Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Twilight Zone

ok, so Theo Epstein and the Sox made some obvious gambles this past off-season, resting much of their success on injured stars that needed a place to show they were healed and ready to contribute to a winner...

Cue up future HOF John Smoltz. I thought it would work out, thought he would emerge from rehab time and contribute to a run into the postseason...I WAS RIGHT! I only picked the wrong team. Smoltz got smashed in Boston and proceeded to get released/traded and he gets the ball in St. Louis a couple of times now and has one win with a 0.82 ERA and a .727 WHIP. Pretty fancy numbers on a small sample size. Compare them to his 8 starts in Boston, his 8.32 ERA and his 1.70 WHIP. Little bigger sample size but it's like he entered the twilight zone (NL) and voila, his slider slides a little more, his splitter splits a little more. As a (secondary) Brave fan I am somewhat happy for the man...good for him, hope he continues to help out the Cardinals and make a run for another ring.

Cue up Brad Penny. I had doubts about his signing with Boston but felt if he could eat innings and be the 4th or 5th guy that would be fine. He is a big man and I thought big men last long in games...silly me. In his 24 starts with Boston before being released outright, he dazzled the AL to a tune of 5.61 ERA and 1.534 WHIP while averaging 5.4 innings per start. Neither successful nor an inning eater he didn't really pan out. After getting released there is no reason for another team not to take a chance on you, especially if your #5 guy is worse. So the Giants reach into the portal and pull Mr. Brad Penny through to the twilight zone (NL) and today he made his first start. Guess what? He pitched a very economical 8 innings, giving up zero (0) runs on 5 hits and a single walk. I thought I better get the calculator and check how many times he made it to or through the 8th inning for the Sox this year...guess what, his longest outing in a RedSox uni was 6 2/3 innings on May 20th. Bravo to you too Brad Penny. You have found the fountain of youth and it's called the National Pitchers Ready to Retire League.

Ok, so in my next life I want to be an agent for ML pitchers, guess what teams I'm going to negotiate with whenever I have a chance? Yep, NL teams. Seems simple enough. Name 3 (and I will give you 2) dominant NL pitchers that had success in the AL after the NL for more than a single year? C'mon? Pedro, yep. Schilling, yep. Nolan Ryan? Nah, he was dominant but he never dominated. Tom Seaver? Nope, too late in the AL. I cannot think of another, can you?