Yankees Fans: Do You Trust A.J. Burnett?
NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — Although Russell Martin’s bases-loaded walk in the top of the ninth inning gave the Yankees a 5-4 victory over Tampa Bay on Monday night, starter A.J. Burnett was wild in his 5 1-3 innings.
Sure, New York escaped with a win, but after bad outings by veteran pitchers Bartolo Colon, Freddy Garcia and now Burnett, do the Yankees need to bolster their starting staff?
And let’s not forget about Phil Hughes and his velocity concerns.
“Remember, you don’t have Andy Pettitte this year,” WFAN’s Craig Carton said on Tuesday. “You don’t have a guy you can trust (with) Game 3 on the road (in the playoffs). … Do you understand? Burnett’s gotta be that guy, or you go get a guy.”
“I would think that Brian Cashman will go get a guy regardless,” Boomer Esiason added. “I think it has more to do with Garcia, it has more to do with Colon, it has more to do with (Ivan) Nova.”
Rockies star Ubaldo Jimenez is reportedly on the trading block, though according to WFAN’s Jon Heyman, Colorado’s asking price is way too high for the Yankees’ liking.
If there’s not a deal to be made, the question is: how much do Yankees fans trust their rotation?
“You know, A.J. is our number two guy,” one caller told Boomer & Carton. “But you know we can’t trust him.”
The Rays scored three times in the first inning alone against Burnett. Evan Longoria drove in the first two with a double and Burnett’s throwing error permitted the third run to score.
“That probably had something to do with it,” Burnett said of pitching on eight days’ rest. “But I make no excuses.”
Burnett allowed four runs and eight hits. The right-hander walked six, but the Rays didn’t take full advantage and stranded 10 baserunners through the first six innings.
“I kept my team in it as best I could,” said Burnett.
“We had opportunities to get more runs and we did not do it,” Maddon said.
The game was delayed for 18 minutes with two outs in the top of the fifth inning because a bank of lights lost power at Tropicana Field. The Rays said lightning appeared to strike the domed stadium, causing a brief outage to a cluster of lights along the first base line.
“I was better when the lights went out,” Burnett said. “Maybe that should happen more often.”
Do the Yankees need to make a move? Sound off in the comments below…
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