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Tag:A.J. Burnett
Posted on: October 2, 2010 2:13 pm
 

Burnett pitching for playoff spot?

A.J. Burnett
A.J. Burnett has got to be feeling playoff-type pressure in anticipation of his start tonight -- and if he doesn't respond well, it might be as close as he gets to the real thing.

Joe Girardi isn't saying it straight up, but he can't put Burnett on the mound in the playoffs if he goes out tonight and puts up another outing like his last (2 1/3 innings, seven runs). Burnett has won just once in 11 starts since August 2, with an ERA of almost 7.

The Yankees will throw CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte and Phil Hughes in the first round, but could make due with three starters in the five-game series. A seven-game second round might be another story. Is Burnett (10-15, 5.33 ERA) in danger of playing himself out of the postseason scenarios?

"I would think not; then again, I've given a lot of reasons to think so," Burnett told the New York Daily News. "I'm not going to look at it that way because I think that would put added pressure on myself. My goal is to come out and feel more like A.J. than I have in a year and a half."

Girardi said it's not as cut and dried as Burnett pitching for a rotation spot tonight, but obviously it's going to matter whether the Yankees see what fans call "the good A.J." or "the bad A.J." with the postseason looming.


"My biggest concern is that he pitches well," Girardi said. "Then we can talk about all those things. I'm not looking at it like that."

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .
Posted on: September 29, 2010 7:53 pm
 

Yankees want to win division

Joe Girardi At one point, the Yankees said they weren't worried about winning the American League East title -- instead, they just wanted to make the playoffs.

Hours after clinching a postseason spot, manager Joe Girardi changed course, rolling out a lineup full of regulars, minus Jorge Posada, Curtis Granderson and Brett Gardner.

"You see our lineup," Girardi told reporters, including the Star-Ledger 's Marc Carig . "We're playing to win this division. We'll be smart about it, but we're still playing to win this division."

The Yankees are a half-game behind the Rays, who finish their home schedule tonight against the Orioles before heading to Kansas City for four games.

In that push to win the division, Girardi announced Andy Pettitte would start Friday in Boston, followed by A.J. Burnett on Saturday, but didn't announce a starter for Sunday's season-finale.

If the Yankees don't win the division, they'll play the Twins in the first round. If they win the division, they'd play the Rangers.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Posted on: September 18, 2010 12:00 am
 

Burnett mum on black eye

A.J. Burnett A.J. Burnett showed up in the clubhouse before his start at Camden Yards with a bright black eye. After getting the no-decision following a three-run, six-hit performance in seven innings, Burnett wasn't in the mood to talk about his shiner.

"There's more important things going on than my eye," Burnett told reporters, according to the Star-Ledger 's Marc Carig .

Burnett said the eye didn't affect his vision on the mound. The only hint he'd give about his eye is that it was not baseball related.

"I'm good," he said.

The Yankees trailed 3-1 when Burnett left. Alex Rodriguez gave the team the victory with at two-out, three-run homer in the ninth inning.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Category: MLB
Posted on: August 28, 2010 12:19 am
Edited on: August 28, 2010 8:03 pm
 

Burnett's spot in Yanks rotation in jeopardy

A.J. Burnett The Yankees watched Andy Pettitte take a step toward the team's rotation before Friday's game in Chicago and then watched A.J. Burnett take the first step out of the rotation in a 9-4 loss to the White Sox.

Burnett -- in the second year of a five-year, $82.5 million contract -- was plastered for nine runs (eight earned) in 3 1/3 innings against the White Sox, allowing eight hits, walking three and striking out three. He dropped to 9-12 with a 5.17 ERA.

After the game, Yankees manager Joe Girardi was asked about Burnett and didn't quite sing his praises:

"We'll evaluate after this weekend where we are and what we need to do," Girardi said, according to Marc Craig of the Star-Ledger . "Take it the way you want to take it… we'll do what we have to do."

Burnett allowed six runs to the lowly Mariners in his last start and also had an eight-run outing against the Blue Jays on Aug. 2. He's also had a complete game loss this month, dropping a 1-0 decision to Kansas City two starts ago.

"It's the same as Groundhog Day again," Burnett said. "It's the same situation."

In five of his 26 starts this season, he hasn't allowed an earned run. But in nine he's allowed six or more earned runs. It's easy to forget Burnett's 34 -- his talent and inconsistency are always reminiscent of a younger pitcher, but it's his inconsistency that shines a light on his talent. Burnett has such talent that he keeps getting chances. His powerful right arm is why the Blue Jays and the Yankees have both showered him with large contracts he has never quite lived up to.

The Yankees could move Javier Vazquez back into the rotation for Burnett. Vazquez (9-9, 4.96) was moved to long relief last week following his three-inning, four-run outing against the Mariners. He was replaced in the rotation by rookie Ivan Nova.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .


Posted on: August 27, 2010 5:31 pm
 

No trouble for Pettitte in bullpen session

Andy Pettitte Andy Pettitte threw 25 pitches in Chicago before the Yankees' game with the White Sox on Friday and according to multiple tweets, he said he felt good about the outing.

Pettitte also said he'd had trouble sleeping in anticipation of today's bullpen session -- Joe Girardi may have had similar feelings.

Pettitte had been shut down the last 10 days after he aggravated a groin strain in a simulated game on Aug. 13. He hasn't pitched since leaving the game on July 18 against the Rays after 2 1/3 innings.

"It was good," Pettitte said (via Twiter from the New York Daily News ' Mark Feinsand). "I didn't have any discomfort at all."

Still, the New York Times ' Ben Shpigel reports (via Twitter ) Pettitte's 25 pitches were "not at full intensity."

Pettitte's return would be a boon to the Yankees for the postseason. Even if today's results don't indicate he will be back in the immediate future, the fact there was no setback was a huge positive for Pettitte and his team.

While there were talks of pitching abundance and a trade of Javier Vazquez leading up to the trade deadline, now it seems the rotation's only sure spot is at the top with CC Sabathia. After that, Phil Hughes is on a pitch limit and slowed from his fast start. A.J. Burnett has been A.J. Burnett -- wildly inconsistent, and Ivan Nova has replaced Vazquez in the rotation.

You can believe the Yankees would love to have Pettitte available down the stretch and in the playoffs. And for now, the lack of bad news is as good as good news.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .


Posted on: July 19, 2010 1:21 pm
Edited on: July 19, 2010 4:16 pm
 

Trade deadline buyer: New York Yankees

As the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline looms, the CBS Facts & Rumors team will look at the biggest players leading up to the deadline. This week we'll look at the teams who will be talked about the most; next week will be the players who might be moved.

Every transaction talk, be it trades or free agents, seems to start with the Yankees and this time is no different.

Brian Cashman Record: 58-33, three games ahead of the Rays and 6 1/2 in front of the Red Sox.
GM: Brian Cashman
Expectations: Anything short of another World Series title is failure, plain and simple.
Payroll status: Not that it matters, the Yankees had an opening day payroll of more than $213 million and already have more than $144 million on the books for 2011.

What they need

Starting pitcher: With Andy Pettitte on the disabled list and A.J. Burnett's recent hissy fit, the Yankees suddenly look to need at least one starter. Until now, the opening day rotation of CC Sabathia, Pettitte, Burnett, Javier Vazquez and Phil Hughes had started all but two of their games. That could be matched this week alone. The team may also be wary of letting Hughes' innings add up through a pennant race and the playoffs. Sergio Mitre is scheduled to start in Pettitte's place, but until now, he's been more successful as a reliever than a starter.

Bullpen help: Starting pitching isn't the only pitching concern the Yankees have as Joba Chamberlain's days as the bridge to Mariano Rivera may be numbered, and it's not as if Chan Ho Park is going to step up and replace him.

Damaso Marte was placed on the disabled list this weekend with Boone Logan called up as the team's only left-handed reliever.

Big bat: Marcus Thames has been better than expected as the Yankees designated hitter, hitting .287/.396/.437 with three homers and 13 RBI in 87 at-bats, but he's hardly a difference-maker. This spot -- especially if Jorge Posada is healthy enough not to need a DH safety net -- could be upgraded, especially if that upgrade could be a spot starter in the outfield.

Bench help: After the regulars, the Yankees feature the likes of Ramiro Pena and Colin Curtis. The team could certainly upgrade its depth in both the infield and the outfield.

Who may fit

Ted Lilly Starting pitcher: Cliff Lee would have been a great fit, but he's gone. Lee was the marquee name available and there's a decided step down after the newest Texas Ranger. Other starters out there are Ted Lilly, Jake Westbrook, Brett Myers, Roy Oswalt, Dan Haren and maybe even someone like Brian Bannister.

Reliever: There are stop-gap attempts like David Aardsma and Leo Nunez, or the Yankees could go for the kill with someone like Royals closer Joakim Soria. Soria is under club control until 2014, so it would take more than just cash, but also top-flight prospects to get the Royals closer and team him with Rivera to make a formidable back of the bullpen.

Other, less expensive, fits could be either of the Blue Jays pair of relievers, Scott Downs or Jason Frasor.

Bat: Again, going for the kill would be Adam Dunn. Dunn in new Yankee Stadium would be a marriage made in heaven. Dunn doesn't want to DH and he doesn't really have any other value, but he would flourish both in the American League and in pinstripes. Still, the Yankees may not want to give up too much for a player they can just buy in the offseason.

If the Yankees can find a top-end starter, they could send Vazquez to Philadelphia for Jayson Werth. David DeJesus would upgrade the outfield, as well.

Bench help:
Wes Helms and Ty Wigginton are corner possibilities and Wigginton can play second, as well. Xavier Nady and Austin Kearns are possible outfield bats that may not be big, but could work for the Yankees.

Trade chips

Jesus Montero Catching prospect Jesus Montero was reportedly only available for Lee, however the almighty dollar is always available. Any team looking to clear cash off the bottom line will talk to the Yankees, who could send middling prospects loaded up with money sacks to any team that's interested. And there are always teams interested in that kind of prospect.

Right-hander Zach McAllister is 7-6 with a 4.82 ERA in 18 starts at Triple-A. He doesn't have dominant stuff, but has good control and projects as a back of the rotation-type pitcher.

Right-hander Ivan Nova, 23, has better stats than McAllister (7-2, 3.21, 78 strikeouts in 103 2/3 innings) and has an impressive fastball. Nova has impressive talent, but has also struggled with consistency as a pro. This season is his best yet, and there's a question as to whether he's reached his ceiling. Still, he's got enough talent to be intriguing to other teams.

Mark Melancon has long been bantered about as the replacement for Rivera when Mo decides to turn his sights to Cooperstown, but Melancon has yet to live up to that hype. He could be one of those players that need a change in scenery to live up to his potential, and there's enough potential for other teams to take a chance on him.

Other possibilities include SS Eduardo Nunez and 2B David Adams, who was one of the other guys mentioned in the Lee trade.

Predictions: The Yankees will add a reliever and a starter -- possibly Lilly and the lefty Downs. Other than that, the team may think it doesn't have to do too much to keep ahead of the Rays and Red Sox.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.


Posted on: July 17, 2010 10:17 pm
Edited on: October 19, 2010 11:18 am
 

Burnett loses battle with Rays, Plexiglass


A.J. Burnett OK kids, a little lesson I learned in college -- there's no winner when you hit an inanimate object. The best case scenario is a tie. Worst case scenario is you break something and you've got to pay. In my case, it was my left hand, which hurts when you're left-handed and you've got classes on the history of the Russian Revolution and medieval Japan -- note taking and essay writing can be a chore with a cast on your hand.

The Yankees' A.J. Burnett lost his cool Saturday and had to leave in the third inning because of cuts on his hands.

Here's how the Star-Ledger 's Mike Mazzeo described the action :

Clearly frustrated after allowing three runs over the first two innings of his start this afternoon, Burnett, 33, went into the clubhouse and pushed a pair of Plexiglass lineup holders on the wooden double doors leading into the showers with great force, causing both of his palms to be cut.

Embarrassed by his actions, Burnett, who sustained lacerations on both hands, initially told trainer Steve Donohue he cut his hands bracing himself after falling down the dugout stairs. However, he later fessed up when questioned by manager Joe Girardi.

"I let my teammates down," said a remorseful Burnett after the Yankees' 10-5 loss to the Rays. "I let my frustrations get the best of me. It's something I've got to deal with."

[Joe] Girardi let Burnett pitch the third inning, hoping he would regain his composure and turn it around. But after the enigmatic right-handed flamethrower hit Evan Longoria and threw a wild pitch before allowing an RBI single to Carlos Pena, Girardi had enough. He went out to the mound along with trainer Gene Monahan and pulled Burnett from the game.
Burnett isn't expected to miss his next start, Girardi said and the pitcher noted he'd already apologized to Brian Cashman and would apologize to his teammates on Sunday.

The incident is reminiscent of a similar action by Kevin Brown in 2004, but Brown didn't suffer any cuts.

Burnett got the loss against the Rays and fell to 7-8 with a 4.99 ERA this season, with just one win in his last eight starts. Burnett is in the second year of a five-year, $82.5 million contract that pays him $16.5 million annually. For their troubles, the Yankees have gotten a 20-16 pitcher with a 4.37 ERA in 52 starts. Not a bad back-of-the-rotation guy in the leagues, but hardly someone you'd like to owe more nearly $60 million.

While not a complete bust -- Burnett can be dominating at times -- it's still a price tag that would cripple just about any other franchise, but once again the Yankees are different. It's naive -- and flat out incorrect -- to claim the Yankees buy titles and win only because of their free agent signings. No, the biggest difference for them is their ability to overcome these types of offseason mistakes. They pay dearly in dollars, but not in any other way.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.



Posted on: July 13, 2010 12:06 pm
Edited on: July 13, 2010 2:02 pm
 

Yankees paid more than Steinbrenner's invesment

George Steinbrenner bought the Yankees for a net price of $8.8 million from CBS in 1973 (it was $10 million, but then sold two parking lots back to CBS for $1.2 million). Here's a list of the 10 Yankees with base salaries more than that for just this season:

Alex Rodriguez $32 million
CC Sabathia $23 million
Derek Jeter $21 million
Mark Teixeira $20 million
A.J. Burnett $16.5 million
Mariano Rivera $15 million
Jorge Posada $13.1 million
Andy Pettitte $11.75 million
Javier Vazquez $11.5 million
Robinson Cano $9 million

Forbes magazine valued the team as worth $1.6 billion in April.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com