October 24, 2009

Phil Hughes can no longer be trusted

Remember the guy who was lights out in the eighth inning during the second half of the season? That was the most dominant looking setup man the Yankees have had since Joba Chamberlain of 2007. But that Phil Hughes has left the Yankees recently, and looks like the next Brian Bruney.

Hughes has pitched in six of eight postseason games this year, and he has allowed at least one hit in all appearances. Five of those appearances were less than three outs long, and he has given up runs in tight games twice.

When he was going best, he pitched 20 consecutive innings of shutout ball. In September, he blew three leads, and he blew another one in Game 5.

The way I see it, you have to go with the hot hand in the postseason. And that is David Robertson these days. In his last nine innings pitched, he’s allowed one meaningless run. He also looks the best with plenty of strikeouts and limited walks.

Bottom line, if the Yankees have a one-run lead in the seventh inning tonight, I’m going Robertson, then Mariano Rivera for two. I’ll save Hughes and Chamberlain before the seventh, or for extra innings.

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