For anyone overwhelmed and surprised by A.J. Burnett’s early exit in Monday night’s World Series Game Five against the Phillies, here is some Earth-shattering news:
I’m not sure how this fact has been ignored to such extremes that not only is it not common knowledge, but two major league baseball teams have seen fit to invest tens of millions of dollars in the notion that it is not true. Over the course of his 11 seasons in the big leagues, Burnett has occasionally succeeded in not totally sucking, but for the most part it is the rule at this point.
In 2009, his first season as a Yankee, Burnett led the American League in two categories: walks and wild pitches. It was his second career wild pitch title and fourth top-ten finish in both. Burnett’s reverse-Bondsian walk total helped propel his WHIP (number of baserunners allowed per nine innings pitched) into 26th place among the 30 AL pitchers who qualified for rate stats. All of this while pocketing nearly $17 million this season. What a dick.