Friday, September 5, 2008

Pitching loses championships

If it was the moribund offense largely responsible for putting the Yankees in this unenviable position, then it stands to reason that the back end of the rotation is taking the honors of finishing the season off. See, sports are all about teamwork!

Oh my God. Can you even believe how bad Darrell Rasner is? As the Razz let the game spin out of control in the second inning on Thursday, I started thinking to myself how amazing it is that he was even in this position in the first place. What other Yankees team in my 20+ years as a fan allowed an obviously inferior pitcher to repeatedly shipwreck the team like this? Even more amazing, this undermanned version of the Yankees gainfully employs TWO such pitchers in their starting rotation. Where the fuck is the logic in that? That's bad managing. That's bad management.

After Rasner walked off the mound in a performance he was "ashamed" of (and that's saying a lot), he had allowed five runs on six hits over 1 1/3 innings. He gave his team no chance. The right-hander is now 5-10 with a 5.43 ERA on the season and has not won a game in the second half. I don't care what your team's pitching problems are, how the hell do you leave this guy in the rotation when he literally CANNOT WIN? Where's Adrian Balboa when you need her?

He has a 6.08 ERA in his last 10 games. He has allowed 87 hits and 24 walks in his last 62 1/3 innings. He has just two wins since May 26. And yet the Yankees have trotted him out there every fifth day, save a one-start audition by Ian Kennedy, the journeyman right-hander giving his team zero opportunity to sustain momentum in this lost season.

Rasner's partner in crime, of course, is Sidney Ponson. If you combine their last six starts, this is what you get:

Actually, hide the women children first.

Ready? OK, here we go: 20 1/3 innings, 29 earned runs, 44 hits, 8 strikeouts, 11 walks. That the Yankees actually one two of those six games is a miracle.

Add this slop to Mr. Pettitte's slide into mediocrity, and the Yankees never really stood a chance. I don't think I'm out of turn in saying whoever is in charge of this roster in the offseason has a lot of freaking work to do.

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