"Now, what is this site about, how Joe Torre ruined pitchers' arms? Is that it?"
-Michael Kay, August 18, 2009

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Typical Hughes

Phil Hughes made his first start since April 29, and his performance tonight was similar to his performances prior to his mysterious rib injury.

In four innings tonight, Hughes threw 89 pitches (57 strikes) while allowing four hits, one earned run and two walks (four strikeouts).

Inefficiency has been Hughes' game when he's been on the mound. On April 8, Hughes threw 87 pitches in three innings. He followed up that start with a 65-pitch, two-inning outing on April 13. Then on April 29, Hughes threw 82 pitches in 3 2/3 innings.

A positive to take from tonight was that his hits, runs and walks were all down. Prior to tonight's game, Hughes had surrendered 34 hits, 22 earned runs and 13 walks in 22 innings.

This is something the Yankees will need to work on with their young starters during the spring. Ian Kennedy and Joba Chamberlain have also had high-pitch, low-inning starts. The difference is that Chamberlain has shown the ability to get big strikeouts when he needs to, while Kennedy and Hughes nibble around the strike zone. This eventually drives up their pitch counts while not going deep into games.

My biggest fear is that Hughes will not amount to what the Yankees thought he'd be. He is still very young and could prove to be a reliable starter, but the jury is still out.

Oh, the Yankees won tonight, by the way.

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)


kongon said...

A least Hughes didn't get lit up. It might have been a quality start, or maybe he just dodged a bullet. I'm just hoping he can fully heal up and work in the offseason. Then we can see what he brings to the table in '09.

He'll either turn out to be something good down the road or be one of those "untouchable" players that ends being mediocre and should have been used as trade bait long ago (Nick Johnson, anyone?).

raven said...

Phil Coke is more impressive than Phil Hughes.

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com said...

I think Hughes might be okay next year. Not ready to give up on him at all. As kongon said, he didn't get lit up. He just needs to find an out pitch. He's way more impressive than Kennedy, who, if he has any trade value, should be shipped out. When I think how the Twins would have taken him and Melky in the package for Santana, it makes me nuts.

Andrew Fletcher said...

I definitely have more faith in Hughes than I do in Kennedy, but that's not saying much.

I do agree with you, Jane, regarding trading Kennedy. I never thought he'd be that good to begin with. Your Santana thought made me sad.

I'll be interested to see how Hughes performs in his next start.

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