45° Good Morning
45° Good Morning

A.J. Burnett, Brett Gardner, David Ortiz, Jason Bay and fired hitting coaches

At the Yankees' loss to Boston, I wrote about A.J. Burnett, who recorded another brutal start. Burnett did not react well at all when asked about how bad he has been against the Red Sox since joining the Yankees, and it wouldn't surprise me if Burnett issued an apology today for his usage of the word "retarded."

We've discussed it here before: The Yankees were foolish to pay a premium for Burnett due to the success he had experienced against the Red Sox. For if they had done their research, they would've discovered that the mental side of the game is not a strength of the right-hander's.

--Joe Girardi seemed more than happy to point a finger at Brett Gardner for his failure to score from third base on an Alfredo Aceves wild pitch in the third inning. Sure, Gardner did a bad job. But the punishment didn't fit the crime, IMO. I could see how Gardner thought that Aceves' pitch hit Jeter, and there wasn't a great deal of time to recover.

Besides, if Jeter had then delivered a hit, or at least delivered a flyball, then Gardner would have scored. But Jeter hit into a 5-4-3 double play, and all was lost.

--David Ortiz went after Girardi following the game, regarding Girardi's Tuesday night criticism of Ortiz's bat flip. I didn't quite get this whole thing from Girardi's perspective. If you're that miffed by what Ortiz did, then why not make sure that your pitchers get that message across in the form of an inside pitch?

Otherwise, just forget it and focus on getting Big Papi out.

So are the Yankees in crisis once more? I don't see it, and CC Sabathia can restore order with a winning outing tonight against Boston and Josh Beckett, not that such a task is a slam-dunk. 

Ultimately, though, the Yankees are going to have to sort through that list of available starting pitchers, hold their nose and take a plunge on someone. Wait for the prices to go down so that the main form of currency is cash, rather than prospects.

And even then, if Phil Hughes can somehow regain his past velocity, then he could wind up being the Yankees' most important "acquisition."

--Dustin Pedroia will miss tonight's game - if there even is a game; check out the weather - and could miss a month with right knee surgery.

--Over in Milwaukee, Terry Collins continued to speak positively of Jason Bay, who is showing no signs of climbing out of his slump. As David Lennon mentions, perhaps an eye exam would help. How can the Mets not consider absolutely everything at this point?

It's an odd day when two hitting coaches get fired, and that's what happened yesterday in Texas, as Scott Coolbaugh replaced Thad Bosley, and in Florida, as Eduardo Perez replaced John Mallee.

Rangers players seemed pleased by the move, Marins players not so much.

Hitting coach can be a rather dispensable position. They can be convenient scapegoats if a team is underperforming offensively. That's why those who work through the thicket and establish themselves as elite, like the Cubs' Rudy Jaramillo and the Yankees' Kevin Long,  get rewarded with job security and a nice salary.

--I'll check in later from the Stadium.

New York Sports