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mdrunning last won the day on February 1 2007

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About mdrunning

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  1. Orioles staff ERA in 2016 with Wieters: 3.98 in 980 1/3 innings. With other catchers: 4.72 in 451 1/3 innings. What's ironic is when the Orioles started out 22-10, and the starters were doing fairly well, there were the occasional references to "the type of catching we haven't had around here in some time." Fast forward to late July, with the same people pitching and the same people catching, and that talk taken a noticeable leave of absence. I don't think you can paint the problems of the rotation with one broad stroke because you're talking about five individuals, not a five-man aggregate with the exact same strengths and weaknesses. The problem with the different catcher theory is that we really don't know who deserves credit/blame for calling a particular pitch: the catcher, the pitcher or the coaching staff. There's also no way of knowing how many times a pitcher overrules a catcher and opts for another pitch. (Rule No. 1 for pitchers: Never throw a pitch you don't want to throw.) And how many times did a catcher call the right pitch in a particular situation and the pitcher simply executed it poorly? There are pitchers who like to take ownership of their own game, and yet there are others who simply don't want to clutter their minds by over-thinking pitches and thus trust their catcher to call the proper pitch. It all comes down to pitchers making quality, competitive pitches, something Oriole starters simply haven't done much of this season. Until there's some more empirical data regarding pitcher/catcher combinations, I don't there's much of a connection to be made.
  2. Add to the list below Jeremy Hellickson and Jason Vargas (currently third in the AL in ERA). Miggy is also a free agent after this season, but unfortunately for him, is not having a particularly good year thus far.
  3. Nice win today, but a 5-5 homestand coming off the All-Star Break isn't exactly what the doctor ordered.
  4. I would agree with you on the former, but only to a certain extent. Many of these pitchers were drafted directly out of high school, so it would be fine to let them be themselves as long as they continued to face high school hitters. (As an example, one criticism of Bundy early in his career was his inability to hold runners. Well, that's understandable because he was so dominant in high school, he rarely had to worry about baserunners since there were precious few of them to begin with.) The point is that many of these guys have never pitched professionally and therefore, have no idea how to do so. It's OK to give them some rope, but at the same time make sure they don't hang themselves with it. I think the bigger question is here is whether Oriole pitchers are being developed along a very narrow path and are thus being dictated to more and educated less. That's a rather myopic approach (and this is just my guess), particularly if they don't measure up to a particular yardstick and are consequently shipped elsewhere.
  5. The Orioles have had this problem with evaluating and developing starting pitchers for some time, certainly enough to make one question why it's such an issue. The biggest problem is when the farm system is thin to begin with, whenever one of these guys we've traded performs well for another club, then the dilemma becomes magnified. The biggest question is where the problem begins and how to fix it. I don't know the answer to the former and I'm completely clueless regarding the latter. What I can say with almost absolute certainty is that things didn't get this way after Duquette and Buck came on board; it was evident long before that. While they aren't the ones who are probably responsible for things being the way they are, what's also true is that they haven't fixed it. What needs to be addressed is whether the problem originates with scouting or does it begin with development. Other than Arrieta, how many of these pitchers we've either traded or, such as was the case with Bridwell, essentially dumped, have really gone on to shine with their new clubs? Davies has double-digit wins for Milwaukee, but as his peripherals suggest, he's also been the beneficiary of some robust offensive support. Rick Porcello (some might remember he actually won the Cy Young last year) has almost identical numbers this year as Davies, but he's currently sporting a 4-13 record. The jury's still out on E-Rod, and while I don't wish Bridwell any bad luck, his current .289 BAA and 1.386 WHIP hints that he'll come back to earth somewhat in due time. What all of the above does result in, however, is a thin farm system and no cost-controlled starters. That's not exactly the best of both worlds.
  6. I wouldn't pay too much attention to what GMs say around the deadline. How many teams have said they were going to "play what we've got" and then went out and made blockbuster deals? If the Dodgers, Astros and whoever else are holding out in trade talks, then let it be known that you're willing to pull what you're selling off the market. I'm guessing--as someone else here pointed out--that the offers thus far for Britton haven't been up to expectations, which is understandable given his season thus far. He can't walk until after next year, so it would be better to keep him for now rather than give him away. That's not going to help, either.
  7. They're already said to be talking to Detroit about a Justin Verlander/Justin Wilson combination. Since Verlander is very expensive for the next several years, I'm guessing the big issue there will be salary relief. But it might address two of Houston's concerns, namely, their starters have had trouble pitching into the sixth inning, and their closer situation. They're also talking to the Athletics about Sonny Gray, who is cost-controlled for two more years and therefore will not come cheap. If they swing either of those deals, they might consider their shopping completed. Even coming off an injury, Britton is still better than Ken Giles, Houston's current closer, and Brach gives them another arm out of the bullpen should they have to try and shorten the game. Houston currently has six prospects ranked in Baseball America's Top 100. If they are willing to part with at least two, I'm listening if I'm the Orioles. Pretty simple.
  8. I think if Houston should come calling, they're going to want both Brach and Britton.
  9. Jayson Aquino Thursday night vs. Pawtucket: 6IP, 1ER, 4K, 1BB
  10. When did we suddenly acquire a pitching staff?
  11. The price of starting pitchers--particularly cost-controlled ones like Quintana or Sonny Gray--is exorbitant, so I guess the Yankees figured the next best thing would be to deepen the bullpen. The thing to wonder if whether or not the Yankees' starting rotation is strong enough to get to the bullpen, particularly now with the loss of Pineda.
  12. It's doubtful the Cubs are going to want to give him up.
  13. was reporting the Cubs as the favorite to get Britton (based on what, I don't know), but at this point, I'm not sure the Cubs have the prospects left to get Britton. They gave up their two best minor leaguers to get Jose Quintana, and a package of their remaining prospects isn't likely (at least I hope not) to cut it.
  14. Teams trade for top-shelf players every year without knowing whether or not they can re-sign them. Kansas City emptied its farm system in 2015 for both Johnny Cueto and Ben Zobrist, who figured to be, and were, two-month rentals. The Royals knew the risk, but they were trying to win right now, which they ultimately did. At the same time, Toronto gave up a package which included top prospect Daniel Norris to the Tigers for free-agent-to-be David Price. The Cubs gave up four players, including top-25 prospect Gleyber Torres, to the Yankees for Aroldis Chapman, who then re-signed with the Yankees over the winter. Without citing any actual statistics, I'd say the number of players acquired as rentals who ultimately re-up with that team is extremely low. The only one I can think of off-hand was Yoenis Cespedes, who signed with the Mets after being acquired by them from Detroit in a 2015 deadline deal. You don't need to find a big-market team to find a match in a trade. What's needed is a team which figures to have a chance to win and has the resources to acquire him. If Manny were traded before next season, the list of possible suitors increases dramatically because virtually any team, even a small-market club, would be able to take on a star player for one year at a below-market contract. The biggest difference between dealing in the offseason as opposed to the deadline is the urgency. Contenders tend to become a bit desperate as the deadline approaches, particularly if they see other teams around them making deals, and might be more inclined to overpay.
  15. If either you or I can come up with a viable solution, let's be sure to let the other one know so we can both go out and make a helluva lot of money as private pitching coaches. One theory I came across recently regarding McDowell is that he tends to work well with sinker/slider guys like he was, but not so well with guys who have different types of arsenals. I'd have to go back and look at his track record from his Atlanta days to see if there's anything to support this thesis, but at first glance, at least, it's an interesting take.