Sunday, July 18, 2010
Compared with the injury to the Yankees’ starting pitcher on Saturday, Sunday’s mishap was merely mundane. Unlike A. J. Burnett, who cut the palms of his hands when angrily slamming them into a clubhouse door Saturday, Andy Pettitte was merely throwing a pitch when he strained his left groin muscle Sunday.
But while Burnett’s injury probably will not force him to miss a start, Pettitte’s injury could force him onto the disabled list.
Why couldn’t Burnett have strained his groin and Pettitte cut his palms?
Pettitte’s been the Yankees’ best starter this year, so this hurts. It sounds like he could miss up to five weeks, which is not cool. As for who fills his spot, it’ll probably be Dustin Moseley or Sergio Mitre, neither of which excites me much. Until we know how much time Pettitte’s likely to miss, it’s tough to really assess the impact.
Pettitte’s injury put a damper on a solid win. The Yankees were down 3-0 after only ten pitches and with AL All Star Game starter David Price on the mound for Tampa Bay. Luckily for us, the Yankees have Robinson Cano, who put them right back into the game with a two-out, two-run triple in the bottom of the first to cut the deficit to 3-2. The beleaguered Yankee bullpen was able to finish the game after Pettitte left, allowing two runs over the last six innings while their teammates scored seven more. I was happy to see Joe Girardi go right to David Robertson when Pettitte had to leave with two on and a 3-1 count on Kelly Shoppach. At this point, Robertson is probably the best non-Mo reliever in the bullpen (I really don’t give a crap what Joba’s FIP is), and the game had the potential to get ugly right there. I’ll also throw CHP a bone and thank him for a good inning. That makes two good games in his Yankee career I think.
This is a series we have to be happy with, as the Yankees took two of three from their chief AL East rival and opened up a three game lead in the division. In doing so while Boston lost three of four at home against Texas, the Yankees also have managed to pick up a seven game lead on the Red Sox in the loss column. In order for Boston to catch the Yankees now, they have to be seven games better over less than half a season. With eleventy billion aces, that’s certainly plausible, but it’s also somewhat unlikely.
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