Closer Wanted, Inquire Within
In two of the Mets last three games, they had a pitcher blow a save. Heading into the ninth with a two run lead, Willie summoned Roberto Hernandez from the bullpen instead of Braden Looper who had only pitched a third of an inning in the last six games heading into last night. You really cannot blame Willie as Looper has blown a save in three of his last five outings and if he felt like winning, chances are it would not be with Looper closing the door. Hernandez has been a life saver this year and contributed more than 99% of us could have imagined, but he has had a decidedly worse half as he has put up a 4.13 ERA, .276 BAA, and a 1.45 WHIP compared to a 1.69 ERA, .192 BAA, and a 1.07 WHIP in the first half.
Aaron Heilman continues to pitch like the best pitcher in the universe since the All-Star break and has a stupid 0.76 ERA, .185 BAA, 10.44 K/9, 2.93 K/BB, and a 1.05 WHIP. He may pout like Marilyn Monroe, but the dude is no diva. As for the rest, I finally got a chance to watch Anderson Hernandez play and he certainly looked overmatched. One game does not mean anything, but when you watch Mike Jacobs and Anderson, you see a hitter in Jacobs who belongs and a hitter in Hernandez who is just not ready. I'm most likely judging from too far small of a sample size, but that is primarily the reason he should be in the lineup everyday from here on out to get a realistic view of what this kid can contribute and how soon. If he continues to show the approach he showed last night and look hauntingly similar to Desi Relaford, it is safe to say a year at AAA will do him well. If he turns out it was just jitters, it would be nice to find that out too.
Speaking of rookie infielders, Ryan Zimmerman was another reason I decided to catch the game yesterday as opposed to plucking toe knuckle hair. Again, a small sample size, but the kid does not swing at bad pitches and was facing a pretty damn good veteran pitcher and did not chase anything he threw out of the zone and Traschel threw some solid pitches many other rookies would have chased. Walking away with three hits out of your team's seven is impressive for anyone, much less a kid who was just drafted in June. His .440/.423/.640 line will not last, but judging by what he did in college, how polished he is, his great ability to not strikeout, and what I saw last night, I believe he can and will hit .300 or above next season for the Nationals. Zimmerman looks like he can be a star.
Playing around with future numbers in make believe land? Irritating. What's that you say? Some people like it? I just need to read the comments of his article? To that I say there are also people who like to have sex with horses and people that actually thought Commander in Chief was a good show to make and put on TV.
However, as it turns out, the Tigers got an assist from Ken Griffey Jr. in signing their top pick.
Griffey helped encourage Maybin after the breakdown in negotiations.
"Ken made sure that disappointment didn't harm any chance of getting this done in the short term. That was his biggest contribution," said Brian Goldberg, Griffey's agent.
Goldberg also is Maybin's adviser.
"Ken stressed to me that this process goes on every year," Maybin said Friday in a news conference via telephone. "He told me to be patient and let things happen and let things go at their own pace."