Saturday, June 17, 2006


Pitchers, it seems to me, are like anyone else; they have good days and bad days. Sometimes they have their stuff, and sometimes they don't. One would think that the main job of the manager, pitching coach and bullpen coach is to figure out whether a guy has it or not in any given day.

Based on this, I've often wondered about managers who like to bring in lots of relief pitchers. It seems to me that by doing that, you are simply increasing the chance that you'll bring in a pitcher who is having a bad day. Maybe, just maybe, the fact that a particular relief pitcher has his stuff today is more important that the lefty-righty matchup, or whether he is coming to bat the next inning.

I don't think Frank ever considers this. This is an obvious second-guess, but I was really hoping at the time that he would have left Jon Rauch in last night after he struck out A-Rod and Cano to end the seventh. Those were huge outs, and Rauch has been struggling lately, I thought it would have been a good confidence boost to send him out there in the 8th to help keep the lid on the game.

But, of course, that didn't happen. Frank, as usual, brought in three more relievers, none of whom had anything, and we blew the game. Frank appears to expect that all of his relievers must be able to perform at the highest level in every game. While that is a reasonable expectation in general for professionals who get paid a lot of money to play this game, the reality of our bullpen requires more nuanced management that appears beyond the ken of our current skipper.


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