Thursday, April 24, 2008

Mussina Showing Trade Value?

The Yanks won 6-4 last night, beating the Chicago White Sox with the help of a good outing by Mike Mussina. Moose toughed out 7 innings, throwing 101 pitches, 66 for strikes. He gave up 4 hits, 2 runs, walked 1 and struck out 3. Mussina got worked deep into counts a few times, but came out and challenged some hitters early, getting ahead on the count and putting himself in the driver's seat. I'm wondering if this very nice performance will give Mussina some trade value, enticing some poor unsuspecting team to pick up the washed up veteran?

The bullpen had some troubles, apparently stunned at not having to come in early with Mussina on the mound. LaTroy Hawkins got the first batter out then couldn't find the plate with his fastball and walked the second batter. Hawkins then gave up a single to Orlando Cabrera and was pulled as Girardi brought in Billy Traber to face the left handed Jim Thome, who lit up Traber with a ground ball single to right. OK, not really, Traber did a fine job and the play was botched by the defensively inept Giambi. The official scorers should credit that earned run to Giambi rather than Yankee pitcers. Having seen enough and with the right handed Konerko coming to the plate, Girardi called for Mo. Rivera allowed one run to score on a sacrifice fly and quickly got the third out by getting Dye to pop one up. Mariano made quick work of three batters in the ninth to finish the game.

Mariano Rivera is on a tear this year. He had me worried at the start of the season last year, but this season, he is an absolute machine.

Guys like Hawkins can't be relied on to reliably get people out in pressure situations. If Girardi left him in, he may have ended up retiring the side without letting a run score, but you'd like to have one or two relievers who can be counted on to get a particular batter out. Hawkins and Traber didn't deliver this time.

Jorge Posada went 4 for 5 and there were no stolen base attempts. As a team the Yankees hit well, but I don't like the 11 LOB. Johnny Damon continues to deliver in the clutch, knocking in 2 runs.

A good win for the Yanks, an encouraging outing from Mussina and some offensive production. If only we could get this every game...

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