26 Outs

I forget who asked the question, but last week a reporter asked Girardi about pitching the entire bullpen in the wild card game instead of using a normal starter. Girardi dismissed the idea, but he essentially did that tonight as the Yankee bullpen recorded an amazing 26 outs in the wild card win.

Think about that for a second. When was the last time a team got 26 outs from their bullpen in a regulation game and won? I’m sure we will hear if it had ever happened in the next few hours, but it is an impressive accomplishment. But it also leaves the Yankees with some huge questions heading into the ALDS.

1- Severino was obviously nervous. 23-year olds in their first playoff appearance get to be that, but when do your pitch him again? He only threw 29 pitches, so he could go Friday, which would set him up to pitch a potential Game 5 on regular rest. After tonight do the Yankees want that or do they give the ball to Tanaka for two ALDS starts?

2- When will Green and Robertson be ready to pitch again and what are the implications of their exhaustion? This is a total guess, but I bet both guys are out until Game 3 of the ALDS and that’s huge. I suspect it means the Yankees will carry at least two extra pitchers, if not three. Tanaka was obviously going to be added to the roster, and now I expect Garcia or Montgomery will and perhaps both, or another arm.

3- The roster gets really interesting if the Yankees go to 13 or even 12 hitters. Clint Frazier is the first casualty, but who goes next? I think it might be Matt Holliday, as Headley offers more flexibility. But after that, who goes? Wade is the one guy who could steal a base late, do the Yankees leave Torreyes off the postseason roster?

Those are big questions for tomorrow, but for now let’s give a lot of credit to the bullpen and to the manager for having the guts to go to the bullpen like he did. He deserves as much credit as anyone.

On to Cleveland for the first “real” postseason series we have seen since 2012.