Last night’s game: My main eye raising move was when Girardi took Eppley out. Eppley had pitched well in the 6th inning to get his 2 outs (he allowed an infield hit, but his ball was moving well and down. Girardi allowed him to face Zobrist who he handled well. Zobrist is a pretty equal hitter against both so that seemed OK. Then with the lefty Luke Scott up, Girardi went to Logan (who of course was pinch hit for with S. Rodriquez). It is OK to make other managers make moves, but as many of you have read over the years, when a pitcher is looking very good, I don’t like looking for the pitcher who may not have it (even though I do advocate matching up). Yesterday, Eppley faced 3 hitters and all 3 beat the ball into the ground. I would have let him face Scott and the righty catcher on deck. At that point you can see what is going on. Girardi went to Logan who walked Rodriquez and then went 3-0 with a wild pitch before getting the right handed catcher. At this point Girardi went to Robertson. Kind of makes you wonder why he didn’t go to Robertson to face the righty immediately?
While I am criticizing Girardi, why did Garcia come out and pitch the 6th? In the 4th he allowed the HR and in the 5th just a single, but you got 5 innings with only one run; time to go to the bullpen…right? No, after getting the first out he allows a HR to Pena and then Girardi takes him out? Pena is a HR hitter, so if you really want to take him out, then bring in a lefty against Pena before any damage is done. There is no plan there. Did the HR make Girardi think Garcia had lost it? People talk about his bullpen skills, but when you don’t have the 7, 8th and 9th easily covered, is it really hard to manage the pen? I think Girardi failed last night and failed the previous loss as well.
That being said, it would be nice to see Robertson get the job done! His oblique injury has been really costly for us because he has come back and not been anything like his former self. We will need him.
· I never wrote about the Pettitte injury; and I won’t write much…it is a big loss as he was pitching really well. Hopefully when he comes back he will be back at full strength (unlike Robertson)
· Joba has been throwing 20 pitch sessions so he should be back this year
· Aardsma is scheduled back to the Yanks in a 2-4 weeks
· I even heard Feliciano may have a shot at coming back; would be nice to get something out of him
· It would have been nice if Tex could have kept the ball in the infield even if he missed it…he has been pretty rock solid though so it just happens sometimes.
· Don’t overlook the good start by Garcia. Part of the frustration I had with not taking him out after 5 innings of one run ball is that I would hope he could get another good start in and perhaps be trade bait (not that we would get a lot but someone might see value?)
· Yanks made a trade getting Qualls as a bullpen righty for a PTBNL. Qualls has a sinking fastball that was 92-94 last night and a slider. He is pretty good against righties, but lefties can hit him. He is an OK pitcher with that good sinker, but with Aardsma and Joba potentially coming back I am not sure the value unless some trades are in the works (as they should be)
· How about the job Tampa has done with Fernando Rodney. He has a career over 4 ERA and this year it is 0.98. He has a ridiculous .415 OPS against this year!