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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Curry: Excited to be back in camp, Andy Pettitte has set lofty goals

20 wins? Who was the last pitcher to have 20-win seasons in 3 different decades?

For Pettitte, being a 40-year old pitcher trumps being a 30-year old pitcher since he suggested that he is a better pitcher than he was a decade ago. Pettitte, who is excited about the baseball detour that took him from retired instructor to dependable starting pitcher (again) has lofty goals. He stressed that he wants to stay healthy, make each of his starts and also log at least 200 innings.

“Heck, I want to win 20 games,” Pettitte added. “That’s what I want.”

As long as Pettitte avoids injuries, the Yankees trust that he will be effective. He was 5-4 with a 2.87 earned run average and averaged 8.2 strikeouts and 2.5 walks per nine innings last year, excellent statistics for a left-hander who was a spectator throughout 2011. Pettitte was honest about how much the Yankees need him stay on the mound and produce. The same is true for CC Sabathia and Hiroki Kuroda, the two starters that precede him in the rotation, and Phil Hughes, who follows him and who already has a stiff upper back this spring.

“It’s a big responsibility,” Pettitte said. “I want to uphold that responsibility.”

Repoz Posted: February 20, 2013 at 06:33 AM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

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   1. ajnrules Posted: February 20, 2013 at 07:18 AM (#4372410)
I'm going with Roger Clemens.
-24 in 1986, 20 in 1987
-21 in 1990, 21 in 1997, 20 in 1998
-20 in 2001

EDIT: Crazy...not even Cy Young did it! As far as I can tell the only other guys to do it were Bob Feller and Warren Spahn!
   2. Howie Menckel Posted: February 20, 2013 at 08:58 AM (#4372426)

Other than a dazzling 2005 in Houston, Pettitte hasn't pitched 200 IP with an ERA below 4.00 since 2001 (3.99 in 200.6 IP). Before that, 1997, which is his only other dazzling year.

He has at times been very good in small doses, or a solid innings-eater in large doses, but rarely the twain have met.



   3. Rough Carrigan Posted: February 20, 2013 at 10:37 AM (#4372478)
As a Red Sox fan I can't wait for the wheels to come off the Pettitte train. I still shake my head at the complete pass he got for his semi/partial/sort of apology for using HGH. Only to help the team. And nothing else, just that. Sure.

I think the whole PED issue is overblown but other than being liked by the writers it's hard to see how he got out of the whole thing so easily.
   4. John Northey Posted: February 20, 2013 at 11:08 AM (#4372514)
Well, in his last 33 starts (2010/2012) he has a 3.13 ERA 16-7 record, 204 1/3 IP 2.7 BB/9 7.5 SO/9 0.9 HR/9 137 ERA+
Very nice stats. One does wonder though...given he has used before could he have taken the year off to 'rebuild'? I mean, all but the HR numbers are better than his career average and the HR is barely off (0.9 vs 0.8) all while 38-40 years old. Seems a bit suspicious yet the writers seem to totally ignore it.

Pettitte is smart to come back though. With a solid year he'll pass Jack Morris in total wins (245 now so just needs a 10 win season to pass Morris). One more post-season win and he is up to 20 of those. Those are getting to serious HOF consideration numbers. The smart thing for him is to keep going out and delaying his first ballot as long as possible - hoping that Bonds or Clemens gets into the HOF thus making it much easier for voters to say 'screw it' to PED's and to let him in.
   5. SG Posted: February 20, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4372536)
One does wonder though...given he has used before could he have taken the year off to 'rebuild'? I mean, all but the HR numbers are better than his career average and the HR is barely off (0.9 vs 0.8) all while 38-40 years old. Seems a bit suspicious yet the writers seem to totally ignore it.


It's possible, although his fastball velocity in 2012 was down 1.2 mph from 2010 (87.8 vs. 89.0). I figured he's mixing his pitches differently although there's not a ton of difference in percentages according to his Fangraphs page. The biggest difference I see between his 2010 and 2012 is his GB% going from 43.9% to 56.3%. So maybe he's traded some velocity for some sink.
   6. John Northey Posted: February 20, 2013 at 01:21 PM (#4372668)
He certainly could be 100% clean now, but given how writers are so quick to condemn Clemens even though he is the only guy accused who ever went through a court process and won, then give a free pass to Pettitte despite admitting to using once before and then taking a year off and coming back pitching as well as he ever has despite being 40. I mean, a lot of alarm bells should've been going off there.

Ah well. In truth I'd prefer to just ignore PED's unless they are clearly harmful to the players health. Make them open and known and do real tests and put in guidelines about usage. It is just silly how much time and effort is spent trying to stop usage of certain PED's but encouraging others (ones that aren't banned).
   7. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 20, 2013 at 06:31 PM (#4372972)
Needs 1 more postseason win to get 20 of that variety, too.

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