Yankee bullpen vultures win; offense vanishes against yet another bullpen in extremely agitating 4-3 loss

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

I’ve been about as calm and rational as I know how to be during May, a month that has seen the Yankees stumble to a 12-13 record due to a volatile combination of mediocre pitching performances and offensive hibernations, but I finally lost my patience during tonight’s game against the Mariners, a contest the Yanks ended up dropping 4-3 while facing the second-worst offense in the league.

Adding insult to injury, the Yankees managed to not only take a 3-0 lead against rookie phenom Michael Pineda, but knocked him out after just five innings. Unfortunately A.J. Burnett was just as inefficient, and also had to depart after five innings, though he only surrendered two runs. With Burnett out, Joe Girardi went to Boone Logan in the 6th, and Logan of course failed to do his one and only job, which led Joe to go to Luis Ayala in a high-leverage situation for some reason. Ayala gave up a single and a walk to load the bases, and the Mariners then took the lead on two groundouts. In fact, all four Seattle runs were scored on groundouts. Awful.

But that’s not the worst part — Yankee pitching allowed 13 baserunners to the Mariners, a team that had a .302 OBP coming into this game. That’s just straight-up unacceptable. The second-worst part was that the Mariner bullpen held the Yankees scoreless over the final four innings; an occurrence we’ve seen far too many times this season.

Despite all of this negativity, the Yankees are only a game out of first, but the team really needs to start playing better baseball soon. You can only coast by on .500 for so long, and the team hasn’t even been able string together a winning streak of more than three games yet this season. Not that lengthy winning streaks are imperative, but it’d be nice to see the team actually get on a roll at some point. Unfortunately the earliest that next win can come is Sunday, what with King Felix on the mound Saturday night.

13 thoughts on “Yankee bullpen vultures win; offense vanishes against yet another bullpen in extremely agitating 4-3 loss

  1. Felix vs. Nova is going to be one of two things; it’ll either be “Well, Suzyn, sometimes you CAN predict baseball” or it’ll be a classic reverse lock.

    • I sure hope you’re right about the reverse lock. A rare win against Felix would go a long way toward reversing the lousy feeling from last night’s mess.

  2. Last night was really tough to take, like losing to Dickey a week ago. I thought they exposed Pineda somewhat, he doesn’t throw as many strikes as he should and a good, patient team can exploit that. Also, they clearly had a scouting report that said ‘run on him’ with the way Russel Martin just took off on that first pitch, not even waiting to read his move. It might have been an off night for Pineda, but first time through the league some lesser teams may be swinging at ball 4. The Yanks had a good advance report on him, scored 3 runs, knocked him out by the 5th. You have to win that damn game. Just brutal.

    Then the way they scored all their runs on infield hits/outs was just adding insult to injury. And if you add insult to injury, you get “injsultry” which makes no sense whatsoever. :wink:

    • steve right on all points , lose to dickey,and i like your morphed word..says yanks state of 2011. last night when ayala put his first guy on after logan girardi should have pulled him and put his best pitcher in .be it joba or robertson..the game was on the line at that point..we needed to get out of that inning like it was the 9th.we would still have 8th and 9th covered. joe has this model he follows and can not deviate from it .which is ignorant.two guys on 0 outs 1 run lead, they have a great pen..if he was worried about patching innings burnett should have come back out..i would not have sent him out.he just mismanages the pen at times, that ,you ask what is this guy thinking..

    • “Doesn’t throw as many strikes as he should”? He’s throwing 69% of his pitches for strikes–league average is 63% (according to baseball-reference.com). Yes, last night he only threw about half of his pitches for strikes, but that was not a normal performance for him. I also read some grumblings about an inconsistent strike zone from the umpire, but I didn’t see much of the game myself, so I’m not going to venture my own opinion on the subject.

  3. Good call Larry, last night was frustrating as shit. Ayala in the 6th, yikes. My gambling intuition agrees with Matt, reverse lock so that probably means the opposite will happen.

  4. May I just point out to all the people filled
    with self righteous glee who say they dont
    need soriano. If soriano is healthy robertson
    stats the sixth joba 7th. Losing soriano to
    ineffectiveness and then injury was a blow.
    The drop off from robertson to guys like
    ayala is just tremendous. Journeymen
    relievers eventually get exposed.
    Ps enough already with logan I’m losing

  5. Watching Ayala throw the game away, like everyone else, I asked myself why. Many complain that Logan and Ayala are pieces of crap; Joe has terrible judgement.

    Many say the Ayala call begged for Robertson’s unjamming abilities: one on, no outs? (lotsa walks?)

    With Soriano down, Joe is giving Logan and Ayala opportunities to establish themselves, although both failed badly last night. But where is he to find another Aceves if he doesn’t try?

    • How about letting Hector Noesi have a chance in something other than long relief? I know he has only made 2 appearances so far but Noesi has already shown more pose and better stuff than Ayala ever has or will. Plus, we still have Pendleton here to fill the spot of long reliever so it wouldn’t be a problem to put Noesi in a larger role.

      • girardi had all those pitchers for one inning, in a one run game..logan as i have said all along is a dog. when is marte and or the exmet coming back..if not they must find a tough lefty ..or wait until july and bring up banuelos..watch his innings in AA..

      • Well, Hector pitched a very clean two innings last night. So, yeah, he’s a developing option, but Logan (neither dog nor crap) and Ayala (more potential than you credit) each pitched a fine inning. Better to have three options than one, especially if the starters don’t go further than they have.

  6. I wouldn’t blame the bullpen. Since when is three runs enough to win a game with four innings to go where you have to use your bullpen?

    Since the Yankeees are drawing the worst offense in the AL in the Mariners? The Mariners will not always be the worst offense every night. Last night was one of those nights.

    If the bullpen gave up only one run in the final four innings for a 2.25 ERA, that’s a 3-3 tie and extra innings. What good is that? The game is still tied, not over, and it’s still advantage Mariners cuz they’re the home team. Who knows what happens in “free baseball” time?

    The REAL problem with this team is the everyday players are not mentally prepared and/or strong enough to hit to the best of their capabilities or near them. They also let down when scoring early (proof is in their runs scored per inning) and/or can’t handle the pressure of being given good pitching depending on the game.

    What else? They can’t ALWAYS run into good or better pitching.

    How about this Yankees team which leads the league in runs scored, homeruns, on base percentage, and slugging start hitting like that on a consistent basis?

    How ’bout Derek “I Fenegled Three Years Out Of Scared Yankees Ownership” Jeter hit like Granderson or Martin for more than a game or two? He must’ve thought to himself “I’m lucky I got three years or I’d be a goner after this year” at some point this season already and that alone should light a fire under his ass I don’t see. He looks like a guy who just got his. Well I say, warn him he’s out as in released, traded, or given the option to retire after next year if he doesn’t hit like he did before 2010 in 2012 cuz he can’t post up .245/.293/.280 on 5/28/12. He wasn’t a washed up bitch last year, but he looks like one this year and could be by year’s end, and if he had any decency or self-respect, he’d hang it up after this year if he finished with the aforementioned slashline or slightly better.

    What’s killing the Yankees so far is Granderson and Martin have been the most consistent hitters and with all due respect to both, that’s horrible and can’t be!

    • Yeah, D’uh, pretty much. But Sat. night, I saw signs of the offensive machinery firing up. Cano smoked four-five balls, Tex was a beast that “Felix wanted no part of” (Coney). In my opinion, his stance and swings shook both Pineda and Felix out of their usual composure and confidence. Grandy tripled at the right time. Even Swish hit three on the nose. Finally, Derek was happy to dink ’em: this is key, because Cap’n Clutch got his name from such.

      Alex has been singling well, but I think he has an impediment that’s limiting his former fierceness. Russell and Brett are fighters. Jorge, I don’t know if his head is ever going to untwist at this point.

      The offense is heating up: it’s the starting pitching, and thus the strain on the bullpen I worry about. Pray that Bartolo keeps it up, Garcia keeps on, AJ finds true confidence and work in that changeup, and CC reestablishes his killer changeup. And that Ivan keeps working bravely.