Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Offense Lets Hughes Down

Phil Hughes certainly pitched well enough for the third straight time despite being taken out early because of a long rain delay but his offense was simply unable to scratch anything together against Jeremy Guthrie and the bullpen. Guthrie has been a marginal pitcher in his career, most recently playing for Baltimore before getting traded and signing a long term deal with the Royals. Guthrie has the potential to win about 11-13 games in a season but he has an extremely high ERA and he often gives up too much for his offense to come back and get into the game. Tonight however, Guthrie pitched his way to a well-deserving victory. He went 6.2 inning, allowing only a solo home run to a suddenly hot Lyle Overbay. Other than that, the Yankees did not really even threaten against Guthrie, a far cry from when he was with Baltimore. Hughes allowed only two runs in four innings before the skies opened and rain began to fall. He didn't walk a batter and struck out two in his short start. Adam Warren took over for Hughes, and he went 3.2 innings, allowing only one run on three hits and two walks. It was not the sharpest performance by Warren but he isn't seeing consistent playing time which may contribute to him being rusty at times. The Yankees are wasting Adam Warran by having him mop up. They should consider him in their long term plans as a starting pitcher. He throws strikes and is able to buckle down in tough situations.

The Yankees offense was nowhere to be found tonight. They made a brief appearance in the seventh inning and in the ninth but other than in those innings, the offense was off having drinks in Manhattan. The team went 1-7 with runners in scoring position and stranded ten men on base. This was a 3-1 game for a long time, meaning the Yankees had ample opportunity to close the gap and score some runs for one of their relievers to pick up a win. Getting beat by this Royals team is not the way the Yankees want to begin a series after their brutal loss to the Orioles yesterday. The Yankees had the tying run at the plate in the ninth inning with the bases loaded and all of the batters went down on strikes until Almonte was the final victim to lose the game.

CC Sabathia will meet with James Shields as an old time AL East matchup will once again be front and center. Neither pitcher is having a particularly good season by their standards, so it should call for an interesting game. Usually when these pitching matchups are hyped the game ends with a score of 7-5 or some other high scoring number.

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