After suffering his fourth loss in five starts this season last night against the Tigers, Phil Franchise fell to 0-4 with a 9.00 ERA.

Is it time to demote him to the minors? I don’t think it is. My brother Trevor commented last week that he should be taken out of the rotation.

Do I think the Yankees will make the playoffs this season? More likely no, but I won’t be surprised if they did. For the big reason of the development of Hughes, Chamberlain and Kennedy, the Yankees need to be patient. R.E.A.L.L.Y. patient.

I take every Hughes and Kennedy loss in stride, knowing it’s part of their development and adjustment to the majors. But at what point will the towel be thrown in?

It depends on how much Hank will take. The Yankees have a plethora of reasons why they should keep on going like this — namely injuries. A-Rod just went on the DL for the first time since 2000. Jorge’s on the DL as well. The Yankees have had numerous players suffer from various setbacks.

Courtesy of PeteAbe, there have been nine Yankees (not including Chamberlain’s bereavement leave) on the injured list. That’s why Hank and Cashman need to be patient. They should be fortunate the Yankees are close to the top of the AL East, especially at how pitiful Boston and Toronto are playing. (Plus the Yankees are perennial slow starters except for the 1998 season.)

Hughes has had an excellent minor league career. Yes, he nearly pitched a no-hitter last year (so did Buchholz for that matter, but he actually pitched one), and he won a playoff game last year. This is his first full year in the majors and he is the youngest pitcher in major league baseball. Give him a break. I’d rather have him lose 10 games and improve his learning curve than be sent back to the minors. It won’t do him any good to go back — let’s say until June — and work on his confidence. I say give Hughes one more month. The same with Kennedy.

Joseph at RiverAveBlues had this same discussion earlier today, and I am inclined to agree with his views. Looking at the comments, people say we should have gotten Santana instead. They cite the time it will take to develop the pitchers (Kennedy, Chamberlain, Hughes — give them 2-3 years). By then, the lineup will be in its late 30s (Jeter 37, A-Rod 36, Posada 39 for starters), but we have a young squad also waiting in Melky, Cano, Austin Jackson, Jose Tabata, and others in the minors. These players will accompany the departing payroll monsters and give us a chance to get to Sabiatha and Teixeira.

The bottom line? Let Hughes learn on his own, but give him guidance and support to master pitching at the majors.

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