A.J. Burnett blames himself for last season’s controversy about who should catch who.
“It all went back to when I was right,” Burnett said. “If Jorge was going to catch me or not, it would be irrelevant because when my mind’s right, then everything is a lot easier for Jorge.”
Burnett threw his first bullpen session this morning, and Posada caught him. Burnett threw nice and easy through most of the session, and when it was over, he stood in the middle of the bullpen grass to talk to his catcher for a few minutes.
“I think sometimes when people talk about the relationship, they make the relationship bigger than it is, like it’s what they do when they’re not in the game together,” manager Joe Girardi said. “To me, it’s just the understanding of the pitcher when he’s on the mound that day and what you need to do. That’s the relationship that you continue to learn.”
Burnett said he wants Posada to catch every game and every bullpen he throws this spring. The two have a good relationship, he said, they simply didn’t communicate well enough when they had a few rough games together last season.
“That’s what started it all,” Burnett said. “I never questioned Jorge. Never would, never did. I questioned myself, and then everybody thought I questioned Jorge. He’s caught in this league for a long time, and I can do nothing but learn from him, so I’m looking forward to it.”
UPDATE, 4:08 p.m.: Here’s the Burnett audio.