Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Kei Yankee

This is the living definition of an MLB+ team; the ability to take a $46 million flyer on a pitcher, and when he doesn't work out, stash him in AAA without the fan base even really thinking a second thought about it. Of course, when Carl Pavano is scheduled to make $10 million this year for throwing as many innings for the team as you and I will, eating bad contracts is something of an art form.

That would be the story of the New York Yankees and Kei Igawa, last year's Japanese import that thudded worse than the Matthew Broderick Godzilla film, with a 6.25 ERA... and with 14 games (12 starts) that only took up 67.2 innings, and a 1.67 WHIP. it's not like there was a bad outing or two that made the numbers look worse than they were. On the hill, he looked like a nibbler control pitcher with a telegraphed change-up, rather than a good strikeout option, which is what he projected from his past career in Japan.

In spring training this year, Igawa has thrown four scoreless innings, though the last outing was walk-filled and ugly. He's probably destined for AAA no matter what he does in camp, given how the Yankees have younger and more exciting options, April will probably only see work for him as a long man out of the bullpen, and they are going to want to see a lot more than a few good weeks to wash the taste of last year out of their mouth...

But well, this is the difference between the Yankees and (nearly) everyone else. If Igawa was in camp for more than 2/3rds of the teams in MLB, given the outlay, he'd have a starting job in a rotation, and in some places, maybe as the #3 starter. In the Bronx, he's a mystery to be considered later, and a possible ace in the hole.

No comments:

Ads In This Size Rule