The LoHud Yankees Blog

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

Return to form, or a bump in the road?

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Podcast on May 17, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

An inning got out of control. A.J. Burnett had been pitching so well, and the Yankees had given him a lead, and suddenly Burnett’s outing imploded. It felt like last year.

“Last year’s gone, man,” Burnett said. “We need to turn a page about talking about last year. This is this year. If ya’ll can’t tell that I’m better this year already, then I don’t know what else you want me to do.”

One night doesn’t define a season, and one inning certainly doesn’t define a pitcher. Burnett was right. He has proven himself to be a better pitcher this season, and one night doesn’t change that.

But this is Burnett we’re talking about, and last night was a winable game until he blew it. It’s hard not to think about last year, even if Burnett’s right to call it a thing of the past.

“Everyone is going to have a tough start,” Joe Girardi said. “You see guys take a lot of steps forward, you see them continue to get better, and sometimes they’re going to take a step back. The thing is, you have to take a couple steps forward the next time, and you’ve got to get yourself back on that track.”

Maybe it was just Burnett’s turn. In this on-going Yankees debacle, everyone but Curtis Granderson seems to have taken a turn as the player — or one of the players — responsible for a loss. Last night, Burnett took the blame.

“It’s not positive, I’ll say that,” Burnett said. “But it will be. I think I’ve come too far to let one inning pop in my head, so we go back to work. These guys came out and gave me a chance and I let it go.”

Here’s Burnett speaking after last night’s game.

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Associated Press photo




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