LADY AT THE BAT: Who Will Step Up & Be The Yankees Ace?

Friday, April 15, 2016

Who Will Step Up & Be The Yankees Ace?

The Yankees are in search of an ace for their rotation. It's not that their ace is not already on their roster, he just hasn't shown himself. Case in point is Thursday night's starter, Nathan Eovaldi, an under the radar pickup two winters ago, pitching brilliantly and staked to a 2-0 lead, until giving up a one out walk to former Yankee Russell Martin in the 5th inning.  Another out and Eovaldi appeared to be off the hook. Then a double followed by a three run home run by Josh Donaldson ruined Eovaldi's night. 

Three runs isn't all that bad, except when you are trying to match Toronto's new ace. Marcus Stroman pitch for pitch in a low scoring game. Eovaldi's ace- to- non- ace night ended after the Jay's Troy Tulowitzki took him deep for run number four. So much for an ace performance when it was sorely needed. Better luck next time.

The story of the Yankees early season, more so than it's lockdown bullpen (Ivan Nova's Wednesday night meltdown notwithstanding) has been it's so-so rotation. Presumed ace Masahiro Tanaka has failed to pitch six innings in each of his first two starts. Both Eovaldi and Michael Pineda pitched better the second time around, but when an ace has been needed, no one has shown up in the first eight games. CC Sabathia wasn't all that bad the first time around but he is your fifth starter which translates into "former  ace" That leaves promising righty Luis Severino, who at best could be labeled "future ace" or "ace in the making" Wishful thinking and all, we would like to anoint Severino the new ace, but realistically he is still learning the ropes at the major league level.

This is not to suggest Eovaldi, Severino, Tanaka or even Pineda won't develop into aces at some point, perhaps soon,  but Eovaldi's night doesn't exactly evoke memories of Ron Guidry in his prime. How many times did Gator, or say Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte or a younger Sabathia, staked to a 2-0 lead, with no additional support, finish the deal?

Yes, better luck next time.

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