The LoHud Yankees Blog

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


Cashman maintains faith in Hughes

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Oct 27, 2008 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Phil Hughes has not pitched well in the Arizona Fall League. Counting the Rising Stars game, here is his line: 15.2 innings, 15 hits, 13 runs, 9 earned runs, 10 walks, 14 strikeouts, four home runs.

On Sunday, Joel Sherman of the Post quoted a scout saying that Phil’s mechanics were a mess.

Based on the statistics, that is likely true.

But this is definitely true: Of the 120 pitchers in the Arizona Fall League, 108 of them are older than Hughes. That stat courtesy of Brian Cashman, who shuffled papers in his desk until he found it this morning.

“Phil’s last two starts weren’t as good as his first two but I’m not concerned,” he said. “We sent him there to get innings.”

Keep this in mind: Counting Arizona, the minors and everything else, Hughes has thrown a total of 176.1 innings since the start of 2007. That’s less than half of what the Yankees hoped.

“I don’t view him any differently than I did at this point last year,” Cashman said. “He just has to pitch and refine his pitches and build his arm strength. That’s why he is in Arizona.”

Hughes is 22. Give the guy a chance to pitch before you decide whether he can or not.

As to other matters, Cashman said he and Joe Girardi are working on a third-base coach and talked it over this morning. There are external and internal options.

Cashman said that one possibility would be moving Tony Pena or Rob Thomson to third base and hiring either a new first base coach or bench coach.

If you’re still hoping Willie Randolph is coming back, he’s not. Willie is a finalist to be manager in Milwaukee (although he’s not expected to get the job) and he’s a candidate to be a coach with the Rockies. He wants back in the game. But going back to the Yankees would cause a mess for everybody concerned.

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