SportsNation Blog ArchivesSN Blog Archives A.J. Burnett

Some things to think about while New Yorkers watch the weather forecast and Phillies fans pray for rain.

John Lackey didn't want to come out of the game with the bases loaded and two out in the seventh. Darren Oliver, brought in to make Mark Teixeira switch sides of the plate, wasn't the answer.

In the bottom of the inning, A.J. Burnett was pulled after the first two batters reached base. The Yankees' bullpen blew the newfound lead.

Angles manager Mike Scioscia has used 24 pitchers, an average of almost five pitchers per game. Yankees manager Joe Girardi (25 in five games) has averaged five per game (although only two in each of CC Sabathia's starts).

Do a little managing of your own and critique the pitching decisions so far in the ALCS. Are Scioscia and Girardi too quick to switch pitchers, or are they doing whatever it takes to win?

Friday baseball chat: Jayson Stark, 1 p.m.

Vote: Who will win the ALCS?

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Sometimes we react to news, like when the Eagles decide to sign Michael Vick. Sometimes we plan things in advance. And sometimes we just let you do the work. Actually, we do that most of the time.

Fortunately, SportsNation usually provides us with plenty of cover for our slacking ways. So it was Friday, when an anonymous chatter asked a question that became a theme in Jayson Stark's chat and even carried over into Keith Law's chat.

Baseball Fans (Everywhere)

Anybody have better stuff than Verlander? Makes we want to be a Tigers fan just to watch him more often.

Jayson Stark
Jayson Stark

That's a fun question to contemplate. You can make a case that Josh Beckett is in this argument and Tim Lincecum. And Felix Hernandez and Zack Greinke deserve to be in the conversation. But nobody maintains his power stuff deep into a game better than Verlander for my money. Anybody else want to toss out some nominations? That's great chat fodder!

Birdman (Boston)

Who keeps the list of the most swing and misses? The guy who tops the list will be your nastiest.

Jayson Stark
Jayson Stark

Our stat department keeps it. And Justin Verlander is running away with the lead -- while pitching in the American League. So maybe you're right. Maybe he was the choice all along. Full transcript.

Bob (Salem)

This was just in Starks chat, but which pitcher do you think has the best "stuff"?

Keith Law
Keith Law

Among current big-league starters, probably Burnett - more life on the fastball than Verlander and at least as good of a curveball. Of course, Verlander beats Burnett on all the non-stuff things that count. Full transcript.

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