Sunday, August 27, 2006

Pitching woes should make for an interesting off season

The Douglas from Obstructed Seats has posted a post about Excuses for this team.

The following is part of our ongoing conversations about the pitching woes and hopefully where the pitching staff should be headed in the off season.

Oh I agree, the pitching staff was put together with baling wire and hopes and dreams.

If you go back to almost any of my posts on Clement you will see I have never liked him, in fact I call him the DIHL for Deer in head lights. He was and is an inning eater though and that does help the bullpen.

As for Wells, I think he has shown that he is still a good quality starter, if you can get him out there. Unfortunately for him, his last year (or so he says) was a bit unlucky and a bit expected since he has never been Mr. Jack Lalaine about taking care of his body.

Lester is a rookie and the best thing about rookies, to paraphrase a well known former basketball coach is that they become sophomores. The question is will he become a Lily or a Zito?

As for the up and down Beckett, I have taken the wait and see attitude, since he has shown me enough good things to make me want to believe that he is the ace of the future. I also like his competitiveness, which successful power pitchers have to have.

Wakefield is what he is, a knuckleball pitcher which means when his ball is fluttering it is almost impossible to hit, but if it is not knuckling then watch out in the bleachers. The age factor with a knuckler is also less important as long as they are aerobically fit. The rib injury was just a little freakish as it seems he hurt it while sleeping?

Of course with the way this season is quickly imploding in front of our eyes, it will be interesting to see what happens to the pitching staff in the off season. Right now I am guessing that Clement will be shipped off with the Sox picking up a sizable portion of his contract. A big run will be made for Zito, but with Boros being his agent you just don’t know (Kevin Millwood anyone). The other free agent pitchers don’t impress me.

Right now for the 2007 season I see our starters being Schilling, Beckett, Wakefield and Lester. It is possible that Papelbon may become the fifth starter even though he has been effective as a closer. However, you have to have a solid starting rotation so that you can get to the closer and too often Papelbon has been sitting in the pen with no chance to come in, see saturday night for the latest of that. What may make the difference is who they can get as either a starter or closer type in the off season.

As for the bullpen, look for it to be Foulke, Delcarmen, Hansen, Tavaras and Snyder plus some other type of middle relievers that they find on the market.

Right now all I can say is bring on the football season as both my Razorbacks and Cowboys look to be decent this year.

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