The first topic discussed with Buster was whether Zack Greinke of the Kansas City Royals should/could win the AL Cy Young award even though he “only has 13 wins.” Buster answered with an emphatic “yes, of course.” Lowest ERA, lowest WHIP, 202 SOs to only 40 walks, AND he mentioned that over the past month and a half, CC Sabathia is getting, on average, 3 more runs worth of run support per game.
Mike Greenberg responded with the following:
“Of course, the pitcher’s job primarily is to win, and if your team scores 1, your job is to give up zero.”
Your job is also, apparently, to be psychic and to develop super human abilities to pitch better when you psychically know that your team won’t score much.
Buster then reiterated the run support point, compared all of the non-win stats to the Halladays and Sabathias of the world, and left the dumb duo silenced, as there was really nothing else to say.
They then played a clip from John Kruk criticizing the many ways the Yankees have used Joba Chamberlain, and the fact that they are now severely limiting his pitch count. I’ll paraphrase:
John Kruk: First they use him in the 7th inning, then the 8th inning, then all innings, then some innings in the middle of the game, and now the first 3 innings. How is he supposed to develop as a pitcher if he doesn’t know which innings he will be pitching, after all, in the 7th they add the fireball, and the 5th is played completely underwater, and in the 2nd they fill everyone’s shoes with Jello, and you have to get used to all of these variations and be able to prepare for the fireball if you're going to be playing in an inning where the fireball is on the field. What’s that Karl? All of the innings are exactly the same? And there is no fireball? Or underwater inning? And I'm a delusional weirdo who got into Lenny Dykstra's medicine cabinet one too many times? Well, you never played the game, so what do you know?
Buster basically called Kruk a moron, and while he didn’t use the term, he went on to explain the Verducci Effect, and how the Yankees see Chamberlain as a long-term asset and are being very forward-looking in how they are handling him. In fact, while Kruk asserted that they have no plan for Chamberlain, their plan is smart and obvious and makes sense given everything we know about young pitchers.
Some Mike asked “But they’re only doing this because they’re the Yankees and have a huge lead and can afford to be all crazy and experimental, right?” Buster replied that, “No, if they were tied for the division lead or 20 games back or 20 games ahead, they would be doing the same thing. This is a long term plan for Chamberlain that makes perfect sense.”
Nice job Buster.