Thursday, April 14, 2011

Quick Thoughts on Last Night's Game

I have some reactions to last night's game...or some reactions to reactions to last night's game.

Christ Tillman....he was bad. I completely agree. But why would you want to send the guy back to AAA. I'll post his AAA numbers...again.

Lev    W  L W-L%  ERA  G CG SHO    IP   H HR BB  SO  WHIP HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
AAA   19 13 .594 3.06 39  2   2 218.0 205 15 56 193 1.197  0.6  2.3  8.0  3.45

Whatever he does in AAA works for him. Call him a AAAA pitcher but there's no reason for him to go down. He should live or die right here in Baltimore.

That future in Baltimore may lay in the bullpen. And that's just fine with me. He needs to face major league hitter and maybe the pen is the way to go.

But until Brian Matusz comes back, you've got to keep trotting him out there every fifth day. I just got done watching the majority of the Norfolk Tides rotation and it's not pretty.

2011 ERA
Ryan Drese         8.18
Mark Hendrickson  12.50
Michael Ballard    6.00
Rick VandenHurk    6.00

The only starter who looked decent was Troy Patton...and he's on the DL now.

There are no better options. There is no help arriving. Tillman should remain in the rotation until Matusz returns and should pitch somewhere for Baltimore all this season. There are no better options.

About Vlad Guerrero...I have seen some grumbling about Vlad's free swinging ways amongst fans and from the press.

The vast majority of the fans and all of the mainstream media were really enthusiastic about his signing. But the guy has been a free swinger at the plate for 15 seasons and he has built himself a Hall of Fame resume with that approach.

And now you expect him to change it?

Vlad is not going to stop swinging. Game situations don't matter to him. His approach is his approach and he's not suddenly going to become more patient at age 36. The very notion is hilarious.

Of course things would be better if he were more patient. His career would have been more brilliant than it already was if he was more patient. But he's not. He's Vladimir Guerrero. He's what he has always been.

I remember a few years back when Frank Thomas was playing for the Blue Jays and injuries and such forced the manager to move Thomas into the cleanup spot in the lineup. And then Thomas was criticized for not being more aggressive at the plate to "drive in runs" and continuing to take walks. Forget the fact that that is what Frank Thomas was and always was...sometimes people illogically expect different results from the same guy.

I was not in favor of the Guerrero signing but I'll be damned if I'm going to criticize his approach at the plate. It's like being critical of a duck for having webbed feet. He is what he is.

And everybody wanted him. Now you have him.

Finally, quit quoting me stats about how the Orioles are hitting with runners in scoring position. It's a completely meaningless stat. So stop it or I'll have to explain why it's stupid.

OK, resume party...


The Oriole Way said...

I agree that Tillman has nothing left to learn in AAA (and I've been a major advocate of letting him pitch in the big leagues), but another outing like last night's and the club really has no choice. It doesn't matter how much learning he's doing if his stuff isn't good enough, and last night it wasn't. Where did his fastball go?

DempseysArmy said...

But who is the alternative? Until the team gets Matusz back, there are no better options. Really. I've seen them. In my opinion, they have no choice but to leave him in.

Give him 2-3 more starts and see what happens. Move him to the pen after that. It's either that or just give up on him.

I never saw a mid-90's type fastball from Tillman so I don't know. I know he was overthrowing when he first came up but I saw him in AAA three seasons ago and his fastball was low 90's and touching 94 at times. I think he's better not throwing max effort but he has to command it better. Period.