When the Yankees signed Rafael Soriano, I suggested that despite the horrible contract, Soriano was such a good reliever that he should be used as a fireman. Then he got injured, and we all know what happened. I know that the injury shook my confidence in Soriano’s abilities, but I know the potential still lies for a dominant fireman-type relief pitcher who can propel the Yankees through high-leverage situations this October.
Since coming back, Soriano has pitched 17 1/3 innings with an ERA of 3.11. He has struck out 7.78 per 9 innings, while walking 2.6 per 9. Those aren’t the strongest numbers ever, but they aren’t weak either. You could expect someone to be a little rusty after sitting on the shelf for a long time. He’s been better in September, striking out 8 and intentionally walking just 2 in 7.2 innings, while allowing just 2 runs. His velocity has mostly been back up, and Girardi has been using him in tough spots, and on back-to-back days. More importantly, Girardi hasn’t been pigeon-holing him into one innings or situation.
Now, the truth is that David Robertson has surpassed Soriano (and frankly, Mariano Rivera) as the Yankees’ best situational relief pitcher. Along with Boone Logan, the three of them make a pretty dominant trio leading up to Mariano Rivera. The Yankees are going into the late innings as strong as they’ve ever been in a long time. It looks a lot like Nelson/Stanton/Rivera/Mendoza back there to me. If properly leveraged, the Yankees are going to be real tough to beat with a lead in October. The best part is that they’ve got the potential to add something like Hughes/Ayala/Wade to the back end. Its a flawless bullpen.
A lot of the focus leading up to October will undoubtedly be on how strong the Yankee hitters are, and how fragile the Yankee rotation can be. I’d suggest that the Yankees have just as great of a competitive advantage in relief pitching as they do in hitting. Detroit is going to field a pretty strong bullpen, but Texas and Boston can’t come close to keeping up with the Yankees. If a Yankee starter got knocked out early in the past, we’d have to stomach a few innings of Sergio Mitre, Chad Gaudin, Tanyon Sturtze or some other scrub and hope for good luck. At this point, I think the Yankees might be better off going to the bullpen starting with the 6th or 7th inning, no matter who (non-CC division) is starting that day. That’s a huge improvement, and a great sign for #28.
LIKE TYA ON FACEBOOK
- TYA To Merge With It’s About The Money, Stupid
- What about Kevin Youkilis?
- Teix Now Front And Center On The “Needs To Produce” Radar
- Cashman: Heathcott A Dark Horse Candidate
- A Dog Chasing Cars
- Outfield Trade Targets
- The Problem With Brett Gardner
- A Look At Relief Prospect Branden Pinder
- The Yankees Should Be Realistic, Put Team on Short Leash in 2013
- Briefly discussing the internal options to replace Curtis Granderson
- Brand bc on Briefly discussing the internal options to replace Curtis Granderson
- http://2804lasela.wordpress.com/ on TYA Predictions: Bold predictions for 2012
- the tao of badass pdf on What about Austin Romine?
- Joey Parkhill on Dante Bichette Jr’s Swing
- lululemon factory outlet on Contact Us
- Cary on Will R.A. Dickey’s Knuckleball Succeed In A Domed Stadium?
- Brenna on Links: Prospects, Support for A-Rod, Mariano is Love and Who’s in Center?
- Louis Vuitton Outlet Sale Singapore on The Monthly Prospector: April Edition
- Authentic Louis Vuitton Outlet Store on The Monthly Prospector: June Edition
- Louis Vuitton Outlet San Diego on Banuelos to Undergo Tommy John Surgery, Yankees Prospectors to Undergo Grief Counseling
TagsA.J. Burnett Alex Rodriguez Andy Pettitte Austin Romine Baltimore Orioles Bartolo Colon Boston Red Sox Brett Gardner Brian Cashman Bullpen CC Sabathia Chien-Ming Wang Cliff Lee Curtis Granderson David Robertson Dellin Betances Derek Jeter Francisco Cervelli Freddy Garcia Game Recap Hiroki Kuroda Ivan Nova Javier Vazquez Jesus Montero Joba Chamberlain Joe Girardi Johnny Damon Jorge Posada Manny Banuelos Mariano Rivera Mark Teixeira Melky Cabrera Michael Pineda New York New York Yankees Nick Johnson Nick Swisher Phil Hughes Prospects Rafael Soriano Red Sox Robinson Cano Russell Martin Tampa Bay Rays Yankees