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Now is not the time to start overworking David Robertson

Let's not kill the closer

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Last night David Robertson pitched in his third game in a row, something Joe Girardi has not allowed him to do all season. Robertson recently complained about shoulder fatigue and general soreness, however he was still brought in and proceeded to pitch poorly. Regardless of whether or not last night's struggles stemmed from fatigue, the Yankees should not be overworking David Robertson at this point in the season.

It's possible that Joe Girardi decided to go with Robertson last night in order to avoid having to put Adam Warren in to finish off the game again. If that were the case, why not use Shawn Kelley or let Dellin Betances pitch two innings? For a manager as meticulous and careful as Girardi is, especially with resting his relievers, it seems like an odd time to start ignoring his own rules. The Yankees could have decided that soon-to-be free agent David Robertson can now be sent out as fodder or maybe this is Joe's idea of going into "win-now mode." Whatever the reason is, it's the wrong reason.

First of all, the Yankees shouldn't be deciding in mid-September that they're better off without their closer, because they're not. And if they did decide this already, they should have tried to trade him while they could get something for him. If this is all Girardi's doing, he needs to realize that this team isn't going to make the playoffs and instead of making a big show by pulling out all the stops, he needs to push the brakes. Instead of pushing Robertson hard, use him less, pitch him every few days if you want to, but don't put strain on him. If the team actually had a shot then it would make sense to push everyone, not just the closer, but it's too little too late now.

Even if the Yankees ultimately decide not to bring their closer back, they shouldn't be running him ragged out there in the next few weeks. Not only is it not fair to him, but it also narrows their options. For all we know, Betances could get hurt in the offseason, and if the Yankees already damaged Robertson's arm at that point then the team is in trouble. They're better off just shutting him down for the next few days, give him some rest and make sure he's not overworked because the Yankees are better off with him than without him and everyone is better off with a healthy D-Rob than a hurt one.