After a near two-month search, the Yankees hired Larry Rothschild to fill their vacant pitching coach position. Mr. Rothschild resigned from his position inside the Cubs organization as their Major League pitching coach.
He replaces former Yankee pitching coach Dave Eiland, who took the blame from the Yankees brass for the inconsistent pitching efforts of the previous season.
An important objective for Mr. Rothschild is to fix the lackluster production of the Yankees’ greatest enigma—AJ Burnett.
Mr. Burnett’s poor performance in 2010 was a major factor in the dismissal of Rothschild’s predecessor. Mr. Burnett’s inconsistencies as well as his expensive contract make it nearly impossible to trade him, forcing the Yankees to fix him.
Several experts view the hiring of Rothschild as a maverick choice. The top contenders included former Mets pitching guru (that seems to be the only way anyone ever addresses him) Rick Peterson and former Braves pitching coach Leo Mazzone.
If Rothschild can fix Burnett and improve the rest of the staff, including a young and blossoming Phil Hughes, the move will be lauded as one the best move Yankee GM Brian Cashman makes this offseason.
If he produces mediocre results as Eiland did, the move will be remembered as one of the poorest decisions Mr. Cashman has made in recent years.