Scenario: The starting pitcher is cruising in total control, 101 pitches thru 8 innings, allowing just three hits and one walk while striking out 6. But because this pitcher is "just" 23 years old, the manager gives him the hook despite a 11-0 lead.
Believe me, I am all for watching the pitch count and innings count for the younger pitchers, but when any pitcher is on cruise control, and the innings/pitches are not high leverage, high stress sort of pitches, it's gotta be OK for the kid to go for the CGSO. What's another 15 or so pitches when he's just throwing fastballs, pitching to contact to get the last 3 outs?
And the best part: Hughes was PISSED to get the hook:
Phil Hughes wanted no part of the handshake that would end his afternoon, not three outs shy of a shutout. But by that time, there also wasn't a whole lot left to prove.
"He didn't want to shake my hand -- he wanted to go back out," Girardi said. "I said, 'You know what, you're going to have plenty of time to get complete games.' I understood he was disappointed, because he wants a complete game. But we're looking at him long-term, not just this start."
Attaboy. Just wish Girardi let him go back out there. If he struggled, yank him. But give him the chance.