New York Yankees: The Cashman Rules New York Yankees: The Cashman Rules New York Yankees: The Cashman Rules

New York Yankees: The Cashman Rules


It would be almost impossible for any New York Yankees fan to forget about the infamous “Joba Rules” and “Hughes Rules”.

GM Brian Cashman gave the impression that these rules were set guidelines for rookie pitchers Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes, with the intent to make their transition’s smooth, while allowing them to develop efficiently to elude injuries.

It definitely included a fixed innings limit, but my doubts started when Kristie Ackert of the NY Daily News reported that neither Cashman, nor skipper Joe Girardi would confirm the number of innings Joba was allowed to pitch in 2009.

Ackert’s closing line was: There were no real answers coming from the Yankees Thursday. “You’ll have to stay tuned,” Cashman, said.

From what I saw neither Joba nor Hughes ever was allowed to pitch pass the fifth or sixth innings due to these supposed limitations, regardless of how either was pitching that day.

Another pattern that formed was if either Joba or Hughes got into trouble early in a game, they were immediately yanked and what I thought the majority of the time was too soon.

Experiencing failures is what builds character, grows confidence; not babying the person who makes the mess by having someone else clean it up every time.

Looking back, all the fuss was more for the Yankees who constantly did what they perceived good for the team, not what was best for the Joba or Hughes, and you can also add Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Ian Kennedy to the list.

Kennedy was traded because they Yankees grew unfairly impatient and now they are kicking themselves because Kennedy star is now shining brightly.


How are Kennedy, Joba and Hughes doing today?

Ian Kennedy was traded in December of 2009 to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the three-team Curtis Granderson deal. Kennedy is having a career year, posting a 7-2, with a 3,23 ERA, threw a complete game and has gone 100 innings in total over 14 starts. He is finally turning into the pitcher the Yankees were hoping to see, but impatience got in the way of growth and the D-backs are the recipients.

Phil Hughes was stellar in 2009 coming out of the bullpen, playing a big part the team’s success. In 2010, Hughes won a spot back in the rotation, went on the win 18 games and named to his first All-Star team. Following playing in the 2010 All-Star Game, Hughes started to decline in the second-half of the season, but that he got more run support than any other MLB starter covered up just how bad it was. This season, Hughes couldn’t hide his lack of speed and control any longer. In three starts he went 0-1, with an ERA of 13.94, with just three strikeouts and batters were hitting just shy of .400 against him. Since, Hughes has been on the DL in hopes of waking-up what has been diagnosed as a “dead arm.” Whether Hughes can be effective is TBD.

Joba Chamberlain went from struggling as starter into the bullpen in 2011, where he was kicking butt posting a 2-0 record, with an ERA of 2.83 in 27 appearances. Suffering from some what was thought to be mild elbow discomfort, a pre-cautionary MRI revealed he needed Tommy John surgery. Joba won’t be pitch till about two months into 2012 season. This was a huge blow for the Yankees, who have the majority of the bullpen on the DL already.


Upon hearing of Joba’s bad news a week ago, only leads to the fact that innings limits should be thrown out the window.

How could it not when the point behind limiting of innings obviously and completely failed with Hughes and Chamberlain.

Also, take into account at how Kennedy is thriving in Arizona because it all correlates when looking at the bigger picture.

Maybe if the Yankees had just let the boys’ pitch it would have built-up the arm strength, so they could tolerate and recover better before any significant damage was done.

Rules are supposed to be defined and laid-out ways prescribed for doing certain things, with the idea of producing a certain result.

Well, the results are in and they are horrific. If Cashman and company do not learn from their mistakes, my bet is there is other motivation behind this.

By not giving young talented pitchers a shot a the major league level at all, or by keeping their appearances brief avoids their trade value dropping, as growing pains can dampen their initial worth.

So I was totally shocked when I dug up Bill Madden of the NY Daily News article that the Yankees have all their starting pitchers on pitch counts and innings limits in the minors. Madden wrote the article back in February 2011, so it has gone on for months already.

Wonder how long the Killer B’s are going to stay in the minors now?

Hughes came directly from Double-A so that excuse won’t work; the team is in dire straits for arms and why couldn’t one be the next Freak or King?

This whole fiasco has damaged both the team, but more importantly Joba and Hughes’ futures are now both at risk because of others carelessness and that is just not right.

Now it looks as if there is a round two and what scares me is things could get even worse this time.

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  2. Frank Spero says:

    i always said that putting joba as a starter ruined him now look at the kid he's just coming back albit not fast enough for the assholes girardi and cashman why don't they get a trainer as good as the other teams because the other teams don't want them to have one

    • Kate says:

      Frank the Yankees were selfish with both Joba and Huges and look where they both landed….the DL, which was the Yanks excuse for treating them with no regard. It was for their own good???? Well, a lot of good it did.

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