Mid Season Grades

After coming out with the short end of the stick with yet another loss to a team that is in contention for their division, it’s time to critique the 09 Yankees.

Let’s start with the pitching.

The the Steinbrenners paid all that money to CC and AJ was to make up for pitching shortcomings that lead to the Yankees not making the playoffs last year for the first time since 96.

So far, the facelift to the starting rotation has only been somewhat successful. Sabathia has been great against teams that aren’t the Red Sox or Angels. But when it’s come time for him to show why the Yankees brought him into the the Bronx, he’s failed.

AJ hasn’t been that much better.

Andy Pettitte is showing himself to be a four inning pitcher at best.

And Joba Chamberlin is not showing himself to be the dominant pitcher he has been thought to be. His last outing in Los Angeles was particularly horrid.  The only thing that’s been more disturbing than his performances on the mound has been the laid back attitude he’s shown in the clubhouse afterwords.

He exclaimed that he and catcher Jose Molina had confidence in the weak assed slider he threw that turned into the game tying three run homer that tied the game the other night.  A pitch that any bum playing beer league baseball could’ve hit for extra bases.

He’s going to have to start taking an honest look at his performances if he’s going to help the Yankees win in the second half of 09. And the Yankee front office and coaching staff are going to have to start holding him accountable as well.

The offense has been good but not great. You can’t fault them for not being able to come back every time. But how many times can you have the bases loaded in one game with less than two outs and not come away with anything?

The thing that bothers me about this team is that they seem to be so enamoured with the idea of the comeback win. But great teams don’t rely on dramatic walk off hits to win. They get the job done well before the ninth inning, whether it be the bottom or the top of the inning.

 

So I will finish this by saying that the first place in the AL East is within striking distance. And there’s no reason that this team can’t get into a groove and make it happen.

But that’s going to take victories over Boston, the Angels and any other team well over .500.

Because teams known for great comebacks rarely do well in the playoffs, provided they make it that far in the first place.

Until next time fellow members of the pinstriped faithful.

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