A.J. Burnett's last game was so bad he couldn't make it out of the second inning. He'll attempt to justify the Yankees keeping him in the rotation as he faces the Orioles on Friday. Baltimore will have Tommy Hunter (2-2, 4.95) on the mound; the teams are supposed to play five games in four days this weekend, which may not be possible with the forecast hurricane.
Discussion of the Day: Not including Thursday's 22-run outburst, what's the best offensive performance you've ever seen from the Yankees? Share your memories in the comments.
1) Wallace Matthews spoke to Andy Pettitte, who does not think he will play again.
Pettitte spent most of a long career with the Yankees, and was considered part of the "Core Four" of home-grown Yankees (Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada and Mariano Rivera) that won five championships with the team. There's no question that Pettitte's durability made him one of the Yankees' most valued players during that time, and that he probably could have still helped the Yankees this season; whether or not he's a Hall of Fame candidate could become an interesting discussion in the next few years.
2) Johnette Howard writes that despite rotation concerns, the Yankees are a pretty good team.
At 78-50, 28 games over .500, the Yankees have the third-best record in all of baseball. That one of the two teams ahead of them happens to be in their same division might seem to lessen the Yankees' success, but it shouldn't; after all, the Yankees' biggest offseason move was to sign a relief pitcher who has spent most of this season on the disabled list. That the Yankees have managed to keep pace with the Red Sox and Phillies while not signing any of last offseason's biggest free agents (Cliff Lee, most notably, but Carl Crawford also comes to mind) is no small accomplishment; that they've been able to do it while Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez have spent large stretches of time on the disabled list and Jorge Posada has hit so poorly he lost his starting job, is a testament to just how well everyone else -- both the home-grown players and the "bargain bin" signings -- has performed in 2011.
3) John Harper writes that the Yankees should consider giving some time off to Bartolo Colon, who has cooled off in the second half.
Colon's second half numbers aren't awful -- certainly not the worst on the team -- but they are considerably worse than those in the first half. Colon has already been more effective than many thought he would be, and that someone who hasn't thrown over 100 major league innings in five seasons might fade down the stretch isn't unexpected. Still, given the uncertainty with the rest of the rotation, the Yankees need Colon to come up big in the playoffs, and if resting him now means that he'll be more effective in October, it's a move the Yankees should make.
4) It was mostly a down day for the farm system.
Triple-A Scranton beat Rochester, 4-1.
Jesus Montero hit two home runs in three at bats, walked once and struck once.
Scott Proctor pitched 1.1 innings of scoreless relief, and struck out two.
Double-A Trenton lost to New Britain, 11-8.
Austin Romine had two hits in five at bats.
For the GCL Yankees, Damaso Marte pitched two thirds of an inning, allowing six earned runs on six hits.