Friday, August 1, 2008

sweet dreams

It's the middle of the night. I was lying in bed (after getting up to use the bathrooom, and now I can't sleep) and ridiculous thoughts were racing through my head. 

I can't seem to stop thinking about our bullpen... 

Randy Flores was sent down to AAA to "figure things out," so that leaves us short on left-handed relievers. 

Ron Villone, who is very effective when used in the specialist role, but less so if he's called upon to face two, three, or more batters, is our only true LOOGY

Kyle McClellan could be considered a LOOGY, except he's a righty. (His numbers against left-handed hitters are actually better than against right-handers.) 

And then there's Springer, another righty, who can basically sit down any batter you put him in front of, and is too valuable as a clean-up pitcher (my phrase) to be used in the closer role, apparently. 

The rest of our bullpen consists of Kelvin Jimenez, Brad Thompson, Frankie, and Izzy

Thompson is the long reliever, and he has earned his stripes in that capacity. Without him, I can imagine several situations this season that could have gotten well out of hand. 

Jimenez, a guy with serious control issues who gets lucky sometimes (this being the only reason his ERA isn't in the double or triple-digits), is called on basically when everyone else is tired or when it's early and the better pitchers are being saved for later. 

Franklin just recently collapsed under the pressure of the closer's role, and now hasn't pitched since Izzy was officially penciled back in to that position. Tony's gotta be careful about when he puts Frankie back out there, because while he needs to show that he has confidence in him, he certainly can't just throw him into a situation where one or two runs would lose the game. 

And then there's the closer. Izzy needs eight saves for 300 in his career. It will certainly be interesting to see what happens, that is, if there's ever another save situation. He hasn't pitched since the announcement of his return to the closer's role either. 

I'm back to bed now, but if anything else occurs to me, I'll smother myself with the pillow.