Examining the slow start

I’ve been holding out waiting to write about some good news, but outside of A-Rod’s return, there hasn’t been much in the Yankee universe.

The Replacement Level Yankees Weblog has a good breakdown of the Yankees’ slow start in 2007 versus their start this year. What is interesting is that while this year’s Yanks have allowed 3 less runs, they’ve scored 63 less.

So why can the Yankees not hit this year? Well, injuries is also part of it, and also according to RLYW, every single Yankee except for Johnny Damon and Melky Cabrera have performed below (and some of them significantly below) their projected numbers. And in the case of Damon and Cabrera, they haven’t exceeded their numbers, they’re simply right on par.

So that’s one reason. Also it seems as if the Yankees have faced in inordinate number of quality starters. Is there truth to this? Let’s take a look at who the Yankees have faced:

  1. Halladay (W)
  2. Burnett (L)
  3. McGowen (W)
  4. Sannanstine (L)
  5. Jackson (L)
  6. Shields (W)
  7. Hammel (W)
  8. Bannister (L)
  9. Greinke (L)
  10. Bale (W)
  11. Buchholz (W)
  12. Beckett (L)
  13. Dice-K (L)
  14. Sonnanstine (W)
  15. Jackson (W)
  16. Buchholz (W)
  17. Beckett (L)
  18. Cabrera (L)
  19. Burres (L)
  20. Trachsel (W)
  21. Contreras (W)
  22. Vazquez (W)
  23. Floyd (L)
  24. Byrd (L)
  25. Sowers (L)
  26. Sabathia (W)
  27. Laffey (W)
  28. Rogers (L)
  29. Bonderman (L)
  30. Robertson (L)
  31. Bedard (W)
  32. Hernandez (W)
  33. Silva (W)
  34. Carmona (L)
  35. Lee (L)
  36. Byrd (W)
  37. Rogers (L)
  38. Bonderman (W)
  39. Garza (L)
  40. Jackson (L)
  41. Shields (W)
  42. Kazmir (L)
  43. Santana (L)
  44. Perez (L)
  45. Cabrera (L)

Considering how well Jackson, Garza, Shields, and Cabrera have all pitched this year, that’s a pretty formidable group. Sure, losing to Kenny Rogers, Andy Sonnanstine, and Paul Byrd isn’t anything to brag about, but the Yankees have defeated Bedard, Hernandez, Beckett, and Sabathia.

So what does all this mean? Well, one the Yankees need to learn to hit good pitching (and this could relate to their recent postseason woes as well). Secondly, the Yankees need to catch a few days where they face some bad pitching.

If nothing else, I’m sure the second thing will happen pretty soon.

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