Friday, June 5, 2009

Shuffle Up And Deal

The week was shaping up to be a tough test for Chien-Ming Wang.

After pitching Thursday, Wang was lined up to pitch the opener Tuesday at Boston against Josh Burnett and then the series finale Sunday against the Mets and Johan Santana.

Talk about being thrown into the fire.

Friday's rainout fixed that a tad.

Joe Girardi took advantage of the unscheduled day off to juggle his rotation.

CC Sabathia will start Saturday with Joba Chamberlain being pushed back to Sunday. The Yankees will keep Andy Pettitte in Monday's spot, jumping A.J. Burnett to Tuesday's opener in Boston.

The move pushes Wang's next start to Wednesday against Tim Wakefield and keeps him out of the Subway Series.

Wang has a long road back and there is no doubt the only way he'll return to his old form is by taking the ball every fifth day. The problem is that he simply isn't ready for these high-pressure, intense series right now. The Yankees will be lucky if he gets through four innings without giving up more than four runs Wednesday.

Imagine if they had to endure two of those types of starts this week.

Also by moving Burnett to the Sox series opener, Girardi balanced out the pitching matchup. Burnett throughout his career has dominated the Sox, though in his last outing at Fenway he melted down and blew a 6-0 lead in a slugfest the Yankees eventually lost.

And even though he's had some control issues recently, Burnett still is a much better matchup against the Sox and Beckett than Wang is right now.

We just have to hope the moves pays off because the Yankees needs to show they can beat the Sox after losing the first five to them this year.

On The Mend
Brian Bruney threw a bullpen session and said he didn't feel any pain, though he didn't throw at max effort. It's a positive step, but the Yankees need to be careful here. They need Bruney back soon, but they need him healthy and 100 percent. No sense in risking yet another stint on the DL.

Up Next
Saturday vs. Rays, 1:05 p.m., YES
David Price (1-0, 3.00) vs. Sabathia (5-3, 3.46)

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