It was also a really mixed bag for the Yankees on the pitching front in August. Two or three starters were effective but others particularly Ivan Nova were well below expectations. Let’s see who did what:
|New York Yankees – Pitching – Month – August|
David Robertson. Robertson appeared in more games in August than any other pitcher on the Yankees staff. There was talk that the Yankees might consider him as a closer during Rivera’s prolonged absence but if this was ever a question, it is one that has longtime passed the discussion point. Robertson is the guy who gets the Yankees from a good start to Soriano in the way that Rivera used to do for Wetteland in the summer of 1996 (ah, now there was a vintage!) and in the way that he, himself, has done to get the team to Rivera prior to the injury. In August’s 13 appearances, he gave up 10 hits and three runs. This wasn’t quite his best but in the circumstances it will more than do.
Rafael Soriano. Soriano had a very similar record to Robertson in August and once more we can say that this was more than adequate. It will be interesting to see what his role will be should Mariano Rivera be fit enough to return to the roster in 2013. His 11 appearances brought 8 saves and an ERA which was secondly only to Robertson in the Yankees’ August games.
Hiroki Kuroda. In a rickety starting rotation, Kuroda has proved more valuable than the Yankees could have hoped or than they ever thought they needed him to be. In August, he was unlucky. His 2.35 ERA delivered up only two wins and also brought him three losses. He lacked run support for he gave fine performances in most of his 6 August starts.
CC Sabathia. Sabathia’s ERA was not as good as Kuroda’s and he produced only 4 starts. Despite this he came through with more wins and fewer losses. Sabathia has been less effective than the Yankees might have hoped but in a season where the starting rotation has fallen apart, he has been better than most of the rotation and less prone to injury.
Ryota Igarashi. Igarashi was another of the Yankees surprising signings and nothing good came from his brief time in the Bronx. He made one relief appearance in August and was simply awful. He pitched two innings giving up three runs.
Joba Chamberlain. Chamberlain? Was he rushed back from injury? I guess we’ll never know but whether fully fit or not he has been less than the Yankees could have hoped for in their worse scenario. 7 and a 1/3 innings in 8 appearances and 7 runs given up. He allowed 20 men on base (mostly hits but a few walks). His future in the major leagues is shrouded in questions unless the Yankees did rush him back and if he, consequently, will have more to offer in 2013.
Derek Lowe. Longtime journeyman ends up at the Yankees and has as been true throughout his career, he is consistent in his inconsistency. His Yankees debut was outstanding, most of his other appearances in the Bronx pinstripes have been much, much less successful.
Ivan Nova. Nova has gone from being the Yankees most ordinary starter to their best to their worst and he has completed that journey several times this season alone. August was a bad month for him. He achieved only 4 starts and his ERA for the month topped 7. His future in New York has as many question-marks as Joba’s.
Cody Eppley. Eppley surprised everybody by continuing to deliver as a reliever whilst more obvious candidates like Cory Wade fell apart and headed for wherever Scranton are playing their home games at that moment. Just when he became consistent enough for the Yankees to depend upon, he began to fall apart and produced a 5.40 ERA for August and put 2 men on base in every innings he pitched.
David Phelps. Phelps doesn’t look like a regular starter and the Yankees don’t need a long reliever whilst ever they have other candidates for that role like the much older, more-experienced Garcia. The surprise is watching the game and trying to guess whether Phelps is going to be effective and where he will be in 2013 if he continues to be so indifferent and to have so little dominance.
Phil Hughes. 6 starts in August means that Hughes was the only player except Kuroda to be in the rotation each time through in August. Three wins, three losses. Averaging 6 innings (nearly) a start. In the past, he has either been plain bad or really good. In 2012, he has little to offer except his inconsistency – which is better than we ever got in 2011 but much less than hoped for.
Freddy Garcia. With Pettitte injured and Phelps sometimes needed in long relief, Garcia got another chance as a starter in August. That’s surprising. More surprising his five starts gave the Yankees three wins and two no decisions. For someone who looked like he was going to be released in May, producing that in August is quite something.