April 26 – Happy Birthday Shawn Kelley

shawn-kelleyComing out of their 2013 spring training camp, I thought the Yankees made a mistake going north without former Mariner closer David Aardsma and choosing to take along today’s Pinstripe Birthday Celebrant instead. Granted, the new season is less than a month old, but thus far, right-hander Shawn Kelley has not pitched especially well in his seven appearances in pinstripes.  Meanwhile though, Aardsma is not getting a chance to show if he’s again ready for prime time because he  started this season pitching in the Marlins’ farm system.

Like Aardsma, Kelley pitched out of the Mariner bulllpen before he came to New York, but not as a closer. When announcing they were cutting Aardsma and going with Kelley, Yankee manager Joe Girardi and GM Brian Cashman explained they wanted a reliever who could pitch more than one inning. If it was up to me, I’d rather have the pitcher who can get the biggest outs in my bullpen instead of the one who can throw the most pitches. No disrespect to Kelley, its just that Aardsma saved over 30 games twice with Seattle before injuring his arm and if that arm is fully healed, the Yanks had enough other pitchers in their pen to not have to extend his appearances beyond an inning.

Kelley turns 29-years-old today.He was born in Louisville, KY and was Seattle’s 13th round draft pick in 2007. He spent his first four big league seasons in Seattle and was traded to New York in February of 2013 for Abraham Almonte, a 23-year-old outfield prospect.  Though he got off to a slow start this season, he did pick up his first win as a Yankee against Toronto last week and two nights ago he pitched two scoreless inning against the Rays. I’d love to see him get hot and make me completely wrong about the management decision that got him on this Yankee team.

He shares his April 26th birthday with this long-ago hard-partying Yankee starting pitcher,  this former pitch from the 1950’s who gained most of his fame pitching for another team and this one too.

2013 NYY 4 2 .667 4.39 57 0 13 0 0 0 53.1 47 28 26 8 23 71 1.313
2014 NYY 0 1 .000 2.38 12 0 8 0 0 4 11.1 10 3 3 0 3 12 1.147
6 Yrs 14 12 .538 3.69 189 0 52 0 0 4 192.2 178 85 79 27 65 205 1.261
SEA (4 yrs) 10 9 .526 3.52 120 0 31 0 0 0 128.0 121 54 50 19 39 122 1.250
NYY (2 yrs) 4 3 .571 4.04 69 0 21 0 0 4 64.2 57 31 29 8 26 83 1.284
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/27/2014.

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