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So Which Yankees Starting Pitchers Can Handle the Bat?

The Yankees play their next six games in National League parks, which means that for the next six days, they can't use the designated hitter. But which Yankees pitchers can actually handle the bat, and which will be happy if they can just execute the occasional sacrifice bunt? Let's take a look, in order of rotation.

FREDDY GARCIA






























































































































































































































































































































































































Year Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1999 SEA AL 34 6 4 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 1 .250 .250 .250 .500
2000 SEA AL 21 6 3 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 .667 .667 .667 1.333
2001 SEA AL 34 9 7 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 4 .143 .143 .143 .286
2002 SEA AL 34 7 6 0 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 .333 .333 .500 .833
2003 SEA AL 33 5 5 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 .200 .200 .200 .400
2004 TOT AL 31 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000
2004 SEA AL 15 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000
2004 CHW AL 16 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2005 CHW AL 33 9 7 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
2006 CHW AL 33 6 5 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 .200 .200 .200 .400
2007 PHI NL 11 22 17 1 4 1 0 0 2 2 7 .235 .300 .294 .594
2008 DET AL 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2009 CHW AL 9 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2010 CHW AL 28 6 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
12 Seasons 304 80 63 1 12 2 0 0 4 2 20 .190 .212 .222 .434
162 Game Avg. 162 43 34 1 6 1 0 0 2 1 11 .190 .212 .222 .434
AL (11 yrs) 293 58 46 0 8 1 0 0 2 0 13 .174 .174 .196 .370
NL (1 yr) 11 22 17 1 4 1 0 0 2 2 7 .235 .300 .294 .594
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/17/2011.


Garcia didn't have a hit in five Interleague at-bats last year and didn't bat at all in either 2008 or 2009. His last hit? As a member of the Phillies in 2007, when he batted .235 in seventeen at-bats. (That season in Philadelphia — in which he made eleven starts — was the only one of his thirteen-year career on a National League team.)


A.J. BURNETT










































































































































































































































































































































































Year Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1999 FLA NL 7 17 17 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 10 .118 .118 .118 .235
2000 FLA NL 13 30 25 3 7 1 1 1 3 3 10 .280 .357 .520 .877
2001 FLA NL 27 59 50 0 4 1 0 0 0 1 27 .080 .115 .100 .215
2002 FLA NL 31 69 57 1 6 2 0 1 3 5 28 .105 .177 .193 .370
2003 FLA NL 4 9 7 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 3 .143 .333 .143 .476
2004 FLA NL 20 37 29 4 4 0 0 0 1 0 11 .138 .138 .138 .276
2005 FLA NL 32 79 68 3 10 2 2 1 2 1 34 .147 .171 .279 .451
2006 TOR AL 21 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
2007 TOR AL 25 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 .000
2008 TOR AL 35 4 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
2009 NYY AL 33 5 5 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .200 .200 .200 .400
2010 NYY AL 33 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000
2011 NYY AL 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
13 Seasons 282 317 267 12 35 6 3 3 9 12 127 .131 .174 .210 .384
162 Game Avg. 162 182 153 7 20 3 2 2 5 7 73 .131 .174 .210 .384
NL (7 yrs) 134 300 253 12 34 6 3 3 9 12 123 .134 .180 .217 .397
AL (6 yrs) 148 17 14 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 4 .071 .071 .071 .143
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/17/2011.


Burnett played seven seasons for the Marlins between 1999 and 2005, though he hit just .134 in 253 N.L. at-bats. Still, that's a higher average than he has in Interleague games as an American League pitcher: In fourteen at-bats with the Blue Jays and Yankees, he has just one hit — a single off Florida's Josh Johnson in 2009.


CC SABATHIA






















































































































































































































































































































































Year Tm Lg G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2001 CLE AL 33 5 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 .000
2002 CLE AL 33 6 5 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 .200 .333 .200 .533
2003 CLE AL 31 6 6 1 3 0 0 0 0 0 1 .500 .500 .500 1.000
2004 CLE AL 30 4 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 .250 .250 .250 .500
2005 CLE AL 31 6 6 1 2 1 0 1 4 0 1 .333 .333 1.000 1.333
2006 CLE AL 28 9 9 0 2 0 0 0 2 0 5 .222 .222 .222 .444
2007 CLE AL 34 3 3 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 .667 .667 .667 1.333
2008 TOT MLB 35 53 51 4 12 2 0 2 7 0 12 .235 .235 .392 .627
2008 CLE AL 18 3 3 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 2 .333 .333 1.333 1.667
2008 MIL NL 17 50 48 3 11 2 0 1 6 0 10 .229 .229 .333 .562
2009 NYY AL 34 4 4 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 1 .250 .250 .250 .500
2010 NYY AL 34 5 5 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 .200 .200 .200 .400
10 Seasons 323 101 97 7 25 3 0 3 14 1 26 .258 .265 .381 .647
162 Game Avg. 162 51 49 4 13 2 0 2 7 1 13 .258 .265 .381 .647
AL (10 yrs) 306 51 49 4 14 1 0 2 8 1 16 .286 .300 .429 .729
NL (1 yr) 17 50 48 3 11 2 0 1 6 0 10 .229 .229 .333 .562
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/17/2011.


Of the three Yankees starters who will step into the Wrigley Field batter's box this weekend, Sabathia's the one to keep an eye on. Since Interleague Play began, Sabathia is one of only two American League pitchers to hit two home runs, and his respectable .258 career batting average (albeit in just 97 at-bats) is higher than teammate Andruw Jones's. Sabathia's actually gone deep three times in his career — he also hit one while with Milwaukee in 2008 — and when he hits the ball, it can go awfully far: While with the Indians in 2008, he hit a 440-foot home run at Dodger Stadium. Said Sabathia during the 2009 World Series (in which he went 0-for-3): "I'm trying to hit a homer. If I hit a single, I hit a single. I hit a double, I hit a double. I'm trying to go deep."


IVAN NOVA
Nova didn't pitch in any Interleague road games last year, and thus has never batted in the big-leagues.


BRIAN GORDON















































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Year Tm Lev PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO BA OPS
1997 Diamondbacks Rk 232 219 27 54 18 4 4 46 9 62 .247 .692
1998 South Bend A 493 468 46 131 23 6 8 61 14 100 .280 .708
1999 South Bend A 195 184 21 39 9 3 0 17 9 35 .212 .545
2000 High Desert A+ 531 476 98 148 26 13 12 66 47 107 .311 .867
2001 Lancaster A+ 427 392 74 119 21 10 16 70 26 100 .304 .876
2002 El Paso AA 535 477 73 137 32 9 10 67 36 111 .287 .798
2003 Tucson AAA 489 449 58 119 20 7 13 70 33 93 .265 .742
2004 Salt Lake AAA 517 475 80 123 24 4 22 70 30 145 .259 .771
2005 Salt Lake AAA 374 340 50 94 25 4 17 55 25 101 .276 .847
2006 Round Rock AAA 340 303 48 73 21 3 16 59 28 110 .241 .798
2007 2 Teams AAA-AA 15 15 2 4 0 2 0 6 0 7 .267 .800
2007 Corpus Christi AA 6 6 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 1 .167 .333
2007 Round Rock AAA 9 9 2 3 0 2 0 5 0 6 .333 1.111
2008 3 Teams AA-AAA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2008 Frisco AA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2008 Corpus Christi AA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2008 Oklahoma AAA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2009 Oklahoma City AAA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2010 Lehigh Valley AAA 5 4 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 .250 .500
2011 Lehigh Valley AAA 8 8 2 4 0 0 1 3 0 1 .500 1.375
15 Seasons 4161 3810 580 1046 219 65 119 590 257 972 .275 .781
AAA (9 seasons) AAA 1742 1588 241 417 90 20 69 262 116 456 .263 .788
AA (3 seasons) AA 541 483 73 138 32 9 10 68 36 112 .286 .792
A (2 seasons) A 688 652 67 170 32 9 8 78 23 135 .261 .662
A+ (2 seasons) A+ 958 868 172 267 47 23 28 136 73 207 .308 .871
Rk (1 season) Rk 232 219 27 54 18 4 4 46 9 62 .247 .692
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 6/17/2011.


Joe Girardi said yesterday that Gordon was "impressive" enough to earn a start in Cincinatti, and he has plenty of experience as a hitter. He's never batted in the big-leagues — he's thrown just nine and a third innings in the majors — but since he played the outfield in the minors before converting to a pitcher, he has more than 3,800 minor-league at bats. He hit .275 in his minor-league career with 119 home runs, 590 RBI, and an OPS of .781. He had more than 300 at-bats as recently as 2006, and in eight at-bats this season for triple-A Lehigh Valley, had four hits, including a home run.

If any of these guys does get a hit, by the way, let's just hope they're careful while running the bases.

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Photo: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images