early and often.
    It renders Papelbon of no use and in the process burns out Boston’s middle relief.
    Six + quality innings from Mussina is acceptable with Albaladejo and Mo closing it out.

  21. Rebecca--Optimist Prime--Mission 2708 April 17th, 2008 at 7:58 am

    Like I said, let’s wait till Memorial Day before you start bashing Girardi.

    He’s going to make mistakes. Some are going to be very painful.

    If there’s an October at the end of it, I’m okay with it. I don’t need the Yankees to go 162-0 to make me happy.

  22. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 8:02 am

    Here’s where the comparisons between Joba and Papelbon break down:

    1. Joba is a setup guy. Papelbon is a closer. Big difference. Joba will have to be a setup guy (if he stays in the bullpen) for THREE more years because that’s the length of Mariano’s contract. Has Mariano showed any signs of slowing down? No.

    And, before we even start going down the road, no, Mariano isn’t moving to a setup role for Joba to close.

    You don’t waste an arm like Joba’s for 3 years. Also, what guarantee do you have Joba CAN close?

    There is no greater distance between two innings than the 8th and 9th inning. Think about this. If you keep Joba in the bullpen for 3 more years, you still don’t know if he can be a successful closer. Thinking he will and KNOWING he will are two different animals.

    2. Papelbon is in the bullpen for primarily for health reasons. Fact is, his shoulder can’t hold up for 160-200 innings per year. Its why Tito is so careful with him now. Joba has no such health concerns.

    3. Papelbon can throw 2 pitches for strikes: fastball and split. He’s working on a slider but, that’s a work in progress. His fastball is his only plus pitch. Like Mariano, he can be succesful with one plus pitch because its a great pitch, he can locate it at any time, and he doesn’t see hitters more than once in a lineup.

    Joba has THREE plus pitches. Already, he has the best fastball/slider combo in the game. His fastball is already better than Papelbon’s. His slider is even better and the combination of the two pitches are deadly. His curveball, which I saw a lot of last year in his minor league starts, is also a plus pitch. He’s working on a changeup. By mid-season, it will not be a plus pitch but, it will be good enough to use 4-8 times in games.

    There isn’t a guy pitching in ANY bullpen in the game with 3 plus pitches and fourth not far behind.

    Its really a no brainer for him be in the rotation. When he does transition to the rotation, he will be a #1 starter.

    In fact, had Mark Melancon not had TJ Surgery, or Kyle Farnsworth proved to be a dependable 8th inning guy, Joba would be in the rotation right now.

    The only people who believe otherwise are folks who either don’t understand the game or are in a panic over, “who will pitch the 8th inning”.

  23. David L April 17th, 2008 at 8:09 am

    I’m probably missing something obvious here, but why didn’t Ohlendorf get the W last night? I thought he was the pitcher of record when they took the lead and I thought the official scorer only had discretion in the case that the starter left the game with a lead before completing 5 innings.

    Thanks.

  24. Dee April 17th, 2008 at 8:14 am

    I have never chimed here once on this Joba:rotation or bullpen debate because I’ve always thought it was a stupid question. But for the first and last time: YES, Joba belongs to the rotation!

    Reasons? Simple:
    1. He is young and will get even better
    2. He has more than one or two great pitches
    3. He was always a starter before he joined the Yanks and is used to pitching long innings

    People who compare him to Mo are missing two very obvious points:
    1. Mo doesn’t have multiple pitches that are all as fierce as his cutter
    2. Mo used to be a starter and was mediocre

    OK, I’m not chiming on this in ever again. Like I said, this is silly.

  25. Doreen April 17th, 2008 at 8:17 am

    Actually all that really matters is that the Yankees want Joba to be a starter. All the rest is “sound and fury, signifying nothing.” Makes for good fodder for debate, though.

  26. Rishi April 17th, 2008 at 8:20 am

    David L – the official scorer decided Hawkins should be the winning pitcher…(s)he can do that.

  27. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 8:28 am

    Why was this left out of Paulie’s quote originally? Doesn’t make him look too bad now.

    “What can I say? The fans have always been unbelievable to me there,” O’Neill told The Associated Press from his home in Ohio. “I don’t really know how to explain it. It makes you feel good that the fans still think of you as wearing that number. … Obviously, I have nothing against LaTroy for wearing that number.”

  28. TKinDC April 17th, 2008 at 8:31 am

    The aspect of this decision that people don’t often deal with is that an assessment has to be made of the entire team and what will lead to a championship this year. Right now the rotation has 5 starters who have all performed credibly. As long as this is true and no one gets injured, I don’t think a change is going to be made.

    It is a little like people who get irritated that Jeter (in their minds anyway) is not as good a SS as A-Rod. A-Rod was better defensively when he played SS in Seattle and Texas, he may even be capable of playing a better SS today (although he is bigger physically now than he was). But I think the best TEAM the yankees can put on the field has Jeter at SS and A-Rod at 3B.

    I understand that 200 innings is more important than 75. I understand that Joba can be a great starter. If (God forbid) a starter goes down for 2 months or a tendon pops I will be right along with everyone else pushing for Joba to the rotation. But given his innings limitations and the makeup of the entire team I think the current arrangement makes sense.

    Maybe at the all-star break, it will be clear that Moose is cooked or that IPK can’t perform at this level. We can revisit it then. For now, I think Joba in the pen gives us the best chance to win the series this year.

  29. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 8:35 am

    Yanksrule57

    Agreed. I could picture last year 9th inning 1 out 2 on, Mo getting back up to get in the game. Joe let Brian fight through it, sometimes it works (last night) sometimes it doesn’t.

  30. Betsy April 17th, 2008 at 8:36 am

    Jennifer, That last comment from Paulie doesn’t do anything for me. Ok – so he doesn’t have anything against LaTroy – he shouldn’t have anything against him. He’s missing the point – whether or not he has a problem with LaTroy is not the issue. The issue is that the fans bullied the poor guy (two actually, with Ensberg) into giving up a # that meant a lot to him. The point is, Paul should have been a man and stood up for a current Yankee instead of tacitly approving of the fans’ behavior. Even if the fans wouldn’t have listened, at least Paul would have made the attempt to calm things down. Instead, no matter what, he just looks petty……I’m glad personally for Hawk that he pitched great last night.

    SJ44, I hope you’re right about Paul losing some respect in the organization. I’m very annoyed with him now.

  31. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 8:39 am

    I also can’t stand hearing people say, keep Joba in the pen this year and move him to the rotation next year. UM HELLO?!! In the pen he’d throw 70 some innings, how do you expect a guy to go from 70 innings to 180? YOu can’t. ANd you can’t have a guy int he starting rotation only throwing 100 innings! Just not possible. The way they have it mapped out is the best. Betweent he pen and rotation he’d throw 140 innings, than next year he is near 180.

    It is simple math really, but people don’t think ahead.

  32. JMO April 17th, 2008 at 8:43 am

    Hopefully VA Tech students can now utilize their constitutionally guaranteed second amendment rights. The VA Tech “campus gun free zone” created an environment in which the murderer knew that there wasn’t another firearm within at least several hundred yards of his location.

    “Campus gun free zone”…it would be funny if it wasn’t such a massive tragedy for so many families.

  33. gayle April 17th, 2008 at 8:55 am

    Jennifer that one line addition in my opinion doesnt make me feel any better.

    Girardi’s quote is the kind of quote that Paul should have said ages ago.

    Michael Kay is an idiot as well as once again last night it focused on the number both during theg ame and after the game and almost as an afterthgouht mentioned that the reason he wanted to wear i was to honor Clemente. I understand that O’Neil is hi friend but shut up Michael.

  34. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 8:58 am

    Stupid moron paid the ultimate price, but he could have killed someone else!!

    Police Say Fan Lost Balance Sliding on Handrail

    By ANAHAD O’CONNOR and BEN SHPIGEL
    Published: April 17, 2008
    A 36-year-old man who plunged more than 30 feet to his death as he left Tuesday’s game at Shea Stadium had tried to slide down an escalator handrail and lost his balance, the police said Wednesday.

    The man was identified by the police as Antonio Nararainsami, a father of two from the Cypress Hills section of Brooklyn who was attending the game with his young daughters and at least one cousin.

    With his two daughters behind him, Nararainsami was on a still escalator on the upper level near left field about 10 p.m. when he went over the handrail and fell about four or five stories, landing on an escalator on the loge level, the police said.

  35. Russell NY April 17th, 2008 at 8:58 am

    “Carl’s a 1-2 starter,” O’Connell said. “Those guys don’t grow on trees. Those guys are very rare, 200-inning guys are very rare in this game, and they’re the ones that make the money. And he did it two years in a row, before he got hurt, and I’m sure he’s going to do it again.”

    Unbelievable… go to hell.

  36. eyes of realism April 17th, 2008 at 9:00 am

    Regardless of what Papelbon ever does, he’ll NEVER carry himself with the professionalism that Mariano has throughout his career.
    His mechanics suggest he’ll flame out before he’s 33 years old.

  37. Russell NY April 17th, 2008 at 9:00 am

    jennifer – he must have realized that the Mets are only beating the crappy teams.

  38. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:01 am

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04.....f=baseball
    The pope’s visit has also caused other hassles for the Yankees, who are not allowed to leave their cars in the players’ lot when the team leaves Thursday night. Clubhouse attendants also must clear each player’s locker before the Pope arrives

  39. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:03 am

    Russell NY

    I posted that yesterday. Can you believe his agent is that stupid, or thinks he will find another team that stupid. I would be so ticked if he goes out there next year and even throws 180 innings, although I don’t knnow how he would seeing that he has pitched in what 3-4 years? :lol:

  40. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:05 am

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04.....f=baseball

    The Yankees’ flight touched down at 2:30 a.m. Wednesday. That is normally a time of little traffic at La Guardia Airport, but there was a slight delay in getting off the plane. The pilot informed the Yankees that the Boston Red Sox’ charter was just ahead of theirs on the tarmac.

    :lol: That just stinks!

  41. Clay Buchholz stole my laptop (aka Joe) April 17th, 2008 at 9:07 am

    Is it possible that Paul O’Neill was not that aware of this situation?

  42. Yanksrule57 April 17th, 2008 at 9:09 am

    RussellNY,

    Agreed, but what Pavano himself said in that piece sums his tenure up perfectly; Essentially, he said he had to take his time coming back because he had the rest of his career to worry about, Blah, Blah. Me,Me,Me. That is Pavano in a nutshell.

    I wonder if the Yanks will do psych profiles on free agents in the future? Either Pavano is a tremendous narcissist/egoist or he is delusional.

    Hey Carl, here’s some news for you; You don’t have a career to worry about anymore!

  43. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:12 am

    I think if everything is going okay with the starters that we don’t even let Carl come back. Let him stay in the minors, maybe down at low a. Why let him take a spot from someone more deserving, and why let him showcase himself for other teams. Personally I don’t even think he will be pitching off a mound by Sept. He did have TJ surgery after all and noraml recovery time is a year (?) And well Carl isn’t normal so it will probably be at least a year and a half.

  44. Russell NY April 17th, 2008 at 9:12 am

    Jenn – I wouldn’t be surprised if he went to another ballclub cheap and gave them an outstanding effort. That is just the Yankees’ luck. I don’t buy much into into the “hasn’t pitched” reasoning. Everyone is knocking Duaner Sanchez for being out so long, questioning his competitive edge, but I think he will be fine. The question is whether or not someone has the fortitude to do it. I believe Pavano is a little fairy and has no intimidation factor in NY so I will be glad to see him go.

    eye – “Regardless of what Papelbon ever does, he’ll NEVER carry himself with the professionalism that Mariano has throughout his career.”

    What gave you that impression?! Was it his “intimidating” look that appears more like a goofball taking a dump?

  45. Russell NY April 17th, 2008 at 9:14 am

    “Either Pavano is a tremendous narcissist/egoist or he is delusional.”

    For some reason Pavano reminds me a little bit of Tyson.

  46. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 9:15 am

    “The aspect of this decision that people don’t often deal with is that an assessment has to be made of the entire team and what will lead to a championship this year.”

    That is exactly the wrong way to think. The assessment that must be made is “what decision will give the Yankees the best chance to win the most championships over time”

    Keeping Joba in the pen all year leaves us in EXACTLY THE SAME PLACE next offseason.

  47. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 9:16 am

    “He did have TJ surgery after all”

    He had it last april or may. It’s been almost a year already.

  48. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:18 am

    Personally I don’t think Carl was the same since he got hit in the face by a comebacker. I was at that game and it was scary.

  49. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:18 am

    whozat

    He had it that early? Okay so than I revise my year and a half timeline to 2 years. :lol:

  50. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:20 am

    whozat

    I just found an article dated May 24th and it said he was having it soon. So he didn’t have the surgery to June.

  51. YankeeDiva April 17th, 2008 at 9:25 am

    I’ll admit while I do follow baseball a lot I never thought about how a reliever becomes a reliever just as long as they did their jobs (just like everyone else) with that in mind regarding Joba and the bullpen. Is it normal to have young talented guys like Joba start and remain in the bullpen their entire careers? I was always under the impression that relievers started out as starters and ended up in the bullpen 1) Because of injuries/age to reduce the wear and tear on their bodies or 2) They just didn’t have goods to remain in the starting rotation but had enough to be a middle reliever when teams needed them. I’m not understanding why so many think that Joba should stay in the pen for his career when he’s probably the most talented of the 3 young guys.

    Thoughts on the cold weather SJ44 I think a lot of us noticed that, the when the warmer weather comes so do the bats…..do you think that could be part of our problem with the post season….the temps tend to go back down in Oct.

  52. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 9:26 am

    YankeeDiva

    I am under the same impression too.

  53. mike April 17th, 2008 at 9:26 am

    maybe Hawkins will pitch like he did last night with 22 instead of 21

  54. mike April 17th, 2008 at 9:30 am

    saying papelbon only has one plus pitch I’d beyond dumb. His splitter is plus plus joining his fastball xhich is what makes him great

  55. LathamJoe April 17th, 2008 at 9:31 am

    Count me as one who agrees with Rick Carpiniello about Joba’s role for now. “Joba’s got 3 plus pitches and a fourth that’s close”. Really? After demonstrating that in how many MLB starts? Joba is still a youngsters who’s learning. He’s had a history of health issues as a starter.
    That said, I still think that some day he will make a fine starter – IF he’s not needed as a closer. And don’t tell me that if Mo (God forbid) ever becomes ineffective in the 9th or gets injured – that the Yankees wouldn’t hesitate putting Joba in the closer role.
    Right now Girardi’s goal is to shorten the Game with a lead. Joba can go 2 if needed and get it to Mo. Until someone else demonstrates that ability, that is the best alternative for the NY Yankees.

  56. AeroFANatic April 17th, 2008 at 9:42 am

    I’ve got to think that Shelly, who has been mashing the ball in the minors, will be making his way back to the big club on 4/19-4/20, when his 10 days in the minors are over.

    The timing works out for the club. They wanted to rest Molina for a few days, and Moeller has been a decent replacement.

    So me thinks that Shelly will be called up, and Moeller will be sent down. Gonzalez will stay with the club, and when Betemit comes off the DL (end April) he will be DFA’d, essentially cut.

    Gonzalez has shown he can fill in on a pinch for Cano at 2B, and he can definitly spell Jeter at SS.

    That leaves our bench as :

    Ensberg : 1B, 3B
    Duncan: 1B, OF
    Gonzalez: SS, 2B
    Molina: C

    With Posada and Molina getting back to form, the offense is starting to round out.
    Anyone else’s thoughts?

  57. Dead Horse April 17th, 2008 at 9:48 am

    Please stop beating me. Thank you

  58. V April 17th, 2008 at 9:48 am

    “Count me as one who agrees with Rick Carpiniello about Joba’s role for now. “Joba’s got 3 plus pitches and a fourth that’s close”. Really? After demonstrating that in how many MLB starts? Joba is still a youngsters who’s learning. He’s had a history of health issues as a starter.
    That said, I still think that some day he will make a fine starter – IF he’s not needed as a closer. And don’t tell me that if Mo (God forbid) ever becomes ineffective in the 9th or gets injured – that the Yankees wouldn’t hesitate putting Joba in the closer role.
    Right now Girardi’s goal is to shorten the Game with a lead. Joba can go 2 if needed and get it to Mo. Until someone else demonstrates that ability, that is the best alternative for the NY Yankees.”

    When? When can he be a starter if he’s throwing 70 innings in the bullpen? Will he go from 70 in the bullpen to 180 as a starter? (no).

    Thank goodness the Yankees are smart enough to handle him correctly.

    The dropoff from Mariano Rivera to Joe Borowski is less important than the dropoff from Andy Pettitte to Kei Igawa. I don’t know a clearer way to put it.

    The closer is overrated except for entertainment value. I like Mariano, I do – and he’s an amazing reliever. But how many save situations are there in a given year? How many times do you need a Joba over the course of the year, especially if you have a Kei Igawa starting one of every five starts?

    I actually find it interesting that the two most valuable relievers (in terms of helping their teams win) were setup men last year, and not closers (Heath Bell and Rafael Betancourt).

  59. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 9:49 am

    “Is it normal to have young talented guys like Joba start and remain in the bullpen their entire careers?”

    No. The Yanks broke him in that way because a) they needed to limit his innings last year and b) they had a need in the MLB bullpen. It used to be common to break in young starters as relievers.

    “Really? After demonstrating that in how many MLB starts?”

    One can only demonstrate plus pitches as an MLB starter? How, then, does any up-and-comer EVER convince you he should be in the rotation?

  60. Hugh April 17th, 2008 at 9:50 am

    Im not ready to stop calling him black farnsworth yet, but if he keeps this up, I will have no choice.

  61. V April 17th, 2008 at 9:50 am

    “So me thinks that Shelly will be called up, and Moeller will be sent down. Gonzalez will stay with the club, and when Betemit comes off the DL (end April) he will be DFA’d, essentially cut.”

    I’m not sure Betemit’s coming off the DL anytime soon – something’s wrong with his eyes. A ballplayer who can’t see ain’t all that good.

    Sucks that he can’t have laser eye surgery – it’s done wonders for Jason Kendall.

  62. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 9:50 am

    “I actually find it interesting that the two most valuable relievers (in terms of helping their teams win) were setup men last year, and not closers (Heath Bell and Rafael Betancourt).”

    Is this because they threw more innings? Came in with men on base more often?

  63. Russell NY April 17th, 2008 at 9:53 am

    Aero – “Anyone else’s thoughts?”

    I can’t see the Yankees letting Betemit go that easily. After all, they did give up Proctor for him.

    This is what I’m afraid of: Betemit COULD have some trade value and the Yankees will neglect AG’s ability to help the team in favor of promoting Betemit. They obviously see something in him.

  64. Jeff NJ April 17th, 2008 at 9:54 am

    Peter, please block Hugh’s IP, everything he says is racist or otherwise offensive.

  65. TKinDC April 17th, 2008 at 9:58 am

    whozat:

    “Keeping Joba in the pen all year leaves us in EXACTLY THE SAME PLACE next offseason.”

    Really? Except we might have 27 championships rather than 26. Or are you so psyched about watching Farnsy and Bruney in Fenway in September in the 8th inning?

    The Yankees don’t exist to develop Joba but to compete for WS rings. We don’t know whether Moose will be back next year (probably not) or Andy P. (maybe). But this team has 5 starters now and an all-world back-end of the pen.

    Like I said I’m willing to revisit this mid-year if someone isn’t performing as a starter or in case of injury, but the best configuration now is what we are doing.

  66. Rishi April 17th, 2008 at 9:59 am

    Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera, who both played with O’Neill, sat Hawkins down and convinced him the switch would be a good idea.

    “We were just trying to get the fans off his back,” Rivera told The Post. “I know how the fans will be. They will wait for one moment so they can boo him and we don’t need that. The number will give them the fuel.”

    “I don’t even pay attention,” Hawkins, who would not talk about the number change, said. “I don’t let the fans dictate to me. I don’t. I’ve got to concentrate on getting guys out.”

  67. kunaldo April 17th, 2008 at 10:04 am

    Kevin from wayyy up there, i agree with you about the closer…this is what i posted in the comments on Jayson Stark’s Three Strikes: Rarity Edition blog:

    Why is bringing a closer in for the 6th inning odd? In the proper situations, it should be more common place. The whole “closer” role is a joke anyways, driven by a ridiculous stat(the save). Once the 6th inning rolls around, half of the outs have already been made, so if there’s a situation where the game can be decided(i.e. runners on 2nd and 3rd, 2 outs, Manny Ramirez batting, your 5th starter in), I’d say it’s a pretty good time to bring in your relief ace and stop the damage right there, rather than save him for the 9th inning save that may not happen BECAUSE of what takes place in the 6th. (yes, if there was no Joba, I would have brought Mo in)

    Saves are asinine

  68. wsr April 17th, 2008 at 10:06 am

    but TK, moving Joba to starting role could put us in a position to begin another dynasty run. Or we could keep him in the pen. that’s cool too.

    think pitching in the post season. having our starters be joba, pett, wang, hughes, or ? we’ve got arms that can contribute to the bp. they’ll be ready by mid season.

  69. jennifer April 17th, 2008 at 10:07 am

    Than what do you supposed we do next year when Mike is gone? We need a 5th starter?

    Or are we going to over spend for CC? Who looks like garbage this year?

  70. Joe from Long Island April 17th, 2008 at 10:12 am

    Hi all –

    I just got back from my trip to Italy (I know, you were all wondering where I was). My wife and I had a great time. We had perfect weather to explore Florence and Rome, and saw a lot. Also ate and drank a lot. And spent. The conversion from dollars to euros is a killer.

    For better or worse, the Internet there is slower and more erratic than what we have here. But I was able to keep up with the Yanks. We were able to get British satellite TV, which broadcast the NASN sports network, and so I was able to get the Yanks in Boston, and saw Wang’s masterpiece against the Red Sox.

    I find it incredible that some people were panicking over the relatively slow start. For Pete’s sake, it was wet and frigid for most of the month so far. And to base your perceptions on just a couple of games? Come on. Hey, Sabathia got clobbered yesterday, and has yet to get a win. Does that make him trash? Anybody want to pass on him next offseason because of it?

    The Yanks won last night in a slugfest (I fell asleep in the 7th, as it was about 4 AM Rome time), and we play them again tonight. (By the way, Beckett has a 6 ERA. Is anyone writing him off based on that?) Let’s root for Moose and the team tonight, and not get caught up in the lunatic fringe.

  71. Hugh April 17th, 2008 at 10:12 am

    CC Sabathia is going to be fine, he is still throwing smoke, just not locating. Id love to have him next year

  72. CB April 17th, 2008 at 10:13 am

    “Really? Except we might have 27 championships rather than 26. Or are you so psyched about watching Farnsy and Bruney in Fenway in September in the 8th inning?”

    The operative word in this sentence is might.

    There are absolutely no guarantees.

    And as I recall – the Yankees had Joba in the pen last year and they didn’t win the world series.

    Are you going to tell me that last year in the playoffs the Yankees were better off with Joba in the pen than starting?

    Joba threw 3 innings in the post season last year – three.

    The yankees lost to Cleveland last year because their STARTING pitching was not good enough.

    The Yankees best chance of winning the world series is to have Joba starting.

    If Joba throws 2 games in a playoff series the yankees have a tremendous chance of winning both those games.

  73. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 10:16 am

    “mike April 17th, 2008 at 9:30 am

    saying papelbon only has one plus pitch I’d beyond dumb. His splitter is plus plus joining his fastball xhich is what makes him great”

    you said it mike “I’d beyond dumb”

    Papelbon’s splitter is good but not great. Because his fastball is so great, it sets up the splitter… Not saying that’s a bad thing, just the way it is. Buchholz’s change is so good, that it makes his fastball, which isnt great, much more effective.

  74. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 10:20 am

    CB is right.

    And what I don’t understand is the reluctance to even ATTEMPT Joba as a starter.

    Even the Sox had planned to make Papelbon a starter, AFTER he showed success in the bullpen. As SJ stated, due to health concerns, he remained in the pen.

    We currently have no reason to believe that Joba will fail as a starter. Everything we’ve seen leads us to believe that he will be really good in whatever role he’s in.

    Why are people against seeing what Joba could do as a starter? If he has #1 stuff and succeeds as such, then what is the argument?

  75. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 10:27 am

    “Why are people against seeing what Joba could do as a starter?”

    Because they’ve seen him dominate as a reliever. They didn’t see him dominate as a starter in the minors. Which he did. His peripherals, amazing. His results, amazing. Every indicator that we have indicates that every attempt should be made to develop him as a starter long-term. With him, Wang and Hughes atop the rotation, this team could have a great front three for years.

  76. Brandon (supporting the new movement "Alex being Alex") April 17th, 2008 at 10:28 am

    it’s not only due to health concerns, Papelbon prior to being in the Red Sox minor league system was never a SP, the huge chunk of his pre minor years was as a closer/mid-relief guy, Red Sox management forced him to be a SP that’s a huge reason why it never worked out which is being over looked.

  77. Jeff NJ April 17th, 2008 at 10:29 am

    I can’t believe all the talk is about Joba today. Any notice, he hasn’t been with the team for 3 days. Can we talk about something relevant, like the standings (1st place) or the offensive outburst, or A Rod’s move up the all time HR list, or Jeter’s jump starting the team, or backup catcher contributions, or bullpen concerns for tonight with Moose pitching, or Youklis’s injury, or Girardi’s game management?

  78. TKinDC April 17th, 2008 at 10:32 am

    CB & Boston Dave:

    Who are you taking out of the rotation?

    That is the point I am trying to make. Moving Joba to the rotation doesn’t just impact him, it impacts the pen and the rotation.

    “The operative word in this sentence is might.

    There are absolutely no guarantees.”

    No kidding – but that could be said for any scenario. I am not saying Joba should set up or close for the rest of his career as a Yankee, I am talking about the team as it is made up now.

    You show me that Alan Horne or Melancon or another minor-leaguer can do what Joba is doing now then I am ready to pack Moose’s bags and send him back to Baltimore. It just isn’t clear to me that this is the case.

  79. Hugh April 17th, 2008 at 10:32 am

    relief pitchers are nothing but failed starting pitchers…joba has yet to fail as a starter….no pitcher starts out as a relief pitcher.

  80. jrealty (formerly Jesse) April 17th, 2008 at 10:32 am

    Pitching and defense wins more games over the long haul along with an adequate offense than any other formula.

    The pitching is looking much better overall than last year and can only get better as the year goes on and the younger arms mature.

    It’s the defense that still needs tweaking which affects the offense as well.

    Too many DH’s with the defense suffering as a result.

    5 DH’s (Damon, Matsui, Giambi, Duncan, Posada) is at least 2 or 3 too many. Hopefully, Posada gets back behind the plate as a catcher for the majority of games but if his arm/age don’t allow it??? Duncan appears to be a player without a defensive position. I think we know the story with the other three.

    IMO Matsui is the everyday DH and the other two are expendable. Most likely neither one is in the plans for this team next year. Might as well get what you can for them now. Both of them need at bats to be as productive as they can be but the log jam at DH doesn’t allow that.

    Every time you give up a run with Matsui in left and Giambi at 1st thats two more runs your offense has to score to win.

  81. CB April 17th, 2008 at 10:35 am

    If you say that we don’t know whether Joba could be a starter because we haven’t seen him do it at the major league level makes no sense.

    It that is the case then no minor league pitcher should ever be given a chance to start.

    They should all be put in the pen, check their performance, and take it from there.

    Joba Chamberlain was Baseball America’s #1 pitching prospect this year.

    No pitcher who has been a #1 prospect has ever wound up in the bull pen unless he had a serious arm injury (Kerry Woods – even that took years of them fighting to keep him in the rotation).

    Joba is far more ready to step into the rotation than Justin Verlander was in 2004 when the tigers put him in their rotation.

    Who was the tiger’s closer at that time – Todd Jones.

    Think about that – Todd Jones. He is a mediocre closer at best.

    Verlander had no minor league experience to speak of – why didn’t the Tigers put Verlander into the closer’s role.

    He would have been a huge up grade over Jones.

    But the primary reason the Tigers made it to the post season that year was because Verlander joined the rotation and anchored their staff.

  82. keith April 17th, 2008 at 10:38 am

    For the 1000th time, Johnny Damon is NOT a DH. He plays above average to very good left field defense and does not provide the offensive production necessary out of a DH spot. Posada is a catcher, he’s missed a week and a half now he’s automatically a DH? You’re a retard.

  83. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 10:39 am

    TKinDC,

    I dont know that anybody in baseball can do what Joba is doing, but that’s not the debate. Alan Horne won’t compare. Nor Melancon. Having arguably one of the best 5-10 pitchers in all of baseball as your setup guy is a luxury – and as we’re discussing, it may be lunacy.

    Where does Joba add the most value, and as was previously said, give the Yanks the best odds to win as many championships as possible over time?

    If the answer to that question is to be the 8th inning guy, then he should stay there. I don’t know how that can be known without even seeing him as a starter.

  84. Global Warming April 17th, 2008 at 10:41 am

    It is much easier to find a closer than a top notch closer.

    I’m talking to you Todd Jones and Joe Borowski.

    We have Mo for 2 more years, Joba will be a starter and we will sign a top tier closer.

  85. Global Warming April 17th, 2008 at 10:41 am

    starter*

  86. Kat April 17th, 2008 at 10:42 am

    Jeff NJ – I completely agree!! What are our bullpen options tonight? Farnsworth and Mo? Anyone else? I am really nervous about that, with Moose pitching. I am confident he can go 5-6 innings and put us in a position to win, especially if the bats stay hot.

    I am going to the game tonight so I really want to see a win!

  87. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 10:43 am

    “Who are you taking out of the rotation?”

    I’ll tell you when the time comes. Perhaps Hughes will have a “tired shoulder” so he goes on the DL to keep innings down. Maybe Kennedy has been sucking. Maybe Moose actually has his yearly groin tweak around then. This isn’t a decision that needs to be made for MONTHS. We have no idea who will be banging on the door from AAA at that point. We have no idea what will have happened in the MLB rotation at that point.

    All we know is that a dominant starter makes the Yankees better now AND in the long term. Joba has the talent that could make him that guy. It’s ludicrous not to figure out a way to get him in that role and see what he can do.

    As for setup…they have stockpiled strike-throwers and hard-throwers in AAA. They have some guys with superlative stuff on the mend from injury. They have a starter with very good stuff in AAA. They have a promising arm in the MLB pen right now (Ross). Out of that group, there are good odds that SOMEONE will step up. That’s how the Padres have built the best bullpen in baseball. It’ll probably work for the Yankees too.

  88. CB April 17th, 2008 at 10:44 am

    “Who are you taking out of the rotation?”

    Mike Mussina. Ian Kennedy if he’s not pitching well.

    Joba will be an enormous upgrade from even the new and improved Mussina we are seeing (and seeing for now – by summer who knows).

    “You show me that Alan Horne or Melancon or another minor-leaguer can do what Joba is doing now then I am ready to pack Moose’s bags”

    This is the wrong criteria to use in deciding whether to move Joba from the pen.

    Let’s be clear about something – Joba is one of the 5 most talented pitchers in baseball. He has the best fastball in baseball and the best slider.

    So if you’re criteria are for his replacement to do “what Joba is doing now” you are setting an impossibly high standard. The yankees’ would have to get Felix Hernandez from the Mariners and then stick him in the set up role in order to find a replacement who can do what Joba is “doing now.”

    No player they can replace him with will ever approach doing what joba is doing now because there are very, very few humans on the planet who have Joba’s talent.

    The reasonable criteria is to find someone who is capable to doing a good job setting up Mariano. That person needs to only be a solid, above average set up guy.

    That’s it. And if given the chance one of the guys they have right now – whether it’s Ohlendorf, Horne, Patterson, Bruney, Hawkins, etc. one of those guys will be able to do an adequate job in that role.

    But none of those guys can do what Joba could do in the rotation. Not even close.

  89. mel April 17th, 2008 at 10:45 am

    If you polled the GMs/Managers of other AL contenders whether Joba should start or relieve, smart money would say they’d rather see him in the bullpen. For one reason only, to avoid potentially seeing him 2x in a postseason series, as SJ44 said.

    The right thing to do is the opposite of what your competitors would want you to do. What do they fear most? Domination by a 22 year old kid. haha.

  90. whozat April 17th, 2008 at 10:46 am

    “What are our bullpen options tonight? Farnsworth and Mo? Anyone else? I am really nervous about that, with Moose pitching.”

    And Albaladejo. I figure he can eat a few innings. And Traber, of course.

    I really want them to get Ollie some higher leverage innings. It kind of sucks that he’s the de-facto long man…I think he has much more potential than that.

  91. jason April 17th, 2008 at 10:46 am

    Joba is a starter PERIOD.
    He is not a middle to back end of the rotation, he is a potential ace. He has the stuff of Beckett, Verlander, King Felix etc.
    He has the potential with Wang to be the best 1-2 in the game for years. They have the potential with Hughes, Kennedy, Horne, Garcia, Brackman etc to have the best rotation in the league for years.
    This will be the year of the relief pithcer call-up. Last year the starters were integrated this year will be the relievers. You have Cox, Melancon, Sanchez, Horne, Kontos, McCutcheon, Robertson, Veras, Britton, Ramirez as all possibilities for the big league club. Bruney may turn it around, Hawkins has pitched very well, ohlendorf (last night notwithstanding) will mature. Heck even Farnsworth said he figured out he cannot think – this will help immensely. By the playoffs someone will emerge, a starter will be in the bullpen anyway, something will shake out.
    If things progress as they should a rotation of Wang, Pettite, Joba, Hughes in a short series can be devastating in terms of quality, different types of pitcher etc.
    To me there is no question.

  92. Will April 17th, 2008 at 10:47 am

    Did anyone catch O’Neill on the Boomer and Carton show a little while ago? I caught the beginning and they flat out asked him if he was upset about Hawkins wearing his number and if he would rather him not wear it and he totally diverted to the same response about how fans in NY are great. I didn’t catch the entire thing but I’ve lost a lot of respect for Paulie at this point. He is not being a stand up guy about the situation and is probably annoying some people throughout the organization with his actions. Maybe he redeemed himself later in the interview but I had to run so I didn’t catch it.

  93. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 10:48 am

    TKinDC,

    adding Joba to the rotation gives them options. I won’t be the one making that decision but they could move Hughes, Kennedy, or Mussina out of the rotation or come up with an alternative.

    But a front 3 of Wang, Joba, Pettitte will be one of the best in the league. Worrying about who to remove isn’t a huge deal.

  94. ANSKY April 17th, 2008 at 10:50 am

    If Joba moves to the rotation in the 2nd half and Melancon turns out to be good enough in the bullpen, it will end the Joba in the ‘pen argument.

    When Joba can be throwing 96-98 into the 7th or 8th every 5 days, the bullpen will be rested more for the 8th or 9th, and the other days when Moose (a 5-6 inning pitcher) or Kennedy/Hughes (innings limits) pitch, or when someone has a meltdown or injury which happens from time to time.

    In recent years the team got into the bullpen in the 5th or 6th too often so the bullpen tanked, and (in last year’s case) it became necessary to use Joba (a starter) in the bullpen. Think about it … to a degree, moving Joba to the rotation (and inserting Melancon in the ‘pen) kind of reduces the need for Joba to be in the ‘pen.

    Of course Hawkins just pitching to the level of his ability, limiting Farnsworth’s use to 3 innings a week (4 MAX), not turning Ohlendorf into the new Scott Proctor (by toasting him) and Bruney showing some reliability would help too.

  95. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 10:52 am

    Will,

    I feel the same way. I have lost some respect for O’Neill as well. If even now, at the very least having seen this unfold, he can’t say it’s a shame that Hawkins was booed or how this all went down, it definitely taints my opinion of him.

    anybody feel like starting a new topic of discussion? Predictions for tonight?

  96. CB April 17th, 2008 at 10:53 am

    “I really want them to get Ollie some higher leverage innings. It kind of sucks that he’s the de-facto long man…”

    This is a major problem with the Way Ohlendorf has been used and it’s becoming a little bit of a viscious cycle for him.

    First off – since he’s gone to the pen he’s been exclusively used as a one inning guy.

    In spring training – he only threw one inning.

    And then, without even being stretched out, he’s suddenly expected to be a long reliever?

    I don’t see how that works, but they were desperate i guess. No contingency plan for what to do if Karstens/ Rasner stunk (at minimum they should have started stretching out ohlendorf or albaladejo when the other 2 were doing poorly).

    Ohlendorf has gone from a set up man in the minors to a work horse in the majors.

    He has thrown more innings than any other yankee reliever.

    On Sunday he threw 3 full innings – 50 pitches – against the Sox – one of the best line ups in the game.

    And then Girardi went back to him again last night after only 2 days off.

    After throwing 3 innings/ 50 pitches 2 days rest is not enough.

    And you saw the effects of that last night – ohlendorf usually has good control – but as he the pitches piled on this control vanished. That’s often the first sign of a pitcher being tired (control goes before velocity).

    They have to get him out of this long man role and back into a short man role.

    I’d like them to keep Albaladejo and use him in that long man role, give Ross some rest and then bring him back into the short man role.

  97. Kat April 17th, 2008 at 10:54 am

    Whozat, I forgot about Alba. That makes me feel a little bit better.

    I agree about Ohlendorf. I’d like to see what he can do in a high stakes situation.

  98. jason April 17th, 2008 at 10:55 am

    Look what happened to the red Sox bullpen yesterday. This is virtually the same as the “Vaunted Red Sox bullpen of 2007). Difference, so far this year not one Red Sox starter has made it past the seventh inning. When under duress, the best bullpen will crumble. These are relievers, because 95% couldn’t crack it as a starter.
    If the Yankees starters solidify, the bullpen will be better just by the default of throwing less innings, and Girardi spreading those innings around much more effectively than Torre.
    Also, you just don’t know what will happen over the course of a season. I heard rumors that Brian Fuentes might become available. The Yankees will have several spare parts on the ML roster and some very appealing youngsters, maybe he becomes the 8th inning man after the all star break.
    You just don’t put a potential top 10 pitcher in all of baseball as your eight inning guy (despite being the best eight inning guy in baseball).

  99. jashell2000 April 17th, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Hawkins performance last night can not be underestimated at all. He along with several others have to be able to perform consistantly while Joba get’s his shot in the rotation this year.

    The more I think about it, the more I don’t agree with either Joba in the pen OR in the rotation. Reason being is I don’t have enough information to be conviced yet. I really wish folks would stop cementing this guy as “our Santana” or “our next Mo”. Yes he has been lights out in the pen (for a short time), but he could also be lights out in the rotation too. And for me, if I had to choose between having “Santana” or “Mo” as hard a decision as that is I would have to go with taking a “Santana”. You can absolutely argue that without Mo, the Yanks don’t have as many rings during that strech as they do.

    Bottom line is let it play out man. I will say this though, if Joba is pedestrian as a starter you better believe I will be clamoring for the Pen. Because if I can’t have the next Santana, I absolutely want “the next Mo”. The championships say so.

  100. saucY April 17th, 2008 at 10:58 am

    the journal news seems like a great paper, but everything that Carpiniello guy writes just makes him seem dumb. He really takes your paper down a notch.

  101. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 11:02 am

    I thought Carpiniello’s article was pretty good, I just disagree with his opinion.

    I wouldn’t call him dumb, IMO.

  102. gargoyle April 17th, 2008 at 11:04 am

    In terms of Joba starting (and I also want to see him start) I believe the Yankees are hoping/thinking that someone from the minors will emerge as a viable option for a major league bullpen spot (as Joba did last season) later this season, freeing up Joba to be moved to the rotation.

    The construction of the BP is always a work in progress and the BP we see in Sept/Oct will likely be very different from the one we see now.

    I think we have a much better ‘pen than Boston does right now.

  103. CB April 17th, 2008 at 11:05 am

    “And for me, if I had to choose between having “Santana” or “Mo” as hard a decision as that is I would have to go with taking a “Santana”. You can absolutely argue that without Mo,”

    The comparison between Joba and Mo is misguided. The chances of joba being the next Mo are very, very , very unlikely.

    It’s unlikely not because of talent or ability but because of endurance over time.

    When people compare Joba to Mo they aren’t fully realizing what a freakish outlier Mo is. There has never been a closer like him – ever. No Trevor Hoffman, not Bruce Sutter, not Eck.

    The primary thing that moves Mo above everyone else isn’t even his talent at his peak performance.

    You could argue that the runs Eckersley had or Gagne were comparable to Mo.

    What makes Mo heads and shoulders above everyone else is his longevity – 14 years at peak performance.

    That’s just absurd. It makes him a complete outlier.

    Relief pitchers have a pretty good track record for lasting 4-7 years and then flaming out really badly.

    Joba is often compared to Bobby Jenks of the White Sox. Jenks used to throw 98-100. Then last year all of a sudden for no explainable reason he was throwing 92-94.

    Do you really want to put Joba at risk for having a 5 year career in pinstripes?

  104. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 11:06 am

    lots of teams have major bullpen problems

    none of them are considering taking their best starter and converting them to the pen as a solution

  105. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 11:07 am

    Papelbon’s split isn’t a plus pitch. Its “beyond dumb” to think it is.

    No scout in the game will call it a plus pitch.

    Joba, on the other hand, already has 3 plus pitches.

    That’s why he will be in the rotation and not the bullpen.

  106. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 11:11 am

    Joba isn’t going to be the next Mo. There isn’t going to be another Mo.

    Its like predicting who is going to be the next Jordan.

    Unique special athletes, like Jordan and Mo, are impossible to duplicate.

  107. Brian from PA April 17th, 2008 at 11:12 am

    i don’t even understand why anyone would want to keep Joba in the pen. Yeah it makes the late game situations a lot easier, but you can find any guy or combination of guys that can do that effectively as well. it’s not a roll that needs to be so utterly dominant like it is with Joba, it just needs to be effective consistently. We need starters to be able to be dominant. I’m sure Josh Beckett, Brandon Webb, Jake Peavy and Johan Santana would all make great 8th inning guys too but they’re not, because their abilities are too valuable to waste on one inning every couple of days. Joba needs to start, no question about it my mind.

  108. CB April 17th, 2008 at 11:13 am

    “I think we have a much better ‘pen than Boston does right now.”

    The main advantage the yankees have over boston is better depth and in many ways the starting rotation.

    The red sox have beckett and then 4 guys who are not going to go deep into games. Four 5-6 inning pitchers.

    This is causing tremendous stress on their bull pen already. Their innings are piling up and boston doesn’t have the depth of arms to absorb it.

    Since Mike Timlin came back earlier this week he’s made 4 appearances. He’s 41.

    The yankees have a similar problem but at least they have 2 starters who will go deep in games with Wang and Pettite. And Mussina over time is going to be better than Wakefield in terms of providing innings.

    And as those innings pile up the yankees can turn to their depth of arms to help them out – say Hawkins gets tired or gets a sore shoulder. They have options to help form the minors.

    Besides Papelbon and Okajima the sox best reliever this season has been Aardsma. It’s his first time in the pen. He gets tired – they have very limited options.

  109. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 11:16 am

    One last thing and I am done with this subject.

    Why do we have to know who Joba’s replacement in the ‘pen will be today?

    On April 17, 2007, NOBODY in mainstream baseball media in NY knew of Joba Chamberlain.

    Only fans who are really into the team knew about him. But, even they didn’t yet see him as a viable option to the Yankees this early in his development.

    My point is that if you have enough arms in your organization, you will be able to find guys to work in your bullpen.

    #1 starter arms like Joba’s are VERY rare in organizations.

    When you have one, you put him where he belongs. In the rotation.

  110. PittsburghYankeeFan April 17th, 2008 at 11:20 am

    Isn’t it April?

    Reading the game thread last night, I couldn’t figure out whether this was game 7 of the WS or not.

    I really like Girardi. For the past 3-4 games, when asked by the media about certain supposedly “life or death” situations for the Yankees (like the 5 run bottom of the 8th against the Rays a few days ago) he states “that’s baseball, things are going to happen in 162 games.”

    The cool thing…he has the players saying exactly the same thing. Listen to LaTroy Hawkins last night. Same thing with Brian Bruney. I think he has the team somewhat mellowed out.

    If only he could do the same for us fans…

  111. gargoyle April 17th, 2008 at 11:21 am

    CB

    I give Matsuzaka more credit than you do. He’s uneven but there are times when he’s very good.

    IMO Papelbon has shoulder issues that the RS are quietly very concerned about. I heard Francona speaking about him (specifically his outing on Saturday which was adimittedly pretty taxing) and it was almost as if he knew that he was ailing or fragile. Papelbon has thrown less innings and appearances than Mo in the last two seasons. Pretty odd that they are babying a guy who really should be in his physical prime.

  112. LathamJoe April 17th, 2008 at 11:23 am

    “relief pitchers are nothing but failed starting pitchers…joba has yet to fail as a starter….no pitcher starts out as a relief pitcher.”

    That’s an absurd statement. Several MLB teams have used their young prospective starters as relief pitchers for a season as part of their development – most notably the Tigers is recent years.

    Its amazing how many of you think that Joba will automatically be a dominant starter as soon as he’s put in the rotation. What precedent gives you that opinion? Phil Hughes? How well is he dominating right now? Ian Kennedy?
    Ross Ohlendorf?
    Joba is a dominant setup man RIGHT NOW! That’s where he is most valuable in 2008. and right now, Gentlemen (and Ladies), the Yankee baseball people agree with that assessment, too!

  113. PittsburghYankeeFan April 17th, 2008 at 11:24 am

    Sorry, this was a Joba thread.

    I agree with SJ44. Joba is going to be a starter. Unlike Mo, he has more than one plus-plus pitch at an early stage of development.

    When is he going to start? That is a different question. I would take the long view, in that it may not be until later this year or even in 09.

    They need to see what they have in Melacon, Cox, Sanchez, et al. This is likely going to take a bit of time.

  114. jason April 17th, 2008 at 11:24 am

    SJ you are preaching to the choir. This time last year Joba had pitched what, two games in A BALL.
    Anyone who follow it knows the Yankees farm system is absolutely stocked with relief arms. I provided a long list a few posts ago and still forgot Patterson and Whelan.
    You just don’t know what will happen between now and Sept. Just another hypothetical, let’s say the Yankees are convinced that Christian Garcia is the next Mark Prior/Kerry Wood in that he has unbelievable stuff but can’t stay healthy. He is going to be rule 5 eligible. Maybe they put him in the bullpen to preserve health and get value back from him instead of letting him go by way of the draft. He has Joba like stuff. He could be if healhty a front line starter. He could be your eigth inning guy. I am not saying the above will happen, I am just saying there are way to many variables to worry on April 17th.
    You do not waste Joba in the pen. A mid year transition to the starting rotation will mean 7 to 10 wins for Joba, will he get that many in the eight inning – don’t think so.

  115. jason April 17th, 2008 at 11:24 am

    SJ you are preaching to the choir. This time last year Joba had pitched what, two games in A BALL.
    Anyone who follow it knows the Yankees farm system is absolutely stocked with relief arms. I provided a long list a few posts ago and still forgot Patterson and Whelan.
    You just don’t know what will happen between now and Sept. Just another hypothetical, let’s say the Yankees are convinced that Christian Garcia is the next Mark Prior/Kerry Wood in that he has unbelievable stuff but can’t stay healthy. He is going to be rule 5 eligible. Maybe they put him in the bullpen to preserve health and get value back from him instead of letting him go by way of the draft. He has Joba like stuff. He could be if healhty a front line starter. He could be your eigth inning guy. I am not saying the above will happen, I am just saying there are way to many variables to worry on April 17th.
    You do not waste Joba in the pen. A mid year transition to the starting rotation will mean 7 to 10 wins for Joba, will he get that many in the eight inning – don’t think so.

  116. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 11:28 am

    If and I realize its a BIG if, Farnsworth and Bruney can be productive relievers this year, its the deepest bullpen the Yankees have had in years.

    Deeper than the Red Sox and deep enough to make the difference in the race.

    Especially if Ortiz has an off year.

    He obviously isn’t going to hit .121 for the season.

    I will say though that when guys with his body type begin to lose it, it goes fast.

    Right now, at least to me, its clear his legs are bothering him.

    His swing is all upper body. There isn’t any leg drive to his swing.

    While he had “minor” knee surgery, so did Jason Giambi and Mark McGuire (similar surgeries) at one time.

    They weren’t the same hitters after their surgeries.

    Similar surgeries for similarly sized guys. It does make you think.

    I don’t wish bad things for Big Papi. He’s one of the real nice guys in the game.

    I’m just saying that his knee may impact his performance this year.

    If it does in a negative way, the Red Sox are in trouble.

  117. keith April 17th, 2008 at 11:30 am

    Wins don’t really mean anything.

  118. gargoyle April 17th, 2008 at 11:32 am

    I’m convinced that the RS are quietly very concerned about Papelbon’s shoulder and his ability to handle the workload.

    He should be in his physical prime and they are babying him.

  119. jason April 17th, 2008 at 11:33 am

    Ortiz and PEDs.
    I have a legitimate question – this is not meant to just throw a rumor out there.
    is it possible the Ortiz was a PED user. The history is that he couldn’t hit, was released by the Twins and then a bit later in his career becomes one of the best sluggers in the game. When MLB starts cracking down on PEDs the last two years, Barry’s knees start hurting and is out, other alleged users start breaking down, David Ortiz starts breaking down.
    Mo Vaughn had similar trajectory. They had a similar body type although Mo was probably a foot shorter.
    Again, not to spread rumors, but it sure seems like Ortiz would fit the profile.

  120. CB April 17th, 2008 at 11:36 am

    “That’s an absurd statement. Several MLB teams have used their young prospective starters as relief pitchers for a season as part of their development – most notably the Tigers is recent years.”

    Really? Such as? Verlander was a starter right off the bat, as was Bonderman, as was Nate Robertson.

    The tigers have only developed 5 or so young pitchers in the recent past. With Zumaya and Rodney being the other 2. So none of their young starters were relievers.

    So what young pitcher are you referring to on the tigers?

    It’s actually very ironic you bring up the tigers because they actually have one of the best examples of how relief pitchers, even dominant ones, are neary always put in the pen because they fail as starters.

    Joel Zumaya had been a starting pitcher. But when the tigers looked at him they decided that he didn’t throw enough different pitches well enough to succeed as a starter.

    That’s why Zumaya wound up in the pen. The tigers decided he could not hack it as a starter. Because he only threw 2 pitches and only his fastball was a true plus pitch.

    Last year they were hoping to put Andrew Miller in the rotation but he wasn’t ready. Didn’t have great command and only threw 2 decent pitches. So what did they do – they put in in the bull pen for much of the year.

  121. jashell2000 April 17th, 2008 at 11:36 am

    CB thanks for the response. I agree with just about all your points. Here is where I don’t quite agree.

    I do fully understand that Mo is a “freak of nature”. And that “freaks” come around once in a generation. This is why he is a first ballot hall of famer. It is unfair to say Joba could be “the next Mo” as I agree that there will never be one. Just like there will never be another “Babe”,”Cy Young” etc. The sample size is too small still is my point. Even comparing him to Bobby Jenks is unfair because of shortness of time.

    You asked: “Do you really want to put Joba at risk for having a 5 year career in pinstripes?”

    This is a decent risk ONLY if we see that over the course of a Season or two that Joba just is not what he was supposed to be (a stud ace) or pedestrian. Becuase if in that 5 year window we are able to win a few championships with him in the pen, I would take that risk. I am praying that he makes it in the rotation (which he projects to), but as we all know predicting what will happen in baseball can be like playing the lottery. It’s anyone’s guess man. My main point was let him get to the rotation first before cementing his role, which is probably what the Yanks are doing anyway. Good discussion. Thanks.

  122. CB April 17th, 2008 at 11:42 am

    “Becuase if in that 5 year window we are able to win a few championships with him in the pen, I would take that risk.”

    Yes. This is where we disagree. I would never take that risk.

    Joba is the best young pitching arm this team has had over the past 30 years.

    He has as high a probability of being a #1 starter as any young pitcher in baseball. There is no young pitcher in baseball right now – majors or minors- more likely to be a dominanat #1 than Joba. None.

    There is no way you take chances with a guy who could be the anchor of this staff for the next 13 years.

    Relievers have much shorter careers on average than starters. Much shorter.

  123. SJ44 April 17th, 2008 at 11:46 am

    Unfortunately, in the times we are in these days in the game, PED whispers about players are going to be out there.

    I have no idea if Ortiz did or did not use PED’s.

    Its not out of the realm of possibility to speculate (as some have) because of his meteoric rise from being DFA’ed to being a superstar.

    I have a hard time remembering anybody who has gone from ashes to riches as fast as Ortiz has in the recent history of the game.

    Does that alone indicate PED use? No.

    His knee injury, the type of injury that is common with PED users? It does make you wonder a little bit.

    Its certainly not to the levels of having proof of any PED usage.

    But, it is something I’m sure has crossed more than one mind in MLB.

  124. jason April 17th, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    Yes, agreed about the meteoric rise, the type of injury, the loss of power the last year and a half, the loss of bat speed (at least some or pointing that out as a problem this season).
    It seems as if Boston got off too clean in the Mitchell report.
    I am not out to try to discredit arch enemy number 1, but you just don’t hear the speculation about Ortiz. In Boston some of the folks are quick to point to ARod as a potential guy, not understanding how good he was from the beginning. Now again in this era you just don’t know. But if you are going to look at someone like Arod you have to look at ortiz because there would be several checks in the “he looks like a PED guy” list – and his head is huge.

  125. PittsburghYankeeFan April 17th, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    SJ

    What about Carlos Pena of the Rays? DFA to slugger, correct?

    George Mitchell may have been deflecting criticism away from the Sox with his focus on Clemens and Pettitte. Who knows where that may have led? I think Papi is a nice guy, but he does fit the profile.

  126. jashell2000 April 17th, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    CB

    I do agree that:

    “There is no way you take chances with a guy who could be the anchor of this staff for the next 13 years.”

    I would not risk that UNLESS I find out that the “anchor” for my staff ends up being a “floating buoy”. The stats, projections all indicate that he WILL be an anchor. We agree on that. I hope that those are correct, and there is NO way I move him to the pen if that is established. All I am saying is that these projections have been known to be wrong. No one, other than God (if you believe in God) knows what will happen with Joba for sure.

    So, we agree that when Joba is in the rotation and solidifies as an ace he stays there.

    Do you disagree that if (and its a small if) Joba is not the anchor that he projects to be and is a “buoy”, you would not risk moving him back to the pen where he could be an anchor (even if its only for 5,6,7 years) and a chance to win a ring?

    Sorry if I was not clearer earlier. If you disagree, hey that’s cool. That’s why we are here to discuss.

  127. jason April 17th, 2008 at 12:11 pm

    By the way, the Red Sox and Papelbon issue is very, very different. First off he is a closer not a set-up man. Second the situation was entirely different. After his first year in the bullpen (after shoulder issues) he was being prepared in spring training as a starter. They felt it was the best role for him at the time. Only after they realized they had an absolutely miserable bullpen did they go to Papelbon and see if he would go back to being the closer. Boston’s bullpen was atrocious pre-Papelbon and the lucky signing that turned into Okajima (everybody thought he would be Matsuzaka’s waterboy/translator/friend.
    The Yankee have Mo, they have many, many options to fill to role.

  128. jashell2000 April 17th, 2008 at 12:28 pm

    jason

    Only after they realized they had an absolutely miserable bullpen did they go to Papelbon and see if he would go back to being the closer.

    I dont recall that situation going down like that.

    From what I remember reading (I was at a conference in Rhode Island and was reading their paper that day), Papelbon was the one who asked to move back to the pen. He just wanted to close more than start. I would have to do some research, but I am pretty sure that was what transpired. Had he not expressed that to the sox at the time (along with injuries), they were very well going to groom him into a starter. Yet again showing that the value as a starter supersedes that of a closer. Interesting to wonder what the Sox would be like today had Papelbon remained a starter.

  129. anderson April 17th, 2008 at 1:19 pm

    I STILL DONT UNDERSTAND WHY YOU PEOPLE KEEP ARGUING BOUT JOBA BEING IN THE BULLPEN, WHEN WE HAVE A TON OF GUYS COMING OF THE DL LIKE BRACKMAN, HUMBERTO SANCHEZ THAT CAN TAKE A PLACE IN THE ROTATION WITHIN THE NEXT ONE OR TWO YEARS AND BESIDES WHEN JOBA COMES OUT OF THE BULLPEN IDK IF YOU GUYS HAVE NOTICED BUT IS LIKE UNLEASHING A PITBULL ON SOME CRIMINALS, WHEN HE COMES OUT OF THE BULLPEN HE PITCHES WITH PASSION,YOU CAN SEE HIS AGGRESSIVENESS YOU CAN SEE HE REALLY WANTS TO EAT THE BATTERS ALIVE BUT HE SHOWS IT WITH EMOTIONS AND PITCHING NOT JUST HAVING THAT STUPID LOOK PAPELBON GIVES THE BATTERS ( WHICH I REALLY HATE) . THIS GUY IS THE REAL THING IDK BOUT YOU GUYS BUT EVERYTIME I SEE HIM COMING OUT OF THE BULLPEN I GET FREAKING GOOSEBUMPS BECAUSE I KNOW THE GAME IS OVER ONCE HE STEPS ON THAT FIELD,. THATS HOW GOOD I FEEL BOUT JOBA BEING IN THE BULLPEN.

  130. rover April 17th, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    Having watched ohlendorf the last few times he pitched. Believe he has the capability of setting up for mo. if he and hawkins continue to solidify, there is every reason to believe that joba could be stretched into the starting rotation at some point this year.
    The thing about mo other than longevity is the consistency through the years. the man has been uncanny. just to be consistent for four maybe five years is amazing. mo is actually an alien and in his alien time frame he hasn’t completed five years yet. sheesh.

  131. Boston Dave April 17th, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    CB or SJ44

    why is Clay Buchholz more often than not (in the lists I have seen) rated higher than Joba as a prospect?

    Both look like they’ll be #1 starters in their prime, no doubt. But I’m surprised Clay would be rated higher unless it’s strictly based on Clay actually having started in MLB (and throwing a no-hitter) vs Joba who hasnt yet. Still, it seems to me that there is no debate over their stuff – Joba is better. Again, that’s obviously not a knock on Buchholz… but do people really think he’s going to be better?

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