Thursday, April 17, 2008

Man-Handled (Postgame Notes 17 April 2008)

There aren't many, but there are some certainties in life.

Death. Taxes.

Manny Ramirez against the New York Yankees.

One would have thought that, given Saturday's game, Mike Mussina may have opted to pitch around Ramirez, perhaps giving up the walk to save the home run.

Alas, this was not the case.

On some occasions, stubbornness can be a virtue. If, say, for example, you are general manager of a team in 1995-1996 and you refuse to trade Mariano Rivera.

When it comes to refusing to pitch around Manny Ramirez, who has long been known as a Yankee-killer, this is a bad thing. When this occurs on an evening where you, the starting pitcher, can't even make it to the fourth inning, it's not just a bad thing, it's a stupid thing.

All you have to do is listen to Michael Kay, Al Leiter and John Flaherty's call of Manny Ramirez's second home run, and you hear that they are not just resigned to it,l but that they expected it.

The worst thing about the situation is not that Ramirez had two home runs, but that the bullpen has been so depleted that Billy Traber, the lefty specialist, pitched two innings tonight. Hawkins, Bruney and Albaladejo have all pitched for multiple innings within the past two nights. The good news is that they did, for the most part, an admirable job, but the Yankees need to get more innings out of the starters.

Joe Girardi isn't afraid to spread the workload and not riding one pitcher into the ground, but there is only so much the bullpen as a whole can take.

The Yankees were not likely to muster a whole lot against Josh Beckett offensively, so while any loss is a disappointment, it's hard to blame the offense for this one, especially when the offense is down 7-0 at one point. That the Yankees climbed to within 7-5 is a testament to their fight.

OPTIMIST TAKE: The Yankees scored two runs in the ninth, refusing to go quietly against Papelbon. Traber did not give up a run in his two innings of work and Kyle Farnsworth, the only Yankee pitcher to retire Manny Ramirez, had a 1-2-3 eighth. Melky Cabrera continues to swing a hot bat.

1 comment:

  1. Any thoughts on the Farnsworth pitch?

    And seriously, Becca, you should write headlines for the NY Post.