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…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • Brian

    The Yankees need to make a move. They have a legit ace in Sabathia, but after that it is a bunch of #3 and 4 starters, no real #2. Ideally, Burnett is a #4 starter. You get a gem out of him every now and then, but you cannot rely on him if you are tied or down in a playoff series. I’d trust Colon or even Nova over Burnett in a big spot.

  • Paul D


  • dabooch

    AJ is in a long line of lineage of Yankee hired guns that shoot blanks on the big stage. Mrs. Smith wouldn’t even hire him on the assembly line. AJ is as a fickle as a cat, as you comb him he puers, but he could turn as bad as a Los Vegas cat within a second Trust AJ in game 3 maybe, with a one inch leash.

  • Lauren

    Throw a pie in face face, and get rid of him. What a complete waste of money!!

  • robert

    Are you kidding me? Trust him? No freaking way!

  • Ricky

    AJ should finish his contract parking cars at Yankee stadium.

  • Joe

    They should bring Nova back up. I’ve never trusted AJ and never will. His record over the years stands for what it is and only a team like the Yankees would spend millions on a guy like this. As for the others, Hughes is a question mark….Colon and Garcia should do okay.

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