New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi is considering to put Aroldis Chapman back in the closer role after Dellin Betances surrendered a walk-off home run to Manny Machado in Tuesday's 7-6 Yankee loss.
New York is 3.5 games back of Boston, and Girardi wants to make the right move for the team as they look towards playing postseason baseball in October.
Manny Machado stunned the Yankees and Dellin Betances. pic.twitter.com/baLuxgWT69— SI MLB (@si_mlb) September 6, 2017
The decision making with pitch selection is what concerns Girardi, as Betances threw 20 pitches in the ninth inning with 14 of them being curveballs. He has a fastball that can reach 100 mph, and it may have been a better idea to go with his best pitch more often.
Compared to Chapman, who averaged 102 mph in the nine fastballs he threw during the eighth inning with the fastest coming at 103.1, it might make the most sense for the two pitchers to switch their roles.
Being a closer is not easy, and it takes incredible focus when the pitcher comes to the mound in a save situation. Chapman has done that for the Yankees before, and also for the Reds and Cubs. Betances hasn't had any other previous experience closing, so it may suit him to be the set up man again.
Boston is steady with Craig Kimbrel as their closer, and when October baseball comes around, having a reliable closer in the ninth inning will be sure to gather up some victories. The Yankees have a few weeks to figure it out, but if they don't soon, then the Red Sox may completely take over the division.