Friday, July 31, 2009

Game 103: After The Gold Rush

The trade deadline came and went for the Yankees without much action. They traded for Eric Hinkse a while back, Jason Hirsh a couple days ago and picked up Jerry Hairston, Jr. today. But I think most fans were holding out hope that they could snag a solid reliever or back end starter as 4:00 came and went. Alas, they did not and will have to see who passes through waivers before they made a deal.

The White Sox on the other hand, came up with what was easily the most surprising deal of the trade deadline. They once again dealt for Jake Peavy, but this time he approved it. He is currently on the DL, but as long as both teams are okay with that and he passes a physical, it's fair game. Peavy is rehabbing an ankle injury and apparently won't be back until August 15th at the very earliest.

It came at a fairly significant cost, however. Part of the package was tonight's starter for the Sox, Clayton Richard. The 25 year old lefty had a 5.14 ERA in 136 2/3 Big Leauge IP, but his minor league numbers are pretty solid. In addition, his last two starts were phenomenal, both consisting of 8 innings of one run ball. Perhaps the Padres were intrigued by his recent dominance and that's what sparked the negotiations?

Instead of Richard, D.J. Carrasco will go for the Sox. He's made 34 appearances this year, none of them starts, and the longest was 3 2/3 innings on July 19 against the Orioles in mop-up duty. He made 20 starts for the Royals in 2005 and pitched to an ERA slightly below league average (92 OPS+). The Sox are throwing him out there for lack of a better option and the fact he pitched three nights ago means that he's probably on a fairly limited pitch count. It would seem their underbelly is exposed and it would be a good time for the Yanks' bats to strike.

The Bombers send their own liability to the mound tonight. Sergio Mitre has been fairly serviceable so far in his two starts, lasting 5 2/3 and giving up 3R in his first, while following a 4 run first inning in his second outing with 4 scoreless ones. Both of those gamed ended up in the win column, so I guess that means he was good enough, right?

Barring the acquisition of a player who passes through waivers, this is the team that the Yankees are working with for the rest of the year. Mark Teixeira thinks that's good enough to win with. A lot of that hinges on Mitre's ability to put together respectable starts. If he can hold a spot in the rotation, it will greatly temper the need for the Yanks to start pulling their bullpen apart to patch up the rotation.

Here we are, Fackers, coming around the back stretch. The Yanks struck it rich in July, going 18-8 so far. Let's close out the best month of the season in style.

I was lying in a burned out basement,
With the full moon in my eyes.
I was hoping for replacement,
When the sun burst through the sky.

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