Monday, April 20, 2009

Taiwanese Crushed by Terrible Numbers out of the US

Housing starts? Unemployment? Nope, Taiwanese are deeply anxious about Wang Chien-ming's abysmal 34.50 era. Yes, Wang blew his third straight game:
That's the major question lingering in the minds of the vast number of baseball fans about the third defeat of the Taiwan-born ace pitcher of the New York Yankees.

The Yankees starter swallowed his third defeat of the newly opened season after Cleveland Indians scored a 22-4 victory over New York, including 14 runs in the second inning, before more than 45,000 baseball fans Saturday.

Wang gave up 8 runs in the second after striking out three in the first inning. ESPN had a piece on his struggles this week:

The Yankees have been working with Wang on bringing his sinkerball down in the strike zone ever since he lasted a season-high 3 2/3 innings in his first start against Baltimore on April 8. He gave up seven runs in that start and eight in each of his next two outings.

Girardi said Wang's sinker was moving better against the Indians than it had in his first two starts, but batters were fouling those pitches off.

Girardi believes Wang, who was 5-0 in April last year, deserves more leeway than an inexperienced pitcher, but he said the Yankees will have to make a decision about what to do with him soon. He said he hasn't spoken with Wang about it yet.

"It's just difficult to go through, and you got to fight your way out," Girardi said. "We really feel he is capable of doing that. We've got to help him."

Wang's next turn in the rotation is scheduled for Boston on Friday, and his preference is to make the start and work on his motion during regular side sessions.

"I can pitch in that game. I want to pitch," Wang said.

With that ugly ERA, Wang is in danger of being relegated to the minors. And if that happens, what happens to the millions in ad fees he is getting?

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comprock said...

What about the Yankees losing the 20 million fans here in Taiwan if Wang goes to the minors.

Anonymous said...

Wang appears to throw well when relaxed and poorly when "determined". He was so awesome his first couple of years because nothing would rattle him--he was the picture of calm. I'd send him to the minors for a few starts so he can be relaxed again.

CJB said...

Michael: For better or worse, players are still entitled to the money even if they don't perform well.

that's probably a good thing.

Wang signed a one year deal for around 5 million, which is a pretty low-risk deal for both sides.

For an example of a high risk deal gone horribly, wrong, there's Mike Hampton (121 million for 8 years in 2001, missed most of the time and was lousy the rest of it) or Barry Zito (126 million over 7 years for an ineffective starting pitcher).

Comprock: Anytime the Yankees lose fans that's a good think regardless of where they're from. I think it would be good for baseball here, Taiwanese have been fully exposed to MLB now and their interest in Wang will evolve into interest in the whole league and other teams.

CJB said...

Yeah, and if he gets sent to the minors are they gonna stop airing that 15 minute long epic whiskey commericial he's in?