Tag Archives: Andy Pettitte

Andy Pettitte Sets All-Time New York Yankees Strikeout Record Passing Hall Of Famer Whitey Ford

Andy Pettitte Sets All-Time New York Yankees Strikeout Record Passing Hall Of Famer Whitey Ford

From ESPN.com

MINNEAPOLIS — Andy Pettitte has broken Whitey Ford’s record for career strikeouts by a New York Yankees pitcher.

Pettitte struck out Justin Morneau in the fifth inning against Minnesota on Monday night to give him 1,958 for his career. Ford has held the mark since he retired in 1967.

Pettitte entered the game needing two strikeouts to break the record. He fanned Clete Thomas in the second inning to tie it, then got Morneau swinging in the fifth.


The three-time All-Star broke into the big leagues with the Yankees in 1995 and has spent all but three of his 18 seasons in pinstripes.

Andy Pettitte Will Be Wearing Pinstripes Again In 2013!!!

Andy Pettitte Will Be Wearing Pinstripes Again In 2013!!!

From The New York Daily News:

The decision is in: Andy Pettitte isn’t set to retire just yet.

According to a source,  Pettitte has decided to pitch in 2013, ending his six-week deliberation about  his future.

“He has committed to playing next year,” the source  said.

Now it’s up to  Brian Cashman and Pettitte’s agent, Jim Murray, to hammer out a deal for the  lefthander. Sources said the Yankees  are expected to give Pettitte $10-11 million next season, a  substantial raise from the $2.5 million he earned in 2012 after coming out of  retirement.

Although Pettitte hadn’t made any official decision before  Tuesday, the fact that the 40-year-old recently began working out to see how his  body felt was an indication that he had received the blessing of his wife and  children to pitch next season.

The Yankees are also getting closer to a  deal with Mariano Rivera, who could be signed by the end of the week. The  Yankees have focused solely on their pitching staff this offseason, already  locking up Hiroki Kuroda with a one-year, $15 million deal.

It remains  to be seen how much money the Yankees guarantee the 43-year-old closer, who is  coming back after missing the final five months of the 2012 season with a torn  ACL in his right knee. Rivera, who just completed a two-year, $30 million deal,  could receive a lower guaranteed salary plus incentives that could increase the  deal to his previous level.

Once Pettitte and Rivera are signed, Cashman  will turn his attention to right field and catcher, the Yankees’ two positional  vacancies at next week’s Winter Meetings.

The Yankees would like to have  the Pettitte and Rivera deals done before the meetings kick off in Nashville  next Monday, giving them an idea of how much money they have left in the budget  to fill the other two positions and also build a bench.

Bringing back  Pettitte and Rivera would complete the first phase of the Yankees’ offseason  plan, completing their rotation and solidifying their bullpen for the upcoming  season.

Russell  Martin remains the team’s top choice behind the plate, though a  source said they have yet to make any offers to the free agent. Martin has met  with multiple teams interested in his services, though most believe he will wind  up back in the Bronx.

A report out of Japan Tuesday said Ichiro Suzuki  had agreed to a $5 million contract to remain with the Yankees, but a source  said the two sides haven’t even discussed potential contract terms. In fact, the  Yankees haven’t made an offer to any position player.

2010 Topps Heritage ‘Core Four’ Starring Pettitte, Posada, Jeter, and Rivera

2010 Topps Heritage ‘Core Four’ Starring Pettitte, Posada, Jeter, and Rivera

In November of 2009, I wrote a post on this blog titled ‘Ranking The Yankees Core Four’.  You can read that here.

This card of the ‘Core Four’ came out a year later as part of the 2012 Topps Heritage set.


And now, almost three seasons later, a lot has changed.

Posada has retired.

Pettitte has retired.  And un-retired.

Rivera suffered a crippling injury and is doing rehab with the hopes of a 2013 comeback.

Jeter has gotten better.  Much better!

So, after reviewing my original story, I know that my rankings of 3 and 4 would not change.  But as for the #1 spot, it is hard to not re-think that.  Jeter has been on a tear since capturing his 3,000th hit and his legend only continues to grow.  And sadly, Mariano Rivera has been unable to compete.

I may have to officially switch 1 & 2.

What do you think??

Andy Pettitte To Start For Yankees Today Versus Seatlle Mariners

Andy Pettitte To Start For Yankees Today Versus Seatlle Mariners

By HOWIE RUMBERG | The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP)  Andy Pettitte will be back on the mound in the Bronx on Sunday, and the New York Yankees are hoping he can again be a reliable presence in their rotation.

Pettitte is set to start against the Seattle Mariners in his first major league outing since retiring after the 2010 postseason.

”I think it will be a great day at the Stadium,” manager Joe Girardi said.

The lefty, who turns 40 next month, returned to the team in spring training and has made four minor league starts. Even though Pettitte was shaky over five innings in a Triple-A start Sunday, general manager Brian Cashman says the time is right.

”I think everybody’s in agreement that he’s not going to really benefit from any more time down there,” Cashman said.

One thing the Yankees management does agree on is the rotation needs help. Expected to be a strong part of the team after the addition of Hiroki Kuroda and Michael Pineda in the offseason, the Yankees’ rotation has struggled this to a 5.54 ERA and a .292 opponents’ batting average – only Minnesota and Colorado have worse averages against.

Pineda is out for season following shoulder surgery and Freddy Garcia was demoted to the bullpen. Rookie David Phelps is scheduled to make his second start against Tampa Bay on Wednesday, then is a likely candidate to return to the bullpen. But Girardi would not say whose spot Pettitte will take.

Pettitte is 240-138 in 13 years with the Yankees and three with Houston. He was a steady force in the Yankees’ rotation for five World Series championships and is a fan favorite as one of the Core Four with Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Jorge Posada.

Cashman, though, is trying to be realistic in his expectations for Pettitte, who will be making his first big league start in 573 days, since Game 3 of the AL championship series against Texas on Oct. 18, 2010.

”There’s still the unknown,” Cashman said. ”There’s a gap between what the old Andy Pettitte is and what we’re going to get? I just don’t know yet. But we’re looking forward to adding another healthy arm to the mix here because depth has been challenged and some of our healthy starters inconsistent. It would be nice to obviously start pulling together a string of consistently strong starts by all of our starters one through five and, hopefully, that could include Andy.”

Pettitte already has completed his testimony at Roger Clemens’ trial in Washington, D.C. so that shouldn’t weigh in his mind. He will be facing one of only two AL teams he doesn’t have a winning record against: He’s 11-11 against Seattle and 8-8 versus Cleveland.

His locker – the same one he occupied in his last season with the Yankees – is filling with gear that includes 10 pairs of footwear and a full mail basket. Pettitte will be working out in Westchester, where he has a New York home, until he is added to the big league roster Sunday.

Tampa Bay rays manager Joe Maddon thinks Pettitte will have an immediate positive influence on the team regardless of his performance in his first few starts.

”You can’t underestimate what he’s going to do for the clubhouse being minus the other guy,” Maddon said, referring to closer Mariano Rivera, who is likely out for the season with a torn knee ligament.

Cashman said there had been a complication with Rivera’s medical exams Monday in New York but wouldn’t say what it was. Rivera saw team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad at New York Presbyterian Hospital and by Dr. Russell Warren, a knee specialist at the Hospital for Special Surgery.

Rivera’s agent, Fernando Cuza, said Dr. David Altchek, who performed surgery on the pitcher’s shoulder following the 2008 season, also looked at him.

”It’s something I think Mo will talk to you guys about,” Cashman said. ”It doesn’t affect anything for next year.”

He did say that the injury sustained while shagging fly balls last week in Kanasas City is fixable.

”It’s all about next year,” Cashman said.

Andy Pettitte Is Coming Back To The Yankees!!


TAMPA, Fla. — Andy Pettitte is coming back to the Yankees. The 240-game winner signed a Minor League contract on Friday and will slip his old No. 46 back on in an attempt to restart his career.

The contract is worth $2.5 million, YES Network’s Jack Curry reported.

Pettitte, 39, did not pitch in 2011 and had already made two visits to the Yankees’ Spring Training camp this year as a guest instructor, throwing batting practice and saying that he was keeping his left arm in shape by tossing to his children.

Speaking at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Feb. 27, Pettitte said that he was content with his decision to retire but believed he could make a comeback if he so desired.

“I’m sure I could,” Pettitte said that day. “You start training, working out and getting yourself into shape, I’d imagine you could. I retired, I felt, after one of my better years. I felt like I was at the point where I just kind of knew what I was doing mechanically out there on the mound. I retired to go home and be with my family.”

A five-time World Series winner with the Yankees — in 1996, 1998-2000 and 2009 — Pettitte announced his retirement in a news conference at Yankee Stadium on Feb. 4, 2011, saying that he no longer felt the drive to put the uniform on for another season.

That apparently changed, as Pettitte tried his old uniform on for size at the team’s training complex, commenting at the time how odd it felt to be dressing in the coaches’ room instead of alongside teammates like Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and CC Sabathia.

Pettitte pitched 13 of his 16 big league seasons with the Yankees, spending 2004-06 in his native Houston, pitching for the Astros. The left-hander is the all-time leader in postseason wins (19), starts (42) and innings pitched (263). He is tied for second in postseason strikeouts (173) with Roger Clemens, 26 behind John Smoltz.

His 203 victories as a Yankee rank third in franchise history, behind Hall of Famers Whitey Ford (236) and Red Ruffing (231), and his 1,823 strikeouts are second, only 133 behind Ford’s 1,956. He was an All-Star in 2010, when he went 11-3 with a 3.28 ERA in 21 starts despite missing two months with a left groin injury.

’30-YOC Top Ten Lists’ – ‘Top Ten Recently Retired Hall Of Fame Signed Baseballs On My Want List’

’30-YOC Top Ten Lists’ – ‘Top Ten Recently Retired Hall Of Fame Signed Baseballs On My Want List’

If you missed my last list, I showed off the ‘Top Ten’ baseballs I would like from players that are in the Hall of Fame.  If you want to re-visit that post, you can do so by clicking here.

For this round, I will show you the ‘Top Ten’ guys in the recently retired list that I would like to go after as well.  And while I plan on waiting to attack until I can get the HOF inscription, I am still eager to go after these guys.

And while some of these players may not get into Cooperstown unless they buy a ticket, they will all (hopefully) make an appearance in my signed baseball collection!!

So, here we go….

Honorable Mentions – Jeff Bagwell, Mike Piazza, Trevor Hoffman, Andy Pettitte, Rafael Palmeiro, Manny Ramirez, and Curt Schilling.

10 - Mike Lowell

9 – Barry Larkin

8 – Roger Clemens

7 – Tom Glavine

6 – Randy Johnson

5 – Craig Biggio

4 – John Smoltz

3 - Frank Thomas

2 – Ken Griffey Jr.

1 – Greg Maddux

Nice list, huh?

I snuck in a few guys like Lowell and Schilling.  And while I don’t belive that either will be highly considered for membership at the Hall of Fame, I do really like them and respect their careers.

Next up – the ‘Top Ten Signed Baseballs I Would Like Of Active Players’.

Stay tuned and thanks for reading!!!

Voting For 1: Trevor Hoffman OR Andy Pettitte

Voting For 1:  Trevor Hoffman OR Andy Pettitte

OK, so I realize that nobody is holding a gun to your head.  And I also realize that if you had a vote as a member of the Baseball Writer’s of America that you can make your own decisions and either vote for both, one, or neither of these two recently retired pitchers.

But this is blog-land, and here we force issues, make up stories, and love our sport.

So, my question for you tonight is simple – If you had to pick one, and only one of these guys, would you vote for Trevor Hoffman or Andy Pettitte to be enshrined at Cooperstown??

Within the last few weeks, I have debated the issue for each player and their potential candidacy for Hall of Fame election in five years.  If you want to recap those great posts, you can read the one I did on Trevor Hoffman by clicking here, and then follow that up with my Andy Pettitte story here.

But now, putting their careers on paper and side-by-side I would love to see which way the pendulum swings when you are forced to cast just one vote.

Here are their respective numbers:

  Hoffman Pettitte
Wins 61 240
Losses 75 138
Saves 601 0
K’s 1133 2251
K’s/9 IP 9.4 6.6
ERA 2.87 3.88
All-Star 7 3
Cy Young (2)2nd Place (1)2nd Place
Seasons 18 16
Playoffs 4 13
WS Titles 0 5

And while I fully understand that it is not easy to compare a starting pitcher to a closer for multiple reasons, I think that you can easily match these guys up to the current crop of recently retired pitchers to compare numbers and make a decision.

So that is what I will ask you to do now – Make a decision.  And once you have, please leave a comment on this post so I can get your thoughts and tally up the votes.

And since I was the one who started this debate, I will cast my vote now…

Keeping you scrolling…

Andy Pettitte.  Of the two, I find him to be the more accomplished pitcher when it comes to winning.  And while I absolutely value the role of the ‘closer’ more now than what I did five years ago, I still don’t have a single ‘Trevor Hoffman Moment’ that I hold in my memory.  His numbers may be better, but to me Hoffman is second-fiddle to Eckersley, Rivera, Gossage, Fingers, and Lee Smith.  And while Pettitte cannot touch Palmer, Seaver, Ryan, or Gibson, he has won more than all of them – and that says a lot.

Pettitte 1, Hoffman 0.

Cast your vote now!!!

Andy Pettitte – Hall Of Fame Worthy???

Andy Pettitte – Hall Of Fame Worthy???

With the recent announcement that Andy Pettitte is retiring from major league baseball after 16 seasons, my first thought was if he is worthy of a Hall of Fame vote.

But the answer to that question is hard to answer with a resounding confidence.

The numbers are solid – 240 wins with 138 losses.  He collected just 2 20-win seasons, but did add another 10 seasons with at least 14 victories.   And while most of his career was played during the era of the specialty reliever, Pettitte threw just 25 complete games and only 4 shutouts.  His career ERA is decent at 3.88, and he has a lifetime strikeout to walk ratio of 2.8:1.

As for the postseason, there is no pitcher that has been as solid.  Boasting 19 career victories and 5 World Series championship rings, Pettitte is the most decorated post-season pitcher of our era.  And second place on this list is a long way off…

As for individual success, Pettitte has earned 2 All-Star selections while finishing in the Top 6 for the Cy Young Award on five different occasions.

And now with the stats and awards out of the way, the question still remains – Is Andy Pettitte worthy of induction into Cooperstown??

My answer – No. 

Sorry Andy, you have been a thrill to watch – and I really have enjoyed watch you build a very strong case for being one of the top pitchers in post-season history.  But that is not enough for me.  For me, you must have been one of the best, if not the best, pitchers in the sport to get that kind of honor.  And while very, very good, I never thought of Andy Pettitte as a team’s ace.  Never winning the Cy Young Award hurts his chances.  He also played for teams that had better pitchers, which put him into the 2nd or 3rd spot on his team’s pitching rotation – never the primary spot…

In five years when Andy Pettitte is officially added to the Hall of Fame ballot, I do hope that he gets 5% of the vote, but I want that for him more as a sign of respect for his championship filled career – not because he belongs in the same class of pitcher that hang their hats at Cooperstown.

Where do you stand on this one?  Yeah or Ney???

Andy Pettitte Ready To Retire From Baseball

Andy Pettitte reportedly has informed the Yankees of his intention to retire and will announce that decision on Friday.

Pettitte’s decision was initially reported by Michael Kay, Yankees television broadcaster and host on ESPN Radio in New York, who cited an unidentified source, and later was reported by SI.com and The Associated Press.

Pettitte, 38, pitched 16 seasons in the Major Leagues, 13 of them with the Yankees. He went 11-3 with a 3.28 ERA but missed two months due to a groin injury. He has 240 career wins, 203 of them with the Yankees. He ranks third in franchise history in victories, behind Hall of Famers Whitey Ford (236) and Red Ruffing (231).

The Yankees have not confirmed or commented on the reports.

Pettitte, who returned to the Yankees in 2007 after three seasons with the Houston Astros, took time after both the 2008 and 2009 seasons before deciding to return rather than retire. He has cited a desire to be with his family at home in Texas as opposed to continuing his career in New York as the factor in his decisions.

Bobbie Dittmeier is an editor/producer for MLB.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
© MLBAM, L.P. 2001-2011.

Ranking The Yankees ‘Core Four’

This little phrase has been resonating in my head for almost two weeks now.

“Core Four”, “Core Four”, “Core Four”, “Core Four”.

I guess that means that I need to do a post about it, huh?? 

It’s harder to rank players while they’re still active.  One phenomenal season by any one of these guys and the rankings could change.  Jorge Posada may decide he wants to pitch next year and if he wins 20 games, the rankings would certainly change.  Mariano Rivera may decide he wants to play Center field next year and if he steals 100 bases, the rankings would certainly change.  Derek Jeter may put on 45 pounds of muscle in the offseason and if he crushes 75 home runs, the rankings would certainly change.  And Andy Pettitte  may decide he wants to play catcher next year and if he throws out every base runner, the rankings would certainly change.  

See what I mean??  Since it is so hard to predict the future of these 4 guys, my rankings will be solely based on what they have done from their debuts in the major leagues through the 2009 post season.

Here we go!!

4.  Jorge Posada – My favorite of the bunch, Posada doesn’t get close to the credit he deserves for driving the Yankees ship for close to 15 years now.  A 5-time All-star and 5-time Silver Slugger winner, most of what Jorge Posada does on the field goes un-noticed.  This guy has been able to adapt and work with new veteran and rookie pitchers almost every season he has been in the league.  He has worked with future Hall of Famers like Roger Clemens and Randy Johnson.  He has worked perennial Cy Young caliber talent like CC Sabathia, Mike Mussina, and Andy Pettitte as well.  Then you add all of the guys that the Yankees have tried to bring in to fill voids, and it is Posada who has taken them in and prepared them for games.  Enough cannot be said for his dedication to his pitching staff – it’s just too obad that it doesn’t show up in the stat sheets.

Posada is closing in on 1,500 career hits and has 243 home runs and 964 RBI.  In 2010, he should be able to eclipse the 1,500 hits, 250 home runs, and 1,000 RBI plateaus with relative ease.  Keeping in mind that he averages 130-140 games a year, and his numbers are pretty solid. 

Owner of 4 World Series championships, Jorge Posada has played in 111 post season contests. 

AG Posada

3.  Andy Pettitte – Pettitte could rank higher on this short list had he not defected to Houston for 3 big league seasons in the mid 2000′s.  A picther with unquestionable talent, Pettitte has finished in the Top 6 for the Cy Young award 5 times in his career.  While doing so, he appears to be getting better with age as well.  In his 15 big league seasons, he has reached double-digit wins 14 times. 

With a career win-loss record of 229-135, one has to wonder if 300 wins is in Pettitte’s future.  At the age of 37 there is a possibility if he remains healthy and wants to pitch for 5-6 more years, but 250-260 is more realistic.  Pettitte will enter the 2010 season with 2,150 career strikeouts on his resume.  2-3 more strong seasons from him and he should have no problem joining the 2,500 K’s Club.

Andy Pettitte owns 5 World Series rings.  He has stared 13 games in the Fall Classic and owns a 5-4 record.  For his post-season career, Pettitte has a 18-9 record.   Just this past season, he took to the mound as the New York Yankees clinched their ALDS, ALCS, and World Series victories!!

AG Pettitte

2.  Derek Jeter – Not enough can be said about the captain of the Yankees.  It is very hard to not like Derek Jeter, and it is almost impossible to not respect his dedication to winning and the city of New York.  The biggest star on a team full of superstars, the Yankees are Jeter’s team.  And it will be this way until he retires from the sport.

The former 1996 Rookie of the Year is the all-time leader for career hits by a Yankee.  And when you review their incredible history, that stat says quite a bit.  Jeter is a 10-time All-star, 4-time Gold Glove winner, and 3-time winner of the Silver Slugger award.  On top of that, he has finished in the Top 10 for the MVP voting 6 times.  Derek Jeter has 2,747 career hits.  At his current pace, he should gain entry into the 3,000 hits club sometime during the middle of the 2011 season.  At the age of just 35 and with 4-5 good years of solid production still left in him, it’s also very possible that Jeter reaches the 300-HR plateau as he currently rests with 224 round trippers.

Derek Jeter owns 5 World Series championship rings.  When the spotlight has been on him, he has shined brightly.  To date, Jeter has a .321 World Series batting average while amassing 50 hits in 38 games.  He has also collected the most hits in post-season history by any player!

AG Jeter

1.  Mariano Rivera – I don’t value the role of the closer as much as the next fan.  But I do marvel at how calm and relaxed Mariano Rivera appears to be each and every time he takes to the field.  In a pressure filled spot, we have all seen countless players attempt to close games.  Some do well, many fail, and only 1 guy truly dominates – and that is Rivera!

In 15 big league seasons, Rivera has collected 526 saves, good for 2nd place all-time.  He also owns a 71-52 record alongside a 2.25 ERA.  In 1,090 innings pitched, Rivera has struck out 1,006 batters while walking just 256.  His career 8.3 K’s/innings pitched and 3.93 K’s/walks ratios are incredibly impressive when you look at how many pressure filled situations these accomplishments have been obtained in.  Rivera is the king of cool – and like his fellow Yankee teammates, he seems to get better with age as well.  In 2009, ‘Mo’ collected his 7th 40+ save season.  A few more of these and 600 career saves looks like an inevitable accomplishment.

Rivera has won the World Series 5 times.  During the Fall Classic, he has recorded 11 saves alongside a 2-1 record.  In 14 seasons in which his teams have made the post-season, Mariano Rivera has closed the game a major league record 39 times.

AG Rivera


So there you have it.  If I had to rank these 4 players on their careers as of today this is where they would place.  Now if you ask me the same question 5 years from now, things could possibly change.  I think that Rivera and Jeter have the top 2 spots locked down regardless of what they do for the rest of their careers, with Pettitte and Posada in a distant 3rd and 4th place.

What is fun to think about are the possible momentus occasions that may be on the way.  Who knows how many more World Series championships these guys will win.  And with Rivera, 600 saves sounds pretty cool.  But for me, the greatest challenge that lies ahead, can be met by Derek Jeter.  If health and time are on his side, I can see Jeter joining the very rare company of the 3,000 hits / 300 home runs / 300 steals club.  And if he does that, I think he easily vaults into the top of the ‘Core 4′ group.

Then the question becomes, where does Jeter rank all-time…  Oh, boy.  Let the debates begin!!!