The main item I wanted to see was how Colon came back…he was still pumping 95, had decent control and didn’t walk anybody; YES! That was so important to see. Colon has an ERA of 1 over his last 4 starts.
Nunez has had an incredible offensive performance against the Mets going 7 for 8 with a HR and 3 doubles in the two games. He also was robbed of a line drive for his only out that probably would have been at least a double. When Girardi was asked about what he will do at SS he laughed and responded Jeter is our SS and then gave his usual BS answer about how Jeter has been our SS forever and he will be our SS when he comes back. Now, I am not ready to give Nunez our SS starting job because of a few games, but not because Jeter deserves to hold it, but because Nunez simply is not a professional defensive SS at this point of his career and I have concerns he isn’t fluid enough to be there on an everyday basis. It is possible that he has played so many positions he can’t get comfortable, but the fluidity is still an issue. Jeter is not a good defensive SS, but he is a SS who makes the plays within his lack of range area at a very high rate. When you combine average defense (at best) with sub .700 OPS that is NOT a valuable player. The issue is we have nobody better right now. Of course, if Nunez would hit .339 with some power (as he has during Jeter being gone) one could make a case that he deserves to play over Jeter. I am fine playing Jeter for now, but I would get Nunez AB’s and rest the starters; he should be playing against every lefty. Oh and Jeter should not bat leadoff against righties…no way I would lead him off against righties. I believe there is little chance Girardi will be smart about this and agree with me though. Make the move now so you don’t have to do it after he breaks 3000 hits.
Not sure if anyone is aware but Cory Wade has now pitched 8 scoreless innings for us allowing only 5 hits while walking only 1. He is not overpowering, but he throws strikes and switches up the speeds and planes he throws. His career ERA in limited innings (107) is 2.97 and looks like a decent middle guy. BTW, his career WHIP is 1.03 so he doesn’t allow a lot of base runners and really limits his walks. I have not analyzed his pitching too much as of yet, but he has done a nice job and the limited history shows he is deserving of a spot. He just turned 28 and had a very good year with the Dodgers in 2008, pitched only 28 innings in 2009 and got injured without pitching at all in 2010. We really need to give Cashman and his team a lot of credit this year. I also believe that Larry Roethschild deserves a lot of credit as the pitching has been excellent all year.
Those of you who have read this blog remember me talking about one of the things ARod just does not do well and that is his feel for tagging runners. Many times he fields the ball too far in front (like Jeter) or is stiff on the tag (also like Jeter) and Friday night you saw him come up on the throw and miss the tag on Reyes. Fortunately the home plate umpire who covered on the play could not see the missed tag. BTW, ARod is still not great on popups (even though he hasn't missed any this year), but outside of that he is remarkably really aware about everything else in the game and has fantastic instincts.
Boston caught an easy matchup on Saturday and won…Tampa also keeps hanging in there playing better than I anticipated after losing Soriano, Carlos Pena and Matt Garza (who looked great pitching a complete game 1-0 loss for the Cubs).