From Bryan Hoch (MLB):
A.J. Burnett, who gets the ball Friday, has been more unreliable than expected in recent starts. While Burnett — 1-5 with a 6.14 ERA since the start of August — has maintained that he is “not concerned” and vows the Yankees will “be all right,” there are clearly crucial adjustments that he must make, avoiding the type of six-run innings that he served up to the Orioles in his last start.
“I’m throwing the ball where I want to for the most part,” Burnett said. “You eliminate a couple of mistakes and everything’s great.”
Over the past 30 days (5 starts), A.J. Burnett has given up 25 ER over 29 1/3 innings pitched, leading to a 1-3 record. During that time, he has a 7.67 ERA and a 5.68 FIP. Is it just me or is Burnett’s statement, that “[y]ou eliminate a couple of mistakes and everything’s great,” seem particularly weak? While his lack of focus is often frustrating, his lack of accountability (i.e., “I need to do more, I need to pitch a better ballgame”) is astounding.
A.J. does a lot of things well and he brings a lot to the team, however, I’m sure most of us would like to see his skills translate into some form of success as the season comes to a close. He’ll have three more starts—one tomorrow against King Felix—to try and figure it out before postseason play. Let’s hope that he “eliminates a couple of mistakes” and that “everything’s great.”