There’s little mystery behind the Yankees nine-game winning streak and overwhelming turnaround.
“If you pitch well, you’re probably going to win,” Joe Girardi said. “It just tells you how well we’re pitching.”
In their past 23 games, the Yankees have won 19 times. They’ve climbed from a tie for last place in the division to the best record in the American League. This is what their rotation has done in that span:
CC Sabathia: 4 G, 3-1, 3.54 ERA, 27 K, 7 BB
Hiroki Kuroda: 4 G, 3-1, 1.29 ERA, 22 K, 5 BB
Phil Hughes: 5 G, 4-0, 3.58 ERA, 33 K, 9 BB
Andy Pettitte: 5 G, 2-1, 2.88 ERA, 35 K, 8 BB
Ivan Nova: 5 G, 5-0, 2.48 ERA, 21 K, 7 BB
One thing you’ll notice is that the Yankees ace doesn’t have the best numbers of the bunch. In fact, if you don’t count Hughes’ rough outing in Anaheim, Sabathia has been easily their worst starter during this hot stretch (and you could make the case that he’s been their worst starter even counting the Hughes letdown).
Sabathia hasn’t been bad, mind you — he’s actually pitched right in line with his career ERA — but it’s been more of a grind than a breeze.
“I feel like I have good stuff and I can’t really dominate a game the way I want to,” Sabathia said after his last start. “Hopefully that’s coming.”
It could happen tonight. It will be Sabathia’s second consecutive start against the Braves, and it will be the Yankees second look at young Braves starter Mike Minor.
“Sometimes guys worry about (facing the same team twice in a row),” Girardi said. “But in other instances, CC might say, ‘I learned a lot from that game, it can help me out.’ I don’t know how much better Minor could have pitched, so hopefully we learned something from that start. Sometimes guys dont like it, but it’s not like CC has never done that before.”
Associated Press photo