Burnett's struggles get close inspection

Burnett's struggles get close inspection

LOS ANGELES -- A.J. Burnett had a fresh set of eyes while he threw his bullpen on Wednesday at Chase Field in Phoenix. Bench coach Tony Pena was watching, trying to spot any possible tipping of pitches that might explain Burnett's recent struggles.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi and acting pitching coach Mike Harkey also attended the session, in which they also reviewed video of Burnett's best starts of 2008 and '09 for comparisons.

"There's a reason things are going on," Burnett said. "It's just good to hear different views from everybody else. It was a real positive bullpen."

Burnett starts on Saturday against the Dodgers, and he will be trying to escape a funk that has him 0-4 with a 10.35 ERA in his last four starts, with opponents hitting .337 in those games. There was no definitive verdict on possible pitch tipping, which was a suggestion catcher Jorge Posada made.

"The only thing I can say is that my front side opens so fast that they can see whatever I'm throwing," Burnett said. "We were working on staying closed and driving downhill. I tend to swing a lot, and when I get out of it too quick, I'm sure you can pick up the ball pretty easily."