Tag Archives: A.j. Burnett

Random Thoughts Vol.2

Hit me... I dare you.

It’s been a month… time for more random thoughts.

I’m pretty sure that even if Dontrelle Willis’s improbable comeback as a pitcher fizzles out, he can be a DH or first baseman with that bat.

The Pirates are now dead… I knew it couldn’t last.

FC Barcelona losing to Chivas USA is the equivalent of Michigan losing to Appalachian State.

Justin Verlander might throw 6 more no hitters this year… I’m not joking about that either.

The U.S. Women didn’t choke.

(I mean did you watch the game? Japan never died. They kept fighting back and took advantage of the opportunities that were given to them. Sure the U.S. missed chances in penalty kicks where the Japan goaltender all of a sudden looked like Ken Dryden. However, you can’t say that they choked the game away when Japan played well in the face of adversity. Sometimes teams give games away but most times teams pull victory from the jaws of defeat. That’s what Japan did.)

Isn’t it funny that Ben Roethlisberger provided good off-season news for the Steelers as opposed to everyone else?

I’m surprised Steve Williams didn’t rip Tiger Woods even more than he did.

The Red Sox have not had a solid starting staff for the entire season with bullpen issues… yet have been in first place since June. And you think Adrian Gonzalez doesn’t deserve MVP?

Randy Moss aint done… seriously.

Are Tyler Seguin and Brad Marchand the more extreme version of Mike Richards and Jeff Carter?

Seguin and Marchand are really enjoying winning the Stanley Cup.

I hate Merrill Hoge… but he was right about Tim Tebow…

And LeBron James would back him up wouldn’t he.

(My least favorite basketball player who shrinks in the moment defending the most overrated athlete not named Jimmer Fredette… god has a sense of humor.)

Kevin Durant dropped 66 at the Rucker… somewhere Russell Westbrook was seething.

Nice to see that Shea Weber got $7.5 million in arbitration… he’ll get that when he’s a Red Wing next year too.

The most aggravating rotation in baseball would consist of A.J. Burnett, John Lackey, Barry Zito, Edinson Volquez and Zach Greinke… with Burnett leading the league in headaches.

(I hate A.J. Burnett.)

The Eagles are the new Heat.

Osi Umenyiora can talk about a new deal all he wants. However, if he follows up another big sack season with a small sack season… kick rocks.

Ocho and Brady… Jesus.

What do you think Carson Palmer will do with all that money now that he’s retired?

Kyle Orton has lost his starting jobs to Jay Cutler, Rex Grossman and Tim Tebow…if he went on a 12 month bender I wouldn’t judge him.

Oklahoma is no.1 in the coaches’ poll. The last team to start the season no.1 and finish it as such… 2004 USC… good luck Boomer Sooner.

Strasburg is coming back… *giddy face*.

Shaq and Barkley on TNT… I need my cable back and fast.

The Red Sox traded for Erik Bedard to help their rotation… his ERA at Fenway is near 7 lifetime… I’m starting to feel ok that the Yankees didn’t get anything before the deadline.

Ryan Howard in his last 3 games has 3 home runs and 6 RBI, yep it must be August.

Michael Irvin on the cover of a gay magazine to promote equality of all people. Don’t know if I would’ve done it but very gutsy.

I win... again.

Duke being investigated for violations in recruiting… told you that no one is clean anymore.

When is Verlander’s next start again?

(We’re at a point with Verlander that he is must see TV. Verlander throws harder than anyone else in the league and his location has improved to the point where now he is close to pinpoint accurate. If you play the Tigers and Verlander is up on the mound then you might as well take it as a loss. He’s currently baseball’s best hurler and he hasn’t even hit his prime yet. Imagine this guy in 4 years… scary.)

Yani Tseng is the most dominant athlete in the world right now. And I am well aware that she is a 22 year-old female golfer and not many people watch women’s golf, but you should watch her.

Dan Uggla has a 25 game hitting streak… yet is batting .213… ummm?

NFL players like talking smack about how bad Roger Goodell is in the media, yet the signed this new CBA like everything is ok. Either take action or shut the hell up.

Is it wrong that I’m more excited for Syracuse football than Ohio State football? Keep in mind that I’m an OSU grad though I grew up with the ‘Cuse.

When A-rod retires there will be no specials on his greatness, no lauding over his accomplishments… hell there maybe a party thrown just for the fact that we never get to hear his name again.

(I haven’t been on A-Rod in a while but he’s like a bad ex-girlfriend he always finds a way to drive you crazy.

Really A-rod… illegal poker rings? And you still go after MLB and the Yankees tell you not to?

The Yankees are in a pennant race, one game back of Boston with the biggest part of the season approaching and you decide to blow a few thousand in front of low lifes, coke users and violent outcasts.

Eat your heart out Red Sox Nation.

I always say that I’m over A-rod but I really mean it this time. If this is true and A-rod did violate MLB policy then the Yankees should find a loophole in his deal, drop him like a bad habit and let Eduardo Nunez go through his growing pains at third.

I’m over the A-rod drama, I’m over the fact that there is always something with him and I’m ready to move on from him. Hopefully the Yankees brass feels the same.)

Kate Upton’s a Yankees fan, thank you God.

Had to end it off positively. Have you ever seen Kate Upton? That would make anyone feel good even when your third baseman is a perennial screw up.

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The Yankees Should Think Twice Before Starting A.J. Burnett

Joe Girardi, if you’re listening, at all… do not, DO NOT start A.J. Burnett in game 4 of the ALCS. PLEASE!!!

Learn from the mistake that Joe Maddon made in game 2 of the ALDS when he started James Shields against Texas. He knew that Shields wasn’t pitching well all year. He knew that Shields couldn’t shake his struggles and control problems. He knew that Shields wasn’t the right man to pitch in that situation, but still did. Why? Because he’s “Big Game” James. He was the guy that led Tampa’s charge to the World Series in 2008. Because he was hoping that James would find his motor once again in another big time series. He was wrong.

Girardi better be right about A.J. Burnett

This is the exact same scenario with A.J. Burnett. He’s 10-15 with a 5+ ERA, this is after a 6-1 start. He lost control of his stuff and never regained it. He struggled mightily against everyone. He had a 7.80 ERA in August and a 6.14 ERA in September. All of these numbers should tell any sensible manager that starting Burnett is a no-no even in the Arizona Fall League playoffs.

Yet here is Joe Girardi revealing his 4 man rotation for the playoffs and after Andy Pettite in game 3, there it is Allan John Burnett set to go in game  4. Why? Because last year when the Yankees only went with a three man rotation in their World Series run it was Burnett who set the tone in game 2 of the ALCS and virtually saved the Yankees season with a gem of a game 2 against Philadelphia in the World Series. Despite his 5.27 ERA Burnett put the Yankees in position to win each of their series after following C.C. Sabathia in the rotation.

This is why Girardi is putting him in the rotation. He didn’t pitch Burnett in the ALDS because of his struggles, but is hoping that A.J. can regain his form of last year and help pitch the Yankees into the World Series once again.

The problem is that no, and I mean no one believes that A.J. is fit to pitch on this team this year. Just look at his last simulated start a few days ago. he was wild, viciously wild, he hit two batters and threw a wild pitch, yet the Yankees brass are saying that A.J. took big steps forward in his location and delivery. Do I believe that? Of course not.

However when you look at the Yankees other options you  could understand why they need to talk themselves into thinking that A.J. is ready to go. You can’t do the three man rotation again with a young Phil Hughes and Andy Pettite off of an injury. You can’t throw Ivan Nova out there because of his inexperience. As for Javier Vazquez… id rather Hideki Irabu pitch for the Yankees that Vazquez. It honestly looks like it could be A.J. or bust. What else could the Yankees do, pull Joba Chamberlain from the bullpen and start him?

It’s the lesser of two evils for the Yankees right now, A.J. Burnett or a question mark filled field of pitchers. Honestly? I would take my chances with throwing Nova out there before I let Burnett go near the field. As clutch as he was last year Burnett is not the same guy this year. Throwing him out there is a huge mistake and would kill the Yankees shot at making it to the World Series. Unfortunately, Joe Girardi thinks differently. I really wish he would’ve talked to Joe Maddon first before making his decision.

 


Inconsistency Kills The Yankees, Here’s How To Fix It

The Yankees Inconsistency bug finally caught up with C.C. Sabathia

The Tampa Bay Rays effectively killed the Yankees season with that 10-3 beat down last night. Am I overreacting right now? No. we just aren’t a good enough team pitching or hitting to win a championship this year or to compete with Minnesota, Texas or Tampa. So here’s my solution to the Yankees problems—next year, because its too late to save the Yankees from a first round playoff exit this year…

  1. Get Cliff Lee and make either Ivan N ova or Joba Chamberlain a starter next year. As you can see the A.J. Burnett deal is slowly fizzling into a black hole as Burnett hasn’t been able to figure his stuff out now for 3 months. unfortunately in this economic climate no one in their right mind would be willing to take on a contract from a player with 3 years and close to 50 million dollars left on it. especially for a player that can’t find the plate consistently. However, you can dump Javier Vazquez into the Hudson River this season (I meant free agency, though I wouldn’t mind the former). I think Nova is ready to be a starter and you need to find out about what Chamberlain truly is at this point. There is no way to tell if he will be a full time reliever or if they can make him a full time starter with no friggin “Joba Rules.” The rotation next year should look like this: C.C. Sabathia-Lee-Phil Hughes-Nova/Chamberlain-Burnett.
  2. Sign Joe Girardi to a long-term extension, roughly 5 years/30 million. Why? I mean the guy has won a World Series and has them in contention this year despite not having any type of starting pitching, consistency from his power hitters Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez or at the top of the lineup with Derek Jeter (more on this in a minute). Girardi has been under scrutiny for a while and there have been rumors about him taking the open Chicago Cubs job due to his affiliation with the area and the team. Its important for the Yankees to keep some level of consistency on a team where right now there is none.
  3. This is the most important note as the Yankees season winds down and it has to do with Derek Sanderson Jeter. First and foremost give that man whatever he wants for a contract for the years that he has put in with the organization and his meaning to the Yankees as a whole. By season’s end he will be the Yankees all-time leader in wins and hits and will start next season less than one hundred hits away from that magical number of 3000. Jeter’s meaning to the Yankees is more than hits or numbers; he’s been the face of the franchise since the late 90’s and could very well be the greatest Yankee ever. If he wants 25 million a year for the next 4 years then give it to him… however as great as Jeter is, Girardi has to make this big decision when it comes to the lineup—drop him to either the seventh or ninth spot in the lineup next year.

    Derek Jeter's struggles at the plate have killed the Yankees.

His production at the top of the order has been dreadful as he has been hovering around the .260 average mark for the entire second half of the season and his .332 on base percentage hasn’t made driving in runs for the middle of our lineup easy. You have to move Jeter to the end of the lineup and put Brett Gardner and Curtis Granderson/ Nick Swisher in the 1-2 holes. Swisher has had a career year platooning between the 2 and 6 slots with a career high in average hovering close to .300 throughout the year. that’s what makes the Jeter quandary so tricky. You would think that Girardi knows this right now but doesn’t want to upset Jeter by moving him to an inferior portion of the Lineup. Listen Joe, I love Derek Jeter he’s been my favorite athlete for 15 years and running now—but at some point you gotta look at Jeter and say dude you have to bat there but you’re killing us here. There was a point in a series against Baltimore at home two weeks ago where we had an opportunity to score some runs with runners in scoring position and I saw that Jeter was up next and I got nauseous.

That to me has been the biggest problem with the Yankees offense this year, I think guys are hitting in all of the wrong areas on this lineup. The fact that Teixeira is hitting .254 and is still third in the lineup puzzles me. The lineup should have Gardner at the top followed by Swisher, Robinson Cano, A-rod, Tex, some combination of Jorge Posada or Lance Berkman at 6 or 7 and flip flop Jeter and Curtis Granderson at 8 or 9. That reflects how these guys have been hitting all year and would give guys like Tex and Jeter better pitches to hit to up their dismal averages. I feel Girardi is respecting his players a little too much and needs to do what is right. If he would’ve started batting Jeter in the 7, 8, 9 slot I guarantee you he would’ve gotten much better production out of him.
However, it’s a little too late to wonder about the what-ifs of this season. Unless the Yankees flip the on switch they won’t be making a run at their 28th title this year. The last two games of the Tampa series proved that beyond a shadow of a doubt. Inconsistent hitting, pitching and mind-blowing under achieving by guys that were expected to be major contributors to a repeat (that’s you Vazquez and you nonchalant attitude towards losing).  As a fan it stinks to watch you team win 95 games and know they won’t make a dent in the postseason, but hopefully next year Brian Cashman and company learn from their mistakes and do the right things to make this team better.