When the Yankees badly needed Cory Wade, he was all they could have asked for. Mariano Rivera and Dave Robertson landed on the disabled list within two weeks of one another, and Wade was key to the bullpen remaining a reliable strength. He gave up those crushing home runs in Anaheim and Detroit, but otherwise he was outstanding.
Since Robertson came off the disabled list, though, Wade has pitched five times and given up at least one run in four of those outings. The worst was last night’s four-run ninth, which let the Indians come back from a blowout and make it a game.
“He’s been struggling,” Joe Girardi said. “I’m sure he’s went through this before. Everyone’s going to go through it. We saw a guy who has almost 3,200 hits go through it for two months last year. It’s different sometimes when it’s a pitcher. It makes it a feel a little different, and it doesn’t make it any easier to know that some of the greatest players of all time have struggled, but we have to get him right. That’s the bottom line.”
The Yankees don’t have to lean on Wade quite as much these days — hence using him in a six-run game last night — but this bullpen is at its best when it’s deep, and lately Wade’s become an unreliable piece.
“He’s missing over the plate,” catcher Chris Stewart said. “His stuff doesn’t necessarily move as much as other guys and his velocity’s not as hard as other guys, so he’s got to be more pinpoint with his accuracy and it just happens to be missing over the middle. When your stuff is 90 and pretty straight, it’s kind of tough to avoid those mistakes.”
Associated Press photo