Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Jobber in the Bullpen??

Francesa is on his Jobber in the Pen debate. It is getting so tiring. The guy has a repertoire of four pitches and is only 23 years old. You have to look long-term for the team and if you put Joba back in the pen this early, you are basically are either keeping him there long-term or starting the process all over again for him building up his innings.

So the question is this: Would you rather have a guy with Joba's stuff pitching every 5 days for the team or in the bullpen where he may only pitch once or twice a week for a few innings (based on if the games are close and if the team is winning)?


Kyle said...

It's a good debate actually. The debate changes when it's Joba as a closer rather than a middle reliever.

Right now Joba is 2-1 with a 3.97 era in 9 starts. Lots of no decisions, but then you see that he's pitched 45.1 innings in those 9 starts. That's barely over 5 innings a start.

In fact, Joba has only had 1 start all season where he has gone over 6 innings. Also, he's gone less than 5 innings in 3 of his 9 starts.

Joba's WHIP is 1.57. He's given up 46 hits and 25 walks.

It seems like Joba's struggling early in game might be due to him pacing himself.

I would think that all you have to do is be patient vs Joba. Even if Joba shuts down a team for 4 or 5 innings so what. The pen has to come in and pitch half the game. No pen is going to look good when they're pitching half the game.

Now that said, I think right now you have to see if Joba can be a starter. Joba's a reliever for good if he goes back to the pen (unless we're talking late in the year or playoffs due to innings limit or not needing a 5th starter in the playoffs).

Joba may very well be the replacement of Rivera in 2011, but in 2009, they gotta see if Joba can be a starter.

Also one other point, I think Joba's era is really misleading due to his low innings pitched. He's never pitching late into games. He doesn't have to battle through anything or grind through an inning. He's taken out before that happens.

The Commish! said...

Good points Kyle. I often don't agree with Mike but I definitely agree with him on Joba being moved to the bullpen.

Mike was saying how Goose Gossage used to go so hard he would run out of gas in the third inning.

I think Joba is an intense guy and I like that about him but he definitely needs to pace himself better so that he can last longer into games and give the bullpen a rest if he is going to remain a starter.

He does have 4 good pitches which is more than some other starters in MLB and he can mix them up to fool hitters. He doesn't always have to throw the heat.

Mike was saying if Joba came up now, everyone would go, oh this guy is good but not like the buzz that surrounded him 2 years ago when he was the set-up man to

Thinking back, it is pretty amazing the buzz that surrounded Joba and he was nearly unhittable but obviously the Yankees capitilized with the Joba Rules shirt although not sure if they came out with that first.

I'm on the side of Joba being a closer because I think the Yanks rotation with Sabathia, Burnett, Wang, Pettite, Hughes is pretty solid. Also, they always have Ian Kennedy down in Triple A I believe if one of the starters gets hurt or struggles.

As a reliever, you don't need 4 pitches to get the job done. Look at Mo and how successful he's done with the cutter. Every hitter knows it's coming and still can't hit it.

If Bruney is out for the year, then I feel really confident with a 8th-9th inning team of Joba and Mo.

The other reason I'd like to see Joba as a reliever is that as much as I love Mo and he is still in ridiculous shape, I'd like to see Joba as the eventual closer for this team.

Although with someone like Mo and Jeter, you let them go out when they want to.

It'd be interesting if George was still George, what he would think.

Al Leiter's Bullpen Catcher said...

Bruno: To start, Kennedy had an aneurysm under his armpit and I think he is going to be out for a significant amount of time. Given that, he is not going to be an option for the Yankees if something does happened to one of their starters.

The biggest thing I cant stand about Francesa is how he keeps saying Joba isnt a starter. I don't kjnow what planet Mike is on, but Joba WAS a starter in the minor leagues. So the notion that he never was a starter is completely ridiculous.

The guy has 4 pitches and has the ability to be great. He is only 23 years old and is still growing. It is too early to make a determination that he isnt any good. There is a reason why most starters make more than relief pitchers.

With that said, the Yankees do need to find someone decent to put in their pen. I loved having Joba coming out in the 8th inning as he was successful and helped build a bridge to Mariano. It is important to note though that Melancon has the potention to be this go to guy in the future.

Looking long-term I think it is better to have Joba in the rotation. Next year you probably wont have Pettitte and you are going to need a guy like Joba in your rotation. If you limit his innings and throw him in the pen too early, you are starting the process of building his innings up all over again.

Al Leiter's Bullpen Catcher said...

kyle and bruno- i wanted to thank you both for your comments. I think its an interesting debate and I love seeing the opinions that other people have.

Al Leiter's Bullpen Catcher said...

Sorry I said bruno when it was really the commish! my bad :(

Bruno Van Rottweiler said...

Funny, I was reading the blog and saw my name and said, I never said anything about Kennedy! It's all good. Joba should be in the starting rotation. As I've said before Cahsman made a mistake in not grooming the heir apparent years ago to Mariano AND now this dilemma exists. Yeas, the bridge to mariano is not very good, but the Yankees can't jerk Joba around left and right. Long term ,he has the potential to be great as a starter, I say leave him there. Francesa musing's on Joba are annoying quite frankly. He gave some weak stats to back up his point that he belongs in the pen..bad job by Mike. What makes him think that Joba will revert back to that reliever mode so soon?