Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Could the long, seemingly impossible quest for a "Pedro of the Yankees" end this year?

In yesterday's win over the Detroit Whatmeworries - (Akil Baddoo? Spencer Torkelson? Niko Goodrum? Who's writing this season, Ian Fleming?) - the spellcheck-challenging Jonathan Loaisiga took on the workload of a starter. He threw 42 pitches - (Gerrit Cole did 61) and faced nine batters (Cole, 16.) It was a middle-innings outing with the stress and length of a mid-March start. 

See for yourself.

By the way, that ERA of Loaisiga's is for all of spring training, not just a one-game calculation.

Thus far, he's been the best Yankee pitcher in Camp Tamp. 

Seriously. He's thrown 8.1 innings (over four games) and given up two hits and no runs. Nada. Seven strikeouts. At age 26, his future looks golden - as much as any pitcher, considering elbows, rotator cuffs and things that go riiip in the night.  

At 5'11", Loaisiga represents one of our great, enduring fan fantasies - "the Yankee Pedro," a short, skinny firebrand, preferably RH, who not only serves as an ace, but who becomes an enforcer among the giraffes of the staff. Pedro Martinez famously threw high and inside, and if the Yankees protested, he'd smile at Jorge Posada and point to his head. "You're next." We hated him, loathed him, despised him! And ever since, we've longed to have one of our own. He's our white whale.

(A suggestion: I believe YES should hire Pedro as a color announcer. Not only is he funny and smart, but he - like Big Papi and other ex-Redsocks who are not named "Curt" - always speaks respectfully of the Yankees. No malice. No leftover hatred. The best part of this scheme is its nefariousness. Over time, Pedro would evolve into a Yankee homer. They all do, when you're paying the freight. Pedro switching allegiance would infuriate Bostonians. It'd be like Rachel Maddow  moving to Fox and gushing over Ted Cruz. Think of how angry Boston would be. And really, folks - isn't that what this is all about? Owning the bros?)   

Okay, back to Loaisiga, the short, thin guy who who throws like a Betances. This year, he's not alone using the child urinal in the clubhouse. Deivi Garcia (5'9") is chasing a rotation slot. (Technically, there is also Luis Cessa, 6'0", Nestor Cortez Jr., 5'11", and Nick Goody, 5'11",  but... whatever... meh...) 

I should also mention Luis Severino - a tad tall at 6'2" - who conjured comparisons to Pedro after Martinez mentored him over one winter. That pissed off Redsock fans, who felt betrayal. Fact is, considering Sevy's unending injuries, we should wonder if Pedro slipped in a curse or a backdoor hack. But Severino should return around July. Who knows?  

Either way, 2021 offers our best shot ever for the elusive Yankee Pedro. We have three candidates. And while we're at it, let's put Pedro in the booth, with Coney and Paul. The world needs a Yankee Pedro. How about four?


Celerino Sanchez said...

It looks like Cessa clinched a spot on the staff with another strong showing.

JM said...

Good news:

Marly Rivera
ESPN Writer
Miguel Andújar took some ground balls and has shown improvement (muscle strain, right hand) but not scheduled to play yet. Kyle Higashioka (side soreness) had "a good day" and was able to work out yesterday with no issues, manager Aaron Boone said he might play in Sarasota on Saturday.

And to Lasagna and Cessa, I just want to tell you both good luck. We're all counting on you.

Anonymous said...

"I guess the Yankees are my daddy." (courtesy of Pedro Martinez? How can you not want a guy who said that?

The Hammer of God

Local Bargain Jerk said...

With respect to Pedro pointing at his ear back in the day, I saw him in an interview years later and he said he wasn't threatening to throw at Posada's head, but rather he was pointing out that he thought Posada had big ears. If you recall, Pedro also turned around and pointed to his own ass during the same set of dugout hijinks. According to Pedro, he was trying to convey that he also thought Posada had a big ass.

Whether Pedro was actually threatening Posada or he was trash talking on him from the sidelines, that's an outgoing personality I'd give a listen to.

DickAllen1964 said...

I can’t help think this trend toward smaller pitchers is a good thing. The Brain has already tried the way of giants with erratic fastballs, and we all know how that turned out. I’m remembering the killer B’s: Betances and Banuellos. And then there was Farnsworth, a guy who had a blazing fastball similar to Nuke LaLoosh. He couldn’t hit a bull in the ass with a bag of rice. Those big guys always have trouble repeating mechanics. So, compact pitchers seem to me to have a better shot at consistent repeating delivery. I could be wrong. I usually am.

But overall, I’m pretty happy with the progress of the pitching thus far, even though nothing really counts.

And if Stanton manages to stay on the field for any appreciable length of time, even as DH, the Yankees might actually have something here.

Also, wouldn’t it be interesting if Gio wound up at SS? An infield of DJ at 1B, Torres at 2B, Gio at short and (and this is the big chink in my theory) Du at 3B would work for me, and might be the most optimal configuration.

But then, what the hell do I know? Let the games begin.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Right on, Duque: love to see Pedro in the booth. Hell, I never understood why Brain didn't sign him in 2009 when we desperately needed another pitcher. He's a class act.

Anonymous said...

@Hoss, Not signing Pedro in 2009 definitely worked out for us. He was the LVP (least valuable player) of the 2009 WS. If he wasn't on the Phillies for that WS, we might not have won.

The Hammer of God

TheWinWarblist said...

You're really losing it now, man.