Friday, April 17, 2009

At What Point Does the Bullpen Become the Blow-pen?

Yankees starters' ER thus far

6 ER, 7*, 2, 1, 0, 1, 8*, 2, 3, 1

(CC, CMW, AJ, Andy, CC, Joba, CMW, AJ, Andy, CC)

*denotes Chien Ming Wang start

Yankees bullpen ER thus far

4 ER, 0, 0, 1, 3, 7, 0, 0, 9

As you can see, with the exception of Chien Ming Wang's starts, the Yankees' starters have been efficient, only allowing more than three earned runs once, and that in the opener. Those kind of number you take from your starting pitching every time, and do what you can to get CMW to join the club.

The bullpen has, on the other hand had four scoreless outings. Four. Out of ten. That is, uh, not a very good ratio.

One of those occasions the Yankees' one the game, but four of the ten occasions the bullpen couldn't stop the bleeding, the Yankees lost the game. That's four out of five Yankees' losses this season.

I know it's still early, and the bullpen road to Mo (who, by the way, exists on a higher plane than mere 'bullpen') hasn't quite sorted itself out yet, but that has got to be a concern.

If the bullpen allowed 0 ER, the Yankees right now would be 7-3 instead of 5-5. It's early in the season, but it's two games in the standings in a division that may only be decided by one game come the end of September.

Now, I'm not so reactionary as to be advocating a complete bullpen makeover-at least, not yet-but heads should be turning. We know what happened to the 2008 Mets.

The Yankees are getting pretty darn good starts from four of their five starters. There have been 10 games, 8 not started by Chien Ming Wang, and of those eight, five were quality starts--with CC's today being only an out shy of a sixth.

The bullpen has got to make sure they stand up.