Phil Hughes is moving up in the Yankee record book, but not in a way he wants.
With today’s home run by Angels’ third-baseman Chris Nelson, Hughes is now tied with Allie Reynolds for 15th place for most career home runs allowed by a Yankee pitcher. It took Reynolds 1,700 innings to give up 111 home runs, while it has taken Hughes only 760 innings. If he continues at this pace, Hughes may enter free agency in the Yankees' top 10 for homers allowed, passing Catfish Hunter (113), Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez (114), Eddie Lopat (116), Roger Clemens (116) and Bob Turley (118).
Hughes’ problems with the long ball are well-documented but the statistics are grim.
This year, he has given up 23 home runs in 125 innings. This works out to 1.7 homers per nine innings. His 58 home runs over the last two seasons are the most in the majors, one more than runner-up Ervin Santana of Kansas City. When he gave him his 100th home run to Boston’s Mike Napoli last June 1st, he reached the 100-HR mark in fewer innings than any other pitcher in Yankee history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Since the beginning of last season, he has given up 12 home runs after getting to an 0-2 count, the most in the majors and three more than runner-up Cliff Lee of Philadelphia. Pitching in Yankee Stadium has not helped. This year, 17 of his 23 homers were hit in the Bronx.
For the record, the top 10 Yankee pitchers on the homers-allowed list are: Andy Pettitte (232), Whitey Ford (228), Ron Guidry (226), Red Ruffing (200), Mel Stottlemyre (171), Mike Mussina (166), Fritz Peterson (139), Lefty Gomez (138), Ralph Terry (133), and Bob Turley (118). The major-league career leader for home runs allowed is Jamie Moyer (511).