Before we get to the usual Yankee-Red Sox excitement, a brief word on A.J. Burnett. Here’s Steven Goldman:
His numbers aren’t that bad,” said Joe Girardi on Wednesday night. “If you look at the numbers of Hughes, I mean, Hughesy made one good start. We look at the whole year, and A.J.’s been decent for us.”
Joe: you’re measuring by the wrong yardstick, the yardstick of hyper-inflated super-offense. We aren’t there this year. The AL is scoring 4.3 runs per game. The last time you could say that was 1992. Burnett hasn’t been the outright disaster that he was last year, but “decent” might be generous. His ERA has risen every month of the season. He has a career-high home-run rate going… And he’s signed through 2013, so no one wants to admit that the higher upside is to be found elsewhere.
Mike Mussina was dropped from the rotation when he struggled in 2007. Ron Guidry was sent to the bullpen a couple of times towards the end of his career. It doesn’t have to be that Phil Hughes ends up in the bullpen, assuming he continues to pitch well (big assumption, I know) or Ivan Nova heads to Triple-A. There are other options, no matter how seemingly disruptive. The point is to win, not to spend four years avoiding the consequences of an ill-considered contract.
Loyal reader, Dina Colarossi, has a fine solution: “I think his new role should be sitting in a dunk tank outside the stadium before every game. Charge people $5 a shot, and they will recoup his contract in no time at all.”
And just think how much better we’d feel.
[Photo Credit: N.J.com]