R. Hernandez C
L. Hernandez SS
Notes: Edwar Ramirez is in the clubhouse. But the Yankees won’t say who is being sent out. I would assume it’s Jon Albaladejo. … Beautiful day here in Baltimore. … The Yankees have homered in five straight games. … Yankee pitching has allowed 16 runs on 27 hits in the last two games and needed 11 innings out of the bullpen.
Back later with updates
UPDATE, 6:17 p.m.: Albaladejo was indeed optioned to Scranton. … Ramirez is here because he hasn’t pitched in three days. How do you figure Scott Patterson feels about now? … No word yet on Joba. But he has thrown two sides in Nebraska (one yesterday) and won’t go on any sort of rehab before joining the team again. It sounds like he could be back soon. Understandably, the Yankees aren’t setting any sort of deadline. … Andy Pettitte is back in Texas because of a death in his family. He will return tomorrow and make his start on Sunday.
UPDATE, 7:48 p.m.: Hughes has thrown first-pitch strikes to all nine hitters he has faced. The problem is that he has gone to three-ball counts on four of those hitters and has already thrown 40 pitches. But he’s right around the plate and working at a good pace.
UPDATE, 8:27 p.m.: Shelley Duncan, the Babe Ruth of the International League, has homered and doubled for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Moosic/Lackawanna Yankees. Shelley now has four home runs and 10 RBI in nine games.
Plus I believe that every SWB Yankee has a giant bruise on their forearm.
UPDATE, 9:23 p.m.: Phil Hughes will get tagged with a loss tonight (barring a miracle) and some people will want him out. But there was definite improvement tonight with his fastball command. He threw too many pitches, but he also didn’t much help from his defense.
I remain of the opinion that he will one day be a very, very good starting pitcher. But the Yankees rushed him to the majors last season and they seem OK with the idea of his developing in the big leagues.
That’s fine. Just understand that it’s going to be very difficult for the Yankees to make the playoffs and develop Hughes and Ian Kennedy at the same time. Right now, this is a team with two reliable starters.