New Reality Show: Who Wants To Be A Yankees Pitcher?

It’s spring training. I understand that. But why wasn’t there a single pitcher who could get through an inning without giving up a run to the Reds in the Yankees’ 13-11 loss? Because there wasn’t, that’s why. Not. One. Pitcher.


Don’t these kids work out in the off-season? Don’t they throw the ball around with their dads? Don’t they even try to simulate a real game or would their arms turn to sawdust?
All I know is that the Yankees took a bus load of pitchers to Sarasota and none of them looked ready for prime time.
Aceves: 3 runs.
Albaladejo: 1 run.
Cox: 1 run.
(Yes, that’s Jim Carrey. Cox doesn’t have a photo on the Yankees web site yet, and judging by today’s performance he never will.)
Marte: 2 runs.
Bruney: 1 run.
Garcia: 4 big ones.
Melancon: 1 run.
Again. I realize it’s spring training. Just practice. It doesn’t count. Who cares if the Yankees hurlers are rusty, ironing out the kinks, fine-tuning their stuff? 
Great, but what if I used the same standard on this blog? Should I misspell every other word and forget what commas are for and act as if I’m just practicing? It’s spring training for me too, and yet you don’t hear me whining about being rusty.
So pull it together, pitchers, especially you, Melancon or Melancholy or whatever your name is. Just get batters out, would you? Somebody? Please?
Update: Just taped an interview with MLBlogger Lisa Winston and her hubby Wayne Wilentz for their “Baseball Honeymoon” podcast airing later this week. They asked me to name my top five baseball books and here’s the list I gave them. (No, I didn’t say my own book. I’m not that shameless.)
Ball Four
The Bronx Zoo
The Boys of Summer
Living on the Black
Fear Strikes Out
Anyone else have a top five list?


  1. levelboss

    well, at least one of the presumed five starters didn’t get lit up today.. but it’s still bad when Marte and Bruney get lit up.. Marte i think is gonna be the set-up man to Mo, and Bruney should be one of the bullpen mainstays

    tomorrow Robot Wang takes the mound (i call him ‘Robot’ Wang, because he goes about his business completely stone-faced and mechanically like a robot).. how ironic that he’s gonna face the Astros as that was the last team he saw before hurting his foot last year

  2. Erin Kathleen

    Well, most of these guys aren’t going to be on the roster, anyway, though the rest of the American League would love it if they were. I would be a lot more concerned about how Sabathia, Burnett, and all of the other starters look during spring training. I see it was a pretty close game though, until Garcia came in anyway.

  3. letsgoyankees

    When you made that comment about the blog, I’m probably being naive, but you were joking right? These pitchers will do fine. Melancon is our savior. I know this is really unfair, but he will be the next Joba. I expect it! He will set up for and eventually (in the hopefully VERY distant future) replace Mo!

  4. Jane Heller

    I don’t see Marte setting up for Mo, Levelboss. I know that was a hope last year. But I’d rather see him as a lefty specialist in key situations – if he can get lefties out!

    I wish you were right, Happy, but Bruney and Marte are definites to make the roster, Aceves has a real shot, and Melancon is the boy wonder of the future. They need to shake off the rust!

    Yes, now it’s life without some of our stars, Julia. I hope they enjoy the competition and come back to us healthy.

    It was a close game, Erin. The Reds pitchers weren’t a whole lot better and the wind was blowing out.

    Hey, it was late out here in CA and I needed a post for last night, Jeff. Nothing hits the spot like a good venting.

    Yes, I was joking, Letsgoyankees. Not so sure about Melancon being the next Mo, but if he moves up through the system and has lights-out stuff, I’d be thrilled.

  5. diamonddiva

    What, you don’t like reverse pitcher’s duels? 😉 If it’s any consolation, the Reds’ pitchers gave up even more hits and almost as many runs as Yankee pitchers. And then, of course, it was very windy, so that could be another excuse — er, I mean reason — for the poor performances from the pitchers. Hang in there, it’s still early in spring training. Oh, and LOL at “Melancholy”!

  6. Jane Heller

    You must be happy, Kaybee. Looks like Peavy did well. Remember during the off-season when it seemed like all was lost with the Padres? Maybe they’ll turn out to be the team to beat in the NL West. Who knows?

  7. Jane Heller

    Yes, there’s counseling, Kylie. I’m starting an 800-number hotline for fans who are about to jump off the ledge. Call anytime.

  8. Jane Heller

    Well, they’re doing better in today’s game, Happy – a shutout so far against the Astros. I guess some are more rusty than others.

  9. letsgoyankees

    Jane-Today was an “ugh” game. Started out fine and ended ugly. At least they didn’t lose.
    I’m still standing by Melancon. I don’t know about the next Mo-no one can truly replace Mo’s dominance-, but he could be a lights out closer along the same lines. I hope Gardner wins the CF battle because he’s faster, but Melky had a great game. What are your thoughts?
    Oh, and one more thing. I am in a heated Jeter debate on the pinstriped bible. If you ever go there, chime in. I’d like to know what side you’ll take (you also may notice I’m the one who posts the most there).
    Thanks, like your blog

  10. PAUL

    My list of five favorite baseball books is easy:
    1. Breaking Balls by Paul Lebowitz;
    2. The Prince of New York’s 2007 Baseball Preview by Paul Lebowitz;
    3. The Prince of New York’s 2008 Baseball Guide by Paul Lebowitz;
    4. Paul Lebowitz’s 2009 Baseball Guide by Paul Lebowitz* (*soon to be available);
    5. Confessions of a She-Fan by Jane Heller.



    1. “The Universal Baseball Association Inc.: Henry J. Waugh, Prop.,” Robert Coover
    2. “Pride of the Bimbos,” John Sayles
    3. “The Great American Novel,” Philip Roth
    4. “If I Never Get Back,” Darryl Brock
    5. “Shoeless Joe,” W.P. Kinsella

    These are novels. Your book, of course, would top the non-fiction charts.

    el duque

  12. Jane Heller

    Thanks, Julia. As always, you’re the harbinger of good news. Much appreciated.

    An “ugh” game, Letsgoyankees? Just read about it and it does sound like I’d be going, “UGH.” We had it won, only to have the pitching fail us. Melky did have a great game, but I still like Gardner in CF because of his speed. I haven’t had a chance to weigh in on the Jeter debate you mentioned, but I’ll take a look.

    It’s been stressful all right, Zoe. The Yankees have let the Mets have a normal ST without any drama. You owe us!

    Paul, I’m honored that you included me on your list of books by you. LOL. Read his entire oeuvre, everybody!

    Duque, I didn’t know about the John Sayles novel. I love his stuff. Wish I had a copy for my flight to FL.

    Same with your fave, Sarah. Very provocative and intriguing title. Will definitely check it out.

    I know, Gomets. Scary, right?

  13. jonnnnnn

    I wouldn’t be too concerned about that lineup of pitchers today, I mean only a couple of those guys are big league players. Damaso Marte has been kind of a letdown over there in New York though, huh? That’s too bad, the guys got mad potential and really showed signs of greatness in Pittsburgh.

    The Yankees staff is gonna be solely on Sabathia and the starters, and they’ve got enough in that major league bullpen to hold it together, I wouldn’t worry about what happened yesterday.

  14. Jane Heller

    You’re so sane and sensible, eatsleepmlb. I know you’re right. It’s just that when they all get lit up, I get lit up!

  15. mlbtribefan


    I understand you want to win. Every fan wants their team to win. However in Spring Training, let us remember to want our teams to build health and depth. So your pitchers today all gave up runs. I know it was UGLY! Spring training is ugly. Remember all your pitchers are still healthy and perhaps one or two of them can fill in if another pitcher gets hurt.

  16. raysrenegade

    The first week of Spring Training can be a pain in the $%^# because you know that the minor league guys will stink up the place sometimes………..well, usually.

    The only good thing about them even hitting the mound is to weed out the straglers who might not be ” Yankee” potential guys in the future. But then again, they can make you reach for the antacid faster than a guy at a Jalapeno eating contest.

    Best thinbg is that within the next 5 days, the managers will get real and give the front line guys a chance to stretch it out before the season is upon us. But for the next few days, we will have to again stomach some of the baseball that would choke a Seattle Mariner’s fan.

    Rays Renegade

  17. Jane Heller

    Aaron, good point about the pitchers’ health. Albaladejo injured himself in that game, but I don’t think it’s anything serious.

    I like your take as usual, Renegade. Part of the spring training ritual is, indeed, for weeding out stragglers. “Choke a Seattle Mariner’s fan?” Interesting turn of phrase. Which reminds me: Do we have any Mariners fans on MLBlogs? We must flush them out!

  18. raysrenegade

    I know of a few of them.
    I was when I was stationed out there for my job in 2007. I supported the home team, but yearned for some Tampa Bay cooking.

    I think they are going to be better than the current predictions. If Bedard has a rebound year, they might be closer to .500 than most people imagine.

    4 days until Friday’s book signing in Carrolwood.

    Rays Renegade

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