Girardi: Joba To Make Roughly 30 Starts

Joe Girardi revealed his rotation today, stating that it would go Sabathia, Wang, Burnett, Pettitte, and Chamberlain. This seems like the right move, as he alternates his power type guys with his guys that depend more on breaking stuff, thereby giving teams different looks in a three game series no matter how the pitching matchups fall out. Girardi added that Joba Chamberlain is expected to make about 30 starts, provided that he stays healthy. That would blow past any projections that have been made about Joba’s usage, as well as any safeguards that many expected the club to implement after Joba tossed only 100 innings last season. I hope that this is just Girardi being overly optimistic, and that the Yankees have a plan to keep Joba at no higher than 140 innings going into the postseason. Homegrown aces are a rare commodity, and the Yankees would be not be doing themselves any favors by playing chicken with Chamberlain’s health.

(h/t Pete Abe)… Click here to read the rest

More Mediocy

This courtesy of SI.com columnist Jeff Pearlman:

AL East
1. Boston Red Sox—Oddly, I like their moves more than the Yankees. Penny and Smoltz could easily win more games than Sabathia and Burnett.
2. Tampa Bay Rays—I smell a letdown. But not a huge one.
3. New York Yankees—They’re becoming the 1980s version of themselves, Remember Steve Kemp, Don Baylor, Roy Smalley, etc …

As I have said before, there are plenty of good reasons to pick the Yankees to finish third. You may not trust their rotation due to health concerns, or you may think that they did not do enough to address the offense, the team’s most glaring weakness from last season. What irks me is when people make predictions and judgments based on silly, unsupportable statements. Liking the Red Sox moves more than those of the Yankees is entirely indefensible. Sabathia, Burnett, and Teixeira are each coming off strong years, and all are in their prime. Smoltz and Penny are coming off surgery, and Penny was awful last season.… Click here to read the rest

Exhibition games begin

Here’s the rotation for the first week of exhibition games (via PA).

Wednesday at Toronto: Brett Tomko

Thursday vs. Tampa: Phil Hughes

Friday at Minnesota: Ian Kennedy

Saturday vs. Minnesota: Joba Chamberlain

While Tomko will get the start today against the lefty, Brett Cecil — let’s face it — all eyes will be on Alex Rodriguez. A-Rod (along with Jeter and Cano) is expected to see at least some time in today’s game in Dunedin. Of course, although it’s rather early, this will allow him to adequately prepare for his involvement in the WBC.… Click here to read the rest

WBC rosters finalized

The WBC rosters have been finalized.

Great.

However, how are Jose Veras and Edwar Ramirez playing for the DR? I thought they both opted out (neither of them knew that they were on the provisional roster)? Plus, Edwar is injured, so I don’t know how that effects things, either.

In addition, Damaso Marte is also on the DR team’s final roster. Recently, Marte has been dealing with some minor hamstring issues and was cleared to participate in baseball activities only yesterday.

Stay healthy, boys.… Click here to read the rest

Clock Ticking On Andrew Brackman

[image title=”BRACKMAN3.SP.101206.RTW” size=”full” id=”1085″ align=”right” alt=”Photo Credit: NY Sun” ]The Yankees drafted 6’10” right-handed starting pitcher Andrew Brackman in 2o07 with their 30th overall draft pick, and he immediately underwent Tommy John surgery after signing a major league contract and being added to the 40-man roster. After a year of rehab, Brackman is finally going to start pitching in the minor leagues this season.

Brackman had a very short career as a starting pitcher at North Carolina. He was a two-sport athelete (He was North Carolina State’s starting center as a freshman), but still managed to post a 2.09 ERA in 43 innings between starting and relief, with 43 strikeouts and 18 walks. He was considered one of the best freshman in the NCAA. He quit basketball to concentrate on pitching by his sophomore year, but suffered a stress fracture in his leg and missed most of that season. He entered his junior year competing with David Price as the top college pitcher in the 2008 draft.… Click here to read the rest

Burnett and the AL East

Kat O’Brien did an interview with AJ Burnett, and there were some interesting nuggets in it. Burnett has plenty of confidence, but understands the doubts that people have about his ability to stay healthy. He credits his relationship with Roy Halladay in helping learn how to best take care of his body. He also had this to say:

“I really wanted to stay in the American League East, from a competitive level,” Burnett said. “I really learned the American League hitters well over the last several years, and I wanted to come back in the American League East.”

Burnett said he paid closer attention to the hitters during his three years in Toronto, learning the opposition at a deeper level than he had previously. The studying paid off. In the past three seasons, Burnett went 19-7 with a 3.29 ERA in 34 starts against AL East clubs. Overall, he was 38-26 with a 3.94 ERA in that stretch.

Those are some stellar numbers against a division loaded with great hitters.… Click here to read the rest