Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Nick Starting To Be More Swisher And Less Punto Lately

(Are there any pictures of this guy NOT smiling?  Courtesy of The AP)

On May 26 Nick Swisher was at his lowest statistical point of the season.  He had just gone 0-3 against the Blue Jays and his tripleslash for the season was .204/.321/.289.  The .321 OBP wasn't horrible considering how low the BA was, but a .289 SLG is unfathomably bad.  I don't want to say that I could do that, because it's a well known fact to anybody who reads this blog on a regular basis that I was a horrendous player in my Little League days, but I think I could have closed my eyes on every swing, run into a few misplaced pitches here and there, and put up a .289 SLG.  The worst part about this was the fact that it was the 2nd game after Joe gave Swish 2 days off to get his shit together and the 2nd of the 2 games after the mini-vacation that Swish didn't collect a hit.  He was lost at the plate, sinking in the batting order, and the unintelligent portions of the Yankee fanbase had already written him off for this season and exercised their right to not pick up his option for 2012.

Since then, however, we've seen signs that the Swish we've come to know and love over the last 2 seasons is re-emerging from his 2-month slumber.  Since that fateful May 25 game, Swish has 10 hits in his last 33 at-bats, 6 of them for extra bases (3 2B, 3 HR), 4 runs scored, 7 RBI, and 9 walks to just 5 K.  His tripleslash has risen to .222/.345/.357, his OPS has crept above .700 for the first time since April 5, and his wOBA is back up above .300 at .315.  It's still a bit early to call him officially "back," but that undeniable positivity that I talked about when he came back from his benching on May 24 appears to have gotten Swish back on the right track.

My favorite stat out of all that is the 9-5 BB-K ratio.  We saw a lot of swinging and missing from Swish in May, even while he maintained a solid BB rate, so it's good to see him get back to seeing the ball, squaring up on it, and putting good swings on hittable pitches, all while not sacrificing his trademark patience and good eye at the plate.  If he can keep doing that and putting himself in good hitters' counts, this recent resurgence should continue.  And with the continued inconsistency of the heart of the order, that would be a welcome sight for Yankee fans.

Can Somebody Please Hit This Asshole?

(No, really.  Somebody needs to hit this asshole.)

Seriously, dude.  Why don't you stand and admire it a little longer?  Dick.  And then to say this after the game:

“I’m a home run hitter. It’s not like I do it all the time. But it’s part of the excitement. What can I tell you? I just went deep. You want more emotion than that. I just went deep. It’s another homer for Papi.  That was one of the Papi good ones."

“That’s Papi style.  You saw that before.” (via The Post)

Jesus Christ, bro.  Try not to sprain your AC joint patting yourself on the back.  Yes, you're a home run hitter.  And that's EXACTLY why you shouldn't have standing there like Barry Bonds hitting his 73rd admiring the fucking thing.  Let's review; you hit a home run off a rookie pitcher in what, at the time, was a 3-run regular season game in June.  Not September, not October, June.  You want to celebrate that?  Be my guest.  But don't be surprised if A.J. or CC stick one in your or one of your teammates' ribs before the series ends and don't bitch about it afterwords.  See how you feel about "Papi style" then.

Oh, and tell your buddy Papelbon to calm down with his celebration too.  Dude, you're coming off a game where you completely imploded  and got yourself suspended and then you allowed a run to score and had the tying run at the plate last night before getting off the hook.  Not exactly worthy of yelling and screaming like you just saved Game 7.

But hey, if the Sawx want to treat their typical early-season dominance like it matters, be my guest.  Just don't make excuses when you get swept in September again and don't bitch and moan when Joba buzzes Youk's tower again.  You want to make yourselves targets?  Don't be offended when the hunters shoot at you.

(Photos courtesy of Anthony J. Causi at The Post.  Crosshair Photoshop work by Swanny Duckson.  Douchebaggery courtesy of Fraud Sawx Nation.)

The Fraud Sawx Have Freddy's Numbah

(Yeesh.  Courtesy of The AP)

Freddy Garcia has now made 10 starts this season.  In those 10 starts, he is 4-5 with 60 hits, 22 walks, and 9 HR allowed in 58.1 innings, equaling out to a 3.86 ERA, 4.74 FIP, 4.20 xFIP, and 1.41 WHIP.  For the most part, he has been serviceable as the 4th/5th starter, if not downright good at times.  But after last night's gong show at The Stadium, it's clear what his Achilles heel is and it really comes as no surprise.

In 2 starts against the Sawx this year, Garcia's line looks like this:

7 IP, 10 H, 5 BB, 8 ER, 3 HR, 5 K, 10.29 ERA, 2.14 WHIP, 0-2

Now when he's been on this season, Freddy has pitched effectively against most offenses.  His movement on his off-speed stuff and his pitching intelligence have been enough to allow him to get by with a heater that has about as much zip to it as your average Little Leaguer's.  But against a good hitting team, that dog just don't hunt and last night the Sawx, a very good hitting team on a very hot hot streak,  just punished Garcia and got enough off of him early before Joe pulled the plug to hold on.

You look around the AL and you don't see many teams with lineups half as good as that of Bahhston, or the Yankees for that matter.  As long as he stays healthy, we can expect to get the same marginal service from Freddy against the rest of the league with a good start thrown in here and there, and with the Yankee offense that should be enough to be successful.  But if this is the best he can do against Bahhston, then Joe might want to think about juggling the rotation to keep him out of it the next time they come to town instead of Nova.