Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for March 20th, 2011

The last two slots in the Yankees’ starting rotation remain up for grabs, but the order of the first three has been officially established.

To the surprise of some, Joe Girardi announced that A.J. Burnett, not Phil Hughes, would follow CC Sabathia in the pecking order. Many have speculated that Girardi’s commitment to Burnett is really about instilling confidence in the enigmatic right hander, but in reality, the decision accurately reflects the current state of the Yankees’ rotation. For better or worse, Burnett is the Yankees’ second best pitcher.

Ten Worst* Seasons by a Yankees Starter, 1961-2010

Player Year ERA+ ERA GS IP W L
Terry Mulholland 1994 71 6.49 19 120.2 6 7
Richard Dotson 1988 80 5.00 29 171 12 9
Mike Kekich 1972 80 3.70 28 175.1 10 13
Scott Sanderson 1992 80 4.93 33 193.1 12 11
Mike Kekich 1971 80 4.07 24 170.1 10 9
Melido Perez 1993 80 5.19 25 163 6 14
Andy Hawkins 1989 81 4.80 34 208.1 15 15
A.J. Burnett 2010 81 5.26 33 186.2 10 15
Ron Guidry 1984 84 4.51 28 195.2 10 11
Rudy May 1981 86 4.14 22 147.2 6 11

*Ranked by ERA+. Includes pitchers with enough innings to qualify for the ERA title.
Source: Baseball-reference.com

Burnett’s 2010 season was historically bad, but it should also be noted that it was a career outlier. His ERA+ of 81 and WAR of 1.3 were both the lowest totals for any season in which he pitched at least 100 innings. Burnett’s next lowest ERA+ in a full season was 104 in 2008 (the same year he won a career high 18 games).  In other words, it would be shortsighted to project Burnett’s 2011 performance based on one extraordinarily poor year. (more…)

Read Full Post »