March 24, 2009

With Igawa cut, what will the Yanks' pen be in '09?

Kei Igawa was cut yesterday by the Yankees after he gave up his first one in all spring two days ago.  If you count the three shut-out innings he pitched against team Canada, he's only allowed one run over 15 1/3 frames this spring.

Now that Igawa is gone, the Yankees have narrowed down the competition for the long-relief role to Alfredo Aceves, Dan Giese and Brett Tomko.

Judging by the numbers, Tomko has the job in the bag.  However, my gut feeling is that the Yankees will still go with Aceves, despite his ERA being 4.97 in 12 2/3 innings this spring.

Now, the Yankees have eleven relief pitchers competing for I would guess seven spots, and only Mariano Rivera, Damaso Marte and Brian Bruney are the guarantees.  The rest of the bullpen is a crapshoot.  Pick four of the pitchers below, but one must be one of the bolded names at the bottom.

Phil Coke
Jonathan Albaladejo
Edwar Ramirez
David Robertson
Jose Veras
Alfredo Aceves
Brett Tomko
Dan Giese

I'm going with Coke, Veras, Ramirez and Aceves.  Coke was flat out filthy with the Yanks last season in 12 games (0.61 ERA).  Veras has always been fairly decent when he's healthy.  And Ramirez has that tantalizing changeup that has put up huge strikeout numbers for him.


Anonymous said...

I'd have to agree with you on this one. They're definitely going to take Coke and Edwar, and I think they would take Veras.

However, why cant the yanks convert Kennedy into a long relief guy?

Lenny Neslin said...

Well, I think Kennedy still has a chance to be a long relief guy, just not in the beginning of the season. I think the Yankees want to see how Hughes, Kennedy and now Igawa do in the minors as starters.

Anonymous said...

I think they're factoring in more than the spring statistics. They know how these guys are throwing the ball, to whom they've been throwing it, etc. I think also they don't trust Igawa after what happened last year. They like the improvement but want to bring him along slowly. It's the same story with Huges.

Anonymous said...

PS: That last comment is from a different "anonymous" than the first one!

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