Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Bad Teacher II ! Grades for starting pitchers!

 Yeah, baby! We're back!

Doug K. and Horace here, with more of our general hilarity and Good

Teacher/Bad Teacher grades, this time for starting pitchers. 

Oh, and just so you know, apparently there ARE plans in the offing for "Bad Teacher II," but Covid has delayed, if not killed it. Yes, there is a silver lining to ANY plague!

But never mind that! 

We are here to do some serious baseball ranking, people.

So let us begin on those starters...

Gerrit Cole


The hardest mark to determine for this season. "Mr. Cole has the potential to be a brilliant pupil, but he needs to learn to apply himself consistently." 


The Cole Train seems like half-an-ace. A big game and sometimes he'll win, sometimes he'll lose, and sometimes the blues just seem to get ahold of him, to thoroughly mix my metaphors.


Generally, he's lived up to billing this year. But does anybody really trust him in the postseason?




Doug K


Granted he made a nice comeback after getting caught with his hand in the paste jar, but he seems a little too tightly wound to trust in a high-pressure situation.  That said, he’s a bit like Catfish Hunter in that, you get to him early or not at all.


Perhaps this limerick sums it up best…


Gerrit Cole, our ace… Number 1.

Seems to wilt when he’s under the gun.

He looks like he’ll bawl

When he don’t get the call

But his K rate is second to none. 


Grade B+

Luis Severino



The latest setback for Setback Sevvy was a real bummer, coming just as it looked as though he was back to his old form. If he can get there still—and nobody is more persistent—the Yanks might be unbeatable in the playoffs.  But that's a big hope.




Doug K.


Perhaps the lyrics to the Hot Chocolate song “Brother Louie” sums it up best.


Louie Louie Louie louie

Louie Louie Louie Lou I

Louie Louie Louie louie

Why is it your arm always dies? 


OK maybe not.  


I guess my issue is, what good is a great pitcher who can’t stay healthy? That said, and since this is a mid-season grade and he didn’t get hurt AGAIN until recently…


Grade: B+ 

Nasty Nestor Cortes



The feel-good pitcher of the year! How can one find fault with what the second-best 'stache on the team has given us so far? There are troubling indications that the rest of baseball might be catching up.






Doug K. 


Nestor the Deceptor!  My Dad, a big Bartolo Colon fan, would have loved this guy. Nestor is a pitcher. Chess match. All-Star. 


Grade: A

Jordan Montgomery



The Andy Pettitte of the staff. Rarely spectacular but very consistent. Knows how to grind it out when he doesn't have it. This guy is rock solid.


Question is how good he'll be against the big boys, come October. But then, Andy always surprised in that month.



Doug K




This is Jordan Montgomery’s picture from baseball-reference.com.


Why does he look so sad? Because every time Montgomery takes the mound, regardless of how good the opposing pitcher is against the rest of the league,  he’s up against Bob Gibson circa 1968.  That’s a lot of pressure.  If the Yankees gave him ANY kind of run support, he’d be 18-0!  

He might even get to pitch the 6th


Grade: A+

Jameson Taillon



The biggest surprise by far in the first half for your New York Yankees—the biggest factor keeping this team up in the lofty heights it has attained—has been the starting pitching. And the biggest surprise in the rotation, to my mind, has been Jameson Taillon.


I know, I know! I used to mock him not so long ago as Bushmills Taliesen. It's cruel what major-league ballplayers must endure. But gallantly coming back from injury after injury, he has been spectacular, running up the best winning pct. of any starter in the AL this year...


...until June, when he was generally pummeled, driving his ERA up from 2.30 to 4.01. His win against Boston on Saturday let us sigh with relief—but hold that exhalation! (Not too long, or you'll turn blue and pass out.) 


6 of his last 8 starts have been generally stinkeroo. Is this an indication that yet another injury is right around the corner?




Doug K.


I look at Taillon and I see trade bait. Ship him to Cincy as a part of a deal for Castillo. Send him to Oakland as part of a deal for Montas.  There’s something missing in this guy. I can’t put my finger on it. 


As you said, his last 6-8 starts were stink-a-roo.  I just don’t trust him going forward.


Perhaps Pink Floyd said it best when they sang…


Remember when you were young
You shone like the Sun
Taillon -  Get off the Diamond


Now there's a look in your eyes
Like black holes in the sky
Taillon - Get off the Diamond


Grade: B-

Clarke Schmidt



So, assuming that we won't be getting Luis Castillo, we'll need another starter for at least half of the second half. Who will that be? Clarke Schmidt? Is it possible that a Cashman first-round draft pick pitcher can crack the Yankees' starting rotation? And just 5 years after signing?


We'll see. Schmidt has pitched some nice, long relief for us this season, and his one start looked promising (if truncated):  1 hit, 1 walk, 5 Ks, 0 runs, in 3 innings against TB.  I have high hopes—but that's all.




Doug K. 


Like you said, he does provide some hope and the only way he’s in the rotation is if Hal and the Brain don’t get the number two starter we need. 


And, since I’m feeling the music today, let me add, to the tune of a famous beer jingle… 


There’s no time to relax…

One thing stands clear…

(We’ll need more beer.) 

If we’re starting Schmidt…

(We’re starting Schmidt) 

We’ve gone down a tier. 


Grade: B

J.P. Sears



What's not to like? The 26-year-old, picked up 5 years ago from Seattle for Nick Rumbelow, has been one of Coops' best "small plates" trades. Two starts this year, and ZERO runs allowed, in 10 2/3 innings. Even against Baltimore and Oakland, that ain't hay.


The question is, how much will making him a starter hurt a bullpen already depleted by injury?




Doug K. 


Don’t see him as a full-time starter this year but I agree the kid shows promise. All he does is get guys out. I hope they bring him up for good after the break. 



Rufus T. Firefly said...

I await the relief pitcher carnage. And another naughty teacher. Like my 7th grade Spanish teacher. Who was ironically French. And liked to wear very shear tops. And I was in 7th grade. But not a picture of her, just someone that looks like she did 50 years ago. Or Cameron Diaz. Or Michele Pfeiffer. I won't be too greedy.

AboveAverage said...

Have a Martini with your wife - RuT.F

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Only on Friday's. Bombay Sapphire, two large spanish olives. Rinse the ice with vermouth -- that's enough. 38 years and counting.

Did you go to Fonzie's West Bronx School (self) Barbering School for the Blind? Or was that just your avatar?

What'll you do when Joey finally goes? Maybe a Ca$hman rappelling photo?

AboveAverage said...

Mr Secret Word....

I've got four avatars ready and waiting. :)

Like your recipe . . .

There are a few other wonderful gins I could recommend . . . just to shake or stir things up a bit.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Don't do Kendricks -- too bitter.

Beefeaters (also bitter) if Sapphire is out. Which is rare. That's what I have leftover in the basement.

Shaken is correct. Started with a Carrol's bug's bunny glass many years ago, free when you bought a burger and fries. And perfect size for two small martinis. Also have the Wendy Witch and Yosemite Sam one's. But bugs was the only bartender.

Now the toolshed is quite extensive, but the minimal recipe stands the test of time.

HoraceClarke66 said...

I like Sapphire, but switched to Plymouth a few years ago. Excellent stuff. Like a nice gimlet with it—2/3 Plymouth's, 1/3 Rose's Sweetened Lime Juice.

Needs to be sweetened, otherwise it doesn't work.

AboveAverage said...

everyone likely asleep

there are other lovely gins available




If you're ever in town Rufus I'd be glad to shake up a few for you to sample

HoraceClarke66 said...

So many lovely gins! Good to see Stanton looking so happy.


JM said...

We can't stomach any gin but Sapphire. Everything else--and we've tried them all--is just too floral in comparison.

As my Uncle Joe used to say (the one married to Aunt Fran, not the farmer married to my mom's sister Helen), to each their own.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

AA, I think you are in the bay area. I have a friend in Saratoga. Last time in the area was grateful dead at Levi stadium for the "rainbow " concert.