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August 27, 2005

Repairing The Unit

From the News:

Randy Johnson hasn't had the greatest of seasons. In fact, he admits his first year in pinstripes has been "frustrating" at times.

But Johnson insists he hasn't lost confidence in his ability. Instead, he says, he's just lost his ability to maintain his mechanics at times.

That is why Johnson changed his routine when he threw a bullpen session on Wednesday. Instead of throwing off of flat ground like he usually does, Johnson climbed the mound in the Yankee Stadium bullpen and fired balls as if he were pitching in a game.

Johnson said he received advice from pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre, personal catcher John Flaherty, Jorge Posada - the catcher he supposedly has an icy relationship with - and Joe Kerrigan, his former pitching coach in Montreal who was recently hired by the Yankees as a special pitching instructor. All agreed that Johnson's mechanics needed to be tightened up.

Mel, Flash, and Jorgie have been on the Johnson case all summer and nothing happened. Kerrigan talks to him once, for the first time, this past Tuesday, and then the next day, Randy tries the new warm-up routine - and then has a great game.

Unit's being very PC here in the credit. But, I truly believe this is all Kerrigan.

Posted by Steve Lombardi at August 27, 2005 11:31 AM


Yes. The previous 8 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 9 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 8 IP, 3 H, 1 R performances were all just Randy/fate because Mel and Posada stink. But, this 8 IP, 4 H, 1 R performance is because of Kerrigan.

Posted by: Patrick at August 27, 2005 11:56 AM

Right on Patrick. Johnson has made adjustments between starts before which have seemed to work. And then another start comes and he stinks. If he maintains a high level for the rest of the season/postseason (that's right. No jinx here. The Yanks are making it!) then I'll give it some consideration that Kerrigan is the difference maker.

Posted by: Nick at August 27, 2005 12:00 PM

That's my point - if Unit rolls from here, it's Kerrigan.

But, if we see more games like the start before the one from last night, then it's the same old, up and down, stuff.

Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 27, 2005 03:48 PM

Was Kerrigan giving the same advice as Mel & Jorge? If so, maybe now Unit will listen to them.

Posted by: rbj at August 27, 2005 03:56 PM