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Pinstripe Pulse: The Pitchers (Edition #5)

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The Yankees' pitching staff continued its late season struggles, posting an ERA of 4.40 that was fueled by a league worst HR/9 rate of 1.81 during the period. The starters, which allowed nearly five runs per nine innings, were the main offenders. In the last 12 games, the Yankees benefited from only four quality starts (two belonging to Phil Hughes) and one outing that went past the seventh inning. In aggregate, the bullpen bounced back to a respectable ERA of 3.31, which ranked in the middle of the A.L. pack. However, three key components, David Robertson, Cody Eppley, and Boone Logan, all struggled at key moments. Ironically, anchoring the bullpen was Joba Chamberlain, who not only threw the most innings in the period, but had the lowest ERA (minimum two innings). Hughes the best starter...Joba one of the best relievers...just how the Yankees drew it up...in 2010!

Starter

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Andy Pettitte

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Weather permitting, this evening, Andy Pettitte will make his first start since breaking his ankle on June 27.

CC Sabathia

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In two key division games, Sabathia allowed nine earned runs in only 13 innings. The big lefty also recorded only 8 strikeouts and surrendered a mid-game lead in each outing.

David Phelps

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Phelps alternated between good and bad starts during the period before settling back into the bullpen to accommodate the return of Pettitte. In his one relief appearance, Phelps threw 2/3 scoreless innings.

Freddy Garcia

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With the return of Ivan Nova, Garcia's days in the rotation were numbered anyway, but two more poor outings in the period expedited that process. In 8 2/3 innings, Garcia allowed 8 earned runs, including three long balls.

Hiroki Kuroda

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Despite pitching to a 5.40 ERA in 18 1/3 innings, Kuroda managed to go 2-1 thanks to some uncharacteristic run support. Adding to the importance of his contribution, both victories came against the Rays.

Ivan Nova

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Nova gave the Yankees a big boost by returning from the DL with a strong outing against the Rays. In six innings, Nova allowed two runs on four hits, while striking out eight.

Phil Hughes

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Hughes won both of his starts during the period, going 13 1/3 innings, while surrendering only 11 hits and two earned runs. Hughes struck out 12 over the span and allowed hitters an OPS of only .564.

Reliever

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Boone Logan

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Logan continues to be used as a specialist, which allowed Girardi to deploy the lefty in nine of the team's 12 games. Unfortunately, the results were subpar as Logan allowed three runs and an 1.014 OPS against in 3 2/3 innings.

Clay Rapada

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Rapada continues to be an effective reliever in small doses. In three appearances during the period, the side arming lefty retired four of five batters faced.

Cody Eppley

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Eppley allowed an earned run in three of his five appearances, covering 4 1/3 innings, but he did strand all three of his inherited runners.

Cory Wade

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Making his second appearance since being recalled from the minors, Wade pitched two scoreless innings in mop-up duty versus the Orioles.

David Robertson

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Robertson was a workhorse during the period, throwing 6 1/3 innings over eight appearances. However, the results were a mixed bag. In six outings, Robertson allowed a combined two hits and no runs, but in the other two, he surrendered six hits and four runs, and was tagged with two key losses.

Derek Lowe

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After a rough time in the prior period, the Yankees dialed back on Lowe's usage. In two low leverage appearances, Lowe was perfect in each inning thrown.

Joba Chamberlain

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In an unexpected turnaround, Chamberlain was one of the Yankees' most valuable relievers during the period. The right hander allowed only one earned run and four hits in 7 1/3 innings over seven appearances. He also struck out 11 and limited hitters to an OPS of .475. His one Achilles heel was allowing four of eight inherited runners to score.

Justin Thomas

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Thomas pitched one scoreless inning in his only appearance.

Rafael Soriano

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Soriano continues to do his best Mariano Rivera impersonation. During the period, the Yankee closer converted all five of his save opportunities and also slammed the door on the Orioles in a non-save situation. The only blemishes for Soriano were two homers allowed, which doubled his season total.

Mariano Rivera

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Rivera is expected to return in 2013.

Note: Current period includes statistics compiled from September 4 to September 17 .

Pinstripe Pulse Pitcher Photo Legend

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Carl Pavano signifies a player who is injured and unable to perform.

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Whitey Ford only makes an appearance when a starting pitcher is performing at an elite level.

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AJ Burnett is used to denote a starter whose recent performance has been difficult to swallow.

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Mariano Rivera is the symbol for a reliever whose recent body of work is worthy of the immortal closer.

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Scott Proctor is used, and perhaps overused, to indicate a reliever who has performed particularly poorly in his recent outings.