On Saturday, the New York Yankees fell to the Tampa Bay Rays by a score of 7-2.
However, the score was close for most of the game. A few decisions regarding the bullpen over the last few days may of been the reason for the lopsided loss.
A fresh-ish Kahnle
A lot of people were left asking why Tommy Kahnle didn’t pitch on Saturday. His ERA has been one of the best in baseball, sitting at 1.13.
Kahnle was used on Thursday and Friday, but got it done so efficiently that he threw just 18 total pitches over an inning each outing. He would of likely been fine to pitch a third day in a row.
Green was available
The Yankees also mentioned before the Tampa series began that reliever Chad Green was about ready to rejoin the team from Scranton during the weekend. The plan is that Green would not appear in anymore AAA games, and his next outing would be an MLB outing.
If the Yankees needed a fresh arm, I don’t understand why you don’t just call him up. He could potentially give you two innings with his revamped stuff.
Why inning-by-inning doesn’t always work.
With guys pitching an inning a night, it allows them to pitch multiple nights in a row. If a pitcher throws multiple innings in an outing, they likely become unavailable the next night.
Well, the Yankees threw all of their big guys on Thursday and Friday, those being Tommy Kahnle, Zack Britton, Adam Ottavino, and Aroldis Chapman.
You know that if you have several close games in a row, you will want to have you best pitchers throw, right?
In the Yankees mindset, if there would be three close games in a row, it would be on the low-leverage guys to get the job done.
Instead of throwing all four big guys for two nights in a row, plan so you have say Kahnle and Chapman throw one night, and have throw Britton and Ottavino the next, each pitcher throwing two innings. So each pitcher would throw two innings, then get a night off. Then, stick a low-leverage guy in there if you get a short start or are forced to do so in a long game. But, extra innings games often see all of your high leverage pitchers anyway.
Since the Yankees had none of their good arms ready on Saturday, Jonathan Holder and Nestor Cortes Jr. came in and combined to give up five runs over three innings.
Maybe if Aaron Boone had better bullpen management, the Yankees would be able to win a few more games. The management of his bullpen is one of the two things holding the team back, the other obviously being injuries.