Stuff to think about

burnett_250_051309.jpgBy Jon Lane
There’s nothing anyone could have done about Tuesday’s loss in Toronto. Roy Halladay is one of the top five pitchers in the game and was so dominant neither the 1927 nor the 1961 Yankees were hitting him. Doc also continued his ownership of the Yankees. He’s 13-2 over his last 19 starts and 16-5 with a 2.79 ERA lifetime.

Meanwhile, A.J. Burnett is 0-1, 6.47 and has allowed five home runs in his last five starts. It’s May 13 and already it’s desperate times for the Yankees. Almost half the team is on the shelf or flirting with the disabled list, CC Sabathia is hoping to finally gain traction off Friday’s nine-inning whitewash of the Orioles and Chien-Ming Wang will need one more Minor League start before he returns. Burnett has had his chances to show he can carry a team in need and hasn’t done it.

Wang, meanwhile, threw six shutout innings for Triple-A Scranton Tuesday night, giving up three hits walking three and striking out six. It’s still impossible to believe a two-time 19-game winner is 0-3 with a 34.50 ERA. The Yankees are praying that was due to the weakness in his hip abductor muscle and not anything mechanically or emotionally.

It’s gotten ridiculous with these injuries. Derek Jeter sat out Tuesday with a strained rib-cage muscle and hopes to play tonight. Hideki Matsui, already playing on creaky knees, now has a tight right hamstring. Matsui says it’s only a cramp, but I’d be surprised to see Matsui for the rest of this series given the Rogers Centre turf.

Normally, when in times of crisis, Andy Pettitte is the one you’d want on the mound. However, the veteran left-hander is 0-1 with a 6.62 ERA in his last three starts. This is a team that was pegged not only for greatness, but to do something special. Keep the faith that things can turn around quickly in this game, but at this rate the Yankees are looking like the 1992 Mets (minus the dysfunction). That team signed free agents Bobby Bonilla, Eddie Murray and Bret Saberhagen and had visions of a World Championship. They finished 72-90.

A bit over the top? Maybe so. But the Yankees Version 2009 are laden with big names who are also aging veterans. There’s no need to worry about Sabathia, but Burnett is not doing what he did last year and any defense of Mark Teixeira and his history of slow starts no longer carry merit. Teixeira went hitless in four at-bats on Tuesday and has been stuck below the Mendoza line the past week.

This team needs to get healthy and get it going – quickly. The days of the AL East being a two-team race are long over, which means the Yankees are vulnerable to getting buried sooner than you think.

4:57 p.m. Jeter and Matsui are both out of tonight’s lineup. Reports out of Toronto say the captain is hoping to return tomorrow.

5 Comments

Yeah, Mark Teixeira is worthless. Anyone have Giambi’s phone number? At leat it was ammusing to watch him run the bases.(hahahah)

The 1927 Yankees are alot better than anything out there now.I would not say the 1927 yankees would not have beaten Halladay.
The season is just started. If the yankees get healthy- which they probable will and stars like Mark Teixeira and Chien-Ming Wang return to form the yankees will win .No team has had as much misfortune as they have had. To think Teixeira has forgotten how to hit is silly.
The sason is 162 games not 35.

I’m sorry but last night’s line-up looked like a road game in
Spring Training. Does anybody really think that a line-up with Gardner, 2009-Teix, Cash 0-0, and Pena + our highest average guys batting 6th and 7th, is going to produce a lot
of runs??

For me the number of injuries has been most incredible. What horrible luck the Yankess are having with that! I am really hoping that everyone is dong their stint on the DL early in the year so they can stay of it later and remain healthy the rest of the year. I think the pitching has not been horrible in every case, and if we could get more hits and not leave people on base, we could help these pitchers win more games. Of course, the outings by Hughes and Wang were not really winnable after they got pounded. I still have hope that Tex will get it together before too long.

The point is now moot, of course, but why should the turf matter for a DH?

Anyway, this team looks like it’s in trouble. The best chance is for the pitching to step it up, because the position players are looking a bit thin right now. Gardner at the top of the lineup is a terrible sight to behold.

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