The #1 New York talk show and message board debate is about how Joe Girardi started A.J. Burnett on 3-day’s rest instead of pitching Chad Gaudin, who has become an unlikely savior of sorts. This is a major issue because the Yankees lost to the Phillies in World Series Game 5, and A.J. Burnett sucked real bad. For the record, the majority of people say that it was the wrong decision (of course, THEY are offended AFTER A.J. Burnett lasted 2 innings). Let’s go over the arguments until your HEAD spins.
A.J. Burnett should NOT have started Game 5:
1) A fully rested A.J. at home is better than a 3-day rested A.J on the road.
2) Now Andy Pettitte has to pitch on 3-day’s rest, and he has a bad 3-day’s rest career.
3) The “right baseball move” is to have starters pitch on regular’s day rest, and not have multiple starters going on 3-day’s rest.
4) Why not use Gaudin for a few innings, and then use most of the bullpen to cover him if he gets into trouble early?
5) This was the weakest lineup due to Jose Molina. Against Cliff Lee and no DH (Godzilla), the Yanks had Gardner, Molina, and AJ bat against him, and Nick Swisher batting after A-Rod.
6) Why not pitch Gaudin in Game 4, CC Sabathia Game 5, AJ Game 6, Pettitte Game 7?
7) Pitch Gaudin in Game 5, whatever happens happens; this is baseball. Have a fully rested AJ start Game 6 if necessary (AJ pitches better at home). For Game 7, CC will start and a fully rested Pettitte can come out of the bullpen and back him up.
8) Andy Pettitte may have a weak arm for Game 6.
9) When this series started, the Yanks had three pitchers in the rotation because Gaudin was rusty and unproven (and Joba as a starter had bombed). However when the Yankees went up 3-1, they were then playing with house money. You never want to give away a game, but last night was the game to give since Cliff Lee was pitching.
A.J. Burnett SHOULD have started Game 5
1) A.J. Burnett had a super 3-day’s rest career record.
2) A.J. had a great World Series Game 2.
3) A.J. is much better than Chad Gaudin.
4) Gaudin hadn’t started a game in over a month.
5) AJ is a HEADCASE and would have lost Game 5 OR Game 6, which would force Game 7. In other words, it doesn’t matter how many days rest AJ had- he would have lost anyway,
6) If you think AJ wilts under stress, check out a Gaudin interview to see how scared he is when he’s not mopping up a blow-out.
7) If Phil Coke didn’t give up those 2 HRs, the Yanks would have found a way to win, so it’s a moot point.
8) Who’s better: Andy Pettitte taking the challenge of 3-day’s rest or AJ BURNETT on ANY day’s rest? Who will gut it out? Who is more dependable?
9) Why eliminate Andy from pitching the rest of the post-season? Why trade a Gaudin start for an Andy start?
You be the judge.
My personal opinion? Don’t blame Joe Girardi for A.J. Burnett’s mental issues and inconsistency.
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