The Yankees announced Sunday that Joe Girardi filed a restraining order against AJ Burnett in order to keep the struggling starting pitcher off the team’s postseason roster.
According to court documents, Burnett is not to be within 300 feet of Girardi at any time so not only will Burnett be left off the roster, he will not even be allowed in the dugout. The Yankees have given him the option to sit in the bullpen or purchase a luxury box at his own expense if he wishes to watch his teammates play for the title in person.
“They’ve been at each other’s throat since Joe yanked him in Minnesota,” said an anonymous clubhouse worker. “AJ feels disrespected by his teammates. His teammates feel disrespected by AJ’s numbers. And Joe’s been hitting the heavy bag a lot lately. It’s a total mess.”
The question now is who will replace Burnett in the rotation. The Yankees had hoped Mark Prior would be in pitching shape by the time the division series rolled around, but due to an unfortunate jammed finger on his non-pitching hand, he will miss the next three years. Early reports indicate the Yankees will pitch CC Sabathia Ivan Nova, and then pick the remaining starters out of a hat.
Burnett refused to comment on his future with the Yankees, but didn’t seem too upset as he left Yankee Stadium in his $2.5 million 2011 Bugatti Veryon.
Girardi was tight lipped about the restraining order, but did note that AJ would be hard to replace, asking, “Who is gonna slap his teammates in the face with a pie now?”