During last night’s game, I found myself rather frustrated by the Yankees’ pitchers.
Javier Vazquez’s performance–which could be his last innings as a Yankee–was the cherry on top of the disappointment sundae that has been 2010 for Mr. Vazquez. He was one out away from giving up just four runs in 4.2 innings, but a hanging curveball to Aaron Hill changed that. I was sad for Javy that he gave up that blast, but there was a bit of anger in me. Granted, that anger had little to do with Vazquez and everything to do with the hitter: I have an irrational hatred for Aaron Hill. I don’t know why; I don’t know where it comes from…I just hate the dude.
Encouragingly enough, Javy did manage to get six swings-and-misses last night, but that’s just looking on the super bright side. As I’ve said many times, it’s just sad, and borderline painful, to see the 2010 version of Javier Vazquez. Many will stand up and say, “See? I knew he couldn’t pitch in New York!” but that’s ridiculous. Javy lost the zip on his fastball and the bite on his breaking pitches. Because of that, his changeup was ineffective. No matter what league, no matter what city, Vazquez likely would’ve struggled this year. Diminished stuff, not physical location, is what killed Javy.
Most of my frustration about the pitching, though, came from after the exit of Vazquez.
Even after the Yankees made it 7-3, this game was most likely not winnable and not high leveraged. Look at the WPA graph; the Yankees were never really in this game. Why, then, were David Robertson and Joba Chamberlain allowed to pitch? Robertson has had back spasms and should not be pitching in this low leverage a situation. Obviously, he needs to stay sharp, but I think resting him before an off day may’ve been a better choice.
Joba just threw the other night against the Red Sox and I think he, too, could’ve used another day before an off day.
I’m not really sure what Joe Girardi was thinking by throwing those two in this essentially meaningless game. I could see them pitching if the Yankees had a slim lead or even a slim deficit, but to throw these guys when the team is down four in a throw away game is maddening. I’m usually very supportive of Girardi and what not, but I’ve got to question these moves.
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