Posted by: JoeD2133 | April 22, 2008

4/18-20: One and Two

A weekend with the kids in Baltimore… what could be better?

According to the animated statements of Hank Steinbrenner in yesterday’s New York Times, Joba Chamberlain in the starting rotation for the New York Yankees.  After Phil Hughes couldn’t get out of the fifth inning Friday night at Camden Yard, and Ian Kennedy couldn’t get out of the third in the same, beautiful, brick ballpark on Saturday, the faith of the organization as a whole – especially Brian Cashman’s – is suddenly being put to the test.  These two young guns are the same two prospects that Brian would not trade for Johan Santana in the offseason, a deal that Hank was less than casual about wanting to consummate, so here we stand today.

Is anyone the least bit surprised?

Twenty games into the 2008 season, with the Yankees record at 10-10, Boston’s at 12-7, and the team’s collective starting ERA hovering somewhere around 10.00, management is being asked to exercise patience with the enthusiastically proclaimed “future” of the franchise.  They are being asked to stick with the plan, no matter what the outcome.  In other words, they are being asked to act in a very unfamiliar way for the Tampa Faction, and most notably the Steinbrenners, even if it might be very familiar behavior to the majority of other teams in Major League Baseball.

Have a little faith, right?  These kids are exactly that: kids.  They need to learn and grow and mature into Cy Young candidates, and that takes time, persistence, and above all else, that enviable, hard-to-wait-out virtue known as patience.

After all, they did watch Andy Pettitte take a perfect game into the fifth inning on Sunday against the same orange-colored birds from Baltimore, finishing the day with seven strong, veteran innings of work.  In assuming his very familiar role of “stopper”, Andy tutored by example, pitching a gem with only well-located 86 MPH fastballs, diving sliders, and of course, tailing cutters.

You don’t have to be a flame-thrower to be a good pitcher, and Hughes, Kennedy, and maybe even Mussina could stand to take a few notes from Pettitte’s latest outing.

Maybe even Steinbrenner could learn a thing or two from No. 46 as well… you don’t have to spout flames in the newspaper to show that you have passion for your baseball team.  We all know your last name, so dazzle us next time with a few well-located, eloquently spoken words.  A show of patience, possibly.

Location, just like timing for the rest of us, makes all the difference in baseball.

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