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News » Don't expect Joba to bail out Yanks 'pen yet

Don't expect Joba to bail out Yanks 'pen yet

Don't expect Joba to bail out Yanks 'pen yet
First things first: Yankees right-hander Joba Chamberlain is not returning to the bullpen — at least not yet.

"I can revisit that at any point," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Monday. "But right now, he is needed even more in the rotation than ever."

The Nationals demonstrated their offensive potential Monday night, but their absurdly inadequate bullpen blew an 11-7 lead to the Phillies by allowing six runs in the eighth inning.

The result: A 13-11 loss that dropped the team's record to 4-14 and did little to enhance the job security of manager Manny Acta.

Acting general manager Mike Rizzo probably will not dump Acta quickly — Rizzo, who was not always with the major-league club in his previous role as assistant GM, needs more time to form a judgment. He also recognizes that Acta is dealing with a dysfunctional roster — the handiwork of the previous GM, Jim Bowden.

Still, the Nats' fundamental play is dismal, and scouts routinely question Acta's decision-making. Acta blundered when he failed to penalize outfielder Lastings Milledge for showing up late on Opening Day. And if the Nationals continue to look inept, ownership might want change simply for change's sake.

  • Besides being perhaps the game's best hitter, Albert Pujols is one of the top bargains in the sport. The seven-year, $100 million contract that Pujols signed in Feb. 2004 pays him an average of $15.75 million in what would have been his first four free-agent years. The Cardinals hold a $16 million option for 2011, after which he can hit the open market. If Alex Rodriguez is worth $27.5 million per season ... you get the picture.

  • White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko on rookie second baseman ChrisGetz: "I love him. He has a high baseball IQ. He's not going to blow you away with any one facet. He's just on the ball. It's what they've been saying we needed to get in the minor leagues — better baseball players. He's one of those guys, you'll look up and he'll have 10 years in and you won't even realize it. He does something good every day."

  • It's too soon to conclude that A's left fielder Matt Holliday is suffering from post-Coors syndrome. Holliday, a .319 career hitter entering this season, is batting only .242 and has yet to hit a home run in 66 at-bats. The A's, however, believe that he simply is pressing. "The way he has hit balls early, he wouldn't have hits in Colorado, either," one team official says.

  • The Mets fixed their bullpen during the winter, but neglected their rotation. Since the start of last season, the combined ERA of the Mets' starters besides Johan Santana is 4.70. Meanwhile, the team's leading in-house alternative, lefty Jon Niese, had an 8.44 ERA in his first four starts at Class AAA.

  • Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik on the impact of Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Sweeney: "What those guys bring is exactly what we needed. We needed presence in the clubhouse with all that was going on a year ago, which is well-documented. What are you going to say to Ken Griffey Jr.? He has seen everything. And Sweeney is one of the best human beings in the world. He knows his role and is relishing it."

  • And finally, best wishes to Bob Tomaselli, who operates the television camera at the far side of the home dugout at Fenway Park.

    Tomaselli suffered a fractured eye socket on an errant throw during Yankees batting practice before the MLB on FOX broadcast Saturday. He received get-well calls from Red Sox owners Tom Werner and Larry Lucchino, and Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeria signed a ball and asked NESN reporter Heidi Watney to give it to Tomaselli.

    Seeing Bobby is one of the best parts about visiting Fenway. Thinking of you, buddy.

  • Author:Fox Sports
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    Added: April 28, 2009

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