Thursday, July 21, 2022

Wait, you didn't think you were getting off that easy, did you? Bullpen grades!


This post is made possible mainly by Doug K., who stuck with it even when my internet—and all other connections, phone, TV, etc.—were rendered dumb for a while last evening, due to what a Spectrum operator told me was "trouble with one of the nodes."

Right. Love how the Dept. of Homeland Security is trying out these various excuses, no doubt seeing how they each go over.

"Chief, we got a 37% believed the 'node' excuse. Should we go with the next one on the list, 'Alligators in the sewers are real'?"

Here is the great Doug to lead it off. Management gets its grades between games.

Well, we’ve reached the bullpen and, even though we’ve thrown over 100 concepts at you, there are no other writers warming up so let’s get to it… 

Clay Holmes

Doug K. 

Remember when the Yankees would get reclamation projects or good pitchers from other teams and Larry Rothschild would somehow make them worse?  Isn’t it great that Matt Blake  took Holmes and turned him into the best reliever in the league? 

My only concern is that Holmes becomes both the standard and the reason for acquiring more guys who are marginal because “Matt Blake can fix him”. 

Grade: A++


Holmes has been the feel-good story of the year for your New York Yankees. Well, that and Food Stamps HAL keeping the budget in line, of course. 

Really, he's been terrific. I worry about that blow-up against the Reds. Hell, I even worry about the hit he gave up in the All-Star Game, to the hitless wonders of the National League. But yeah, hard to complain. Even for me.


Wandy Peralta

Doug K.

This guy is so much better than his face. Seriously, just before every pitch he looks like he just gave up back-to-back to back-to-back homeruns. The word that comes to mind is distraught. But he truth is the only person who is distraught is the batter he’s facing. 

Grade: A 


It's true, Doug! He DOES look like a hunted animal. And his name is "Wandy." But Wandy has curves that dive/ And keeps our team alive/ Above the skies...above the skies...

Ahem. Despite a couple bad outings, he's been another revelation.


Johnny Lasagna 

Doug K.

He was hurt so it’s hard to grade him on his performance before he was shut down. He’s rusty now, so it’s hard to rate him on his recent outings.  Before the arrival of Holmes, he was our hope to replace El Chappo as the closer.  Hopefully he will reclaim his place as the 8th inning guy. 

Grade: INC


Loaisiga could, really, be the key to not only our second half, but October. So far, that key looks like it could use a few cans of WD-40 (sorry), but with the injury, yes, it's only fair to go with:


Ron Marinaccio 

Doug K. 

After Lasagna and Marinaccio I feel like we should have a pitcher named  Fernet-Branca, (A great digestif  BTW, despite the fact that it tastes like you are drinking Vicks Formula 44 – I highly recommend it.) 

The kid is good, if non-descript. If you think about it, that’s what you want in a middle relief guy. Gets the outs and moves it along. Generally, we only notice middle relievers if they suck. 

He doesn’t. 

Grade: A 


It's true, another pleasant surprise. But who knows what he'll have coming off the DL—which he took fewer than 20 innings to get to.


Wait, you didn't think we'd forgotten, did you?

Michael King 

Doug K.

Hoss has been touting this guy for years and it looks like he was totally correct. He features a 2.19 ERA and 0.95 WHIP but that doesn’t even begin to tell the story of how valuable he’s been. 

Grade A++


Okay, okay, it's true. I'm a genius. Or as they also say, "Even a blind pig—"

Glad to see this guy break out. But he's rapidly approaching the most innings he's ever thrown in the bigs. Even a bullpen this big that gets used this much, will start to give way. 

But if King can keep it up, we can finish with him, Johnny Lasagna, Holmes, Peralta, and take my hand and we're halfway there!...Or all the way—to 1996.


Lucas Luetge 

Doug K.

Like Marinaccio, Luetge has a name I have trouble spelling.  That’s my only complaint because, like Marinaccio, he’s a perfect middle inning guy. 

Grade: A 


In the days of the pure loogy, Luetge—whose name almost says, "loogy"—would've been more valuable. As it is, a few cracks are appearing. Despite some nice outings, 12 hits in his last 10 innings. Hey, I worry, I worry...


Miguel Castro

Doug K.

This “lefty” shows promise. A real leader in the clubhouse. I do take issue with his idea of pooling all of the salaries earned by the team and distributing them equally or “according to need”.

Also, he has control issues.  They should trade him. I suspect he’d look better with a beard. 

Grade:  C


I dunno, I keep thinking we should have traded him for Carlos Guevara a few years back, or maybe Dave Engle. And yes, I object to how he forced all the bat boys and clubhouse attendants onto a boat lift in the Harlem River last month, but...

All right, all right. Hey, even if he were the real Fidel—a mediocre hurler in his day, who the Washington Senators supposedly scouted—I'd say it was a good deal getting him for Joey Rodriguez. Suck it, Mets!


Aroldis Chapman

Doug K.

Saved him for last because this closes the post and, hopefully, it’s the last time he closes anything. (Except maybe the door on the way out).  What can be said about him that hasn’t been said already. That he’s a pitcher of water? That bringing him into a big game is foolish at best?  That the letters in his name can be rearranged to spell Rolaids? 

At least he’s accepted his new role.  

Grade:  His real grade is a C- because he does get it done a lot of the time but I’ m giving him a D because he makes us suffer. 


Doug, you are, as usual, too kind. If this yutz is used for anything besides mop-up for the rest of his Yankees career, Ma Boone and Kid Cashman ought to have their heads examined. 

Even in his best days as a closer in the Bronx, this guy blew more big games than, I think, any Yankees closer in franchise history. The only good thing about him? His physical/mental/emotional breakdown will keep us from feeling tinges of guilt, should we somehow win the World Series with him on the mound ("Tinges," I say, which is sad.)

But he needs to go. Drainage at the Stadium is limited. So is my blood pressure medication/


And just to wrap up: J.P. Sears, Clarke Schmidt, Ken Waldichuk (if they're not needed as starters); Albert Abreu (if he can do it). One or more of these guys will probably be needed before the end of the year. Let's hope they can do it!



HoraceClarke66 said...

Sure, some bad luck today. But same old, same old against Houston.

We struggle to get one hit, while they toy like Rommel with our Monty.


Doug K. said...

Why is Chapman up!!!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

ranger_lp said...

With the power issues affecting YES and no commercials because of it, the broadcast is like a throwback to the first days of cable when there were NO commercials during the game...

BTR999 said...

Very tiring seeing the same lousy approaches at the plate.
Remember when Trevino could hit? Good times good times…

BTR999 said...

Torres not running hard at all on his last GO

Local Bargain Jerk said...

EXCELLENT. Top of the ninth, game just tied, and we have GALLO!

Life sure is good.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Why is Ma thinking of running IKF???

Gallo will walk or K. He ain't hitting a single.

BernBabyBern said...

When Gallo came up in the ninth, Maybin says he had "a moment where you can erase a lot of the things that have happened this season."

Uh, no. Those are forever seared in our brains.

BTR999 said...

Maybin tryin’ to be nice…
Oh god, first pitch hit for the assteroes.
Don’t want x innings anyway

Mildred Lopez said...

Dusty - Texas Boone

They were going to walk the next hitter anyway, set up the DP, so he wastes Alverez

Carl J. Weitz said... announcer, Maybin doesn't try to do too much.
And he succeeds at that.

ranger_lp said...


AboveAverage said...

beaten by the SHIT(FT)

Doug K. said...

You know who might have helped...

Soto. It seems like our pitching holds up for the most part. It's the hitting that get's us all the time.

JM said...

King. Ick.

Carl J. Weitz said...

The difference between the Astros and Yankees is that they bunt and go the other way. Hicks had the entire left side open and was lucky to hit an accidental dribbler. Instead of trying to go there.
If I were Boone, I'd order Hicks to hit to the left side. If he didn't, I'd fine him every time and then bench him for an extended period. I'm tired of these ignorant and defiant players.

ZacharyA said...

Surprised you two gave Lucas Luetge an A.

Yes, he has a nice ERA but he's allowed 14 of 28 (50%!) inherited runners to score. That's pretty terrible for any reliever and especially a lefty who is brought into jams to get big lefties out.

Platoni said...

There have been way too many bases loaded, no outs and no run(s) lately. Fuck!

Oasisdave said...

I HATE Houston

Doug K. said...


You're right. How does a B sound? And don't type


ZacharyA said...

Look at what Houston starters have done against our lineup. That's a combined 1.69 ERA by the entire rotation.

Cristian Javier
7.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 13 K, 1 HR
5.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 3 K, 1 HR

Luis Garcia
5.1 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 1 HR

Framber Valdez
6.0 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 7 K, 1 HR

José Urquidy
7.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 1 HR

Justin Verlander
7.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 1 HR

And this problem isn't going away when the calendar flips to October.

BTR999 said...

Better hope somebody gets HOU before we do in OCT and knocks them off.
I guess the simplest way I can describe our struggles is that their pitchers are better than our hitters.
Trevino, Torres, Gallo all looked bad today.

Why the fuck is Gallo still on this team???
Enough - Let’s go Cashman, trade him or drop him.

JM said...

I don't know if I want to watch. We'll do fine until late in the game, then lose.

Although German is pitching, first time in centuries. We may fall way behind early.

Celerino Sanchez said...

As Yogi said "It's Deja Vu all over again"

Doug K. said...

usually when you get the pitcher to throw almost 50 pitches in two innings you score runs.

They did this in the first game as well.


Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside said...

Turned on radio and thought it was the wrong station…. Damn away games.

Doug K. said...

they get guys on they score

Doug K. said...

Take him out!

AboveAverage said...

I guess Cashman is going to advise Hal that they should be sellers now .. . ..

BTR999 said...

German was dominant in the minors, but can’t handle a good MLB lineup.
Another loss to Houston.
Swept. Like dirt..

AboveAverage said...

Guess they want to try to get German to 60 pitches . . .

Rufus T. Firefly said...

German gets called for a balk.

ASStros pitcher balks every fucking pitch. No call.

And the Yankees are back to horrible situational hitting.

BTR999 said...

Rumor has it we have a hitting coach.
I guess the modern player doesn’t feel the need to listen.

13bit said...

I won't get fooled again.

JM said...

The committee hearing is better.

JM said...

Judge makes the score fairly respectable.

BTR999 said...

We know better.

JM said...


HoraceClarke66 said...

Why why why why would you possibly use German in his first, return start against Houston, particularly when you lose the first game?

They're going to Baltimore next. I know they're much improved—but German can't pitch there?

This is going to be a nightmare of a road trip.

JM said...

Boone is an idiot.

HoraceClarke66 said...

You have a point on Loogy Luetge, Zach! Next year, we should turn grades over to you.

Hinkey Haines said...

Is this what it was like to be a Dodgers fan in the 50s, or a Red Sox fan in the 90s? Your team was better than every team in baseball except for one. For the Yankees, it’s Houston. Unless they go all in and get Soto and Castillo, forget about getting past the Astros. They might as well trade everyone and start over if they don’t.