Friday, September 26, 2014

Mad Respect For Phil Hughes

In the offseason I was perfectly okay with letting Phil Hughes walk. From 2012 through 2013, his final two seasons with the Yankees, Phil had an ERA of 4.62 to go along with a record of 20-27. I saw no reason to keep him with CC Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka (hopefully, at least, as Tanaka was a month away from signing when Hughes and the Twins agreed to their deal), Michael Pineda, Ivan Nova, and Hiroki Kuroda. Not to mention guys like David Phelps that could fill in if/when needed.

But what I read today makes me think the Yankees should have taken another look at Phil. No, it's not because of the 3.52 ERA, along with 16 wins, he had this season. It's not even because of his record setting K/BB ratio of 0.7. The reason comes down to one word... loyalty.
I owe too much to this organization for the next two years to risk getting hurt for an incentive," Hughes said. "For whatever reason it wasn't meant to be. There's a lot bigger problems out there. I'm proud of my season.
Phil Hughes last start of the season was cut short due to a rain delay. Now, having your start cut short sucks in and of itself, but Phil was one out away from triggering an incentive that would have gotten him an extra $500,000. And Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, along with general manager Terry Ryan, were willing to put Hughes into another game for a shot at that half million dollars. But Phil turned it down.

Mind you, it's not like Hughes would be hurting for money without that $500,000. He was guaranteed $8 million this season, along with another $16 million the next two seasons, to go along with already getting another $500,000 for getting to 180 and 195 innings. But it's just one more out we're talking about. And the chances of Phil getting hurt in that short outing are slim to none. But Hughes would rather be safe than sorry, and make sure he's healthy.

That's a great mindset, and the Twins should count themselves very lucky to have somebody like that.


  1. Phil did everything the Yankees asked of him while he was here, he never complained and took a beating from some of the fans and Media people. Both he and Joba were badly used and misused as Yankees.
    I am truly happy for them, and hope they have very good careers wherever they go!

  2. A young pitcher (want a be) once needed a pitch that was slower and have more movement than his all-ready slow pitches. He asked a pitcher how to throw something like that, he was introduced to the guy on the team with the best Knuckle Ball. To his surprise, the guy was a fielder...not a pitcher! The guy was a very bad teacher, (like Teddy Ballgame) but the kid got the idea and went back to the pitcher with his new pitch!
    That is were the tweaking came into play, as he was showing him the new grip and motion he had him try it by moving one of his fingers which made the ball move one way or another...Joke, joke, joke...the ball had a predilection for going where ever it wanted too.
    Anyhow, with a little more help...the knuckleball became one of the pitches this kid used the rest of his life...but, not really anything but a surprise pitch.
    Thanks to Mr. Lopat and Mr. Mantle.


Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)