FanShot

Not a sure bet, but a glimmer of hope

5

John Danks 2007: 1.54 WHIP, 5.50 ERA, 7.05 K/9 2008: 1.23 WHIP, 3.32 ERA, 7.34 K/9 Hughes 2008: 1.71 WHIP, 6.62 ERA, 6.09 K/9 While there is plenty of blame to go around for the Yanks' failed season, the player who most underperformed my expectations was Phil Hughes. Granted, Jorge Posada was a close second, but at least Jorge managed to be league average in his 168 ABs. Hughes' injuries seemed as baffling as frustrating, and with the injury bug also biting No. 5 ranked prospect Alan Horne and ace CMW, the Yanks just didn't have the depth to overcome the hole in the rotation. Think about it this way: if Hughes makes 15 more starts and goes only 5.1IP he adds 80 innings of work. That would replace Sidney Ponson. But Danks made a big turn in a year, as did Edwin Jackson, Scott Baker, Ervin Santana, and Joe Saunders. One successful young pitcher is the difference between ending the season in September and playing into October.

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