Thursday, August 4, 2011

No Respect

It’s just my worthless opinion, but getting to watch the pitching machine known as Justin Verlander every five days has spoiled quite a few Tiger fans out there.

Let me explain…

In 2009 and 2010, we saw the following men make 135 starts at the back of our rotation. With the exception of a few games here and there, they did not do a very good job. Try not to wince when you read this list of pitchers and the amount of starts they made for Detroit.

Armando Galarraga: 49
Jeremy Bonderman: 30
Dontrelle Willis: 15
Jarrod Washburn: 8
Nate Robertson: 6
Luke French: 5
Eddie Bonine: 5
Andy Oliver: 5
Zach Miner: 5
Alfredo Figaro: 4
Brad Thomas: 2
Phil Coke: 1

That’s heartbreaking, isn’t it? I mean, other than Armando’s imperfect game, that’s a lot of suck right there. You would think that a fanbase that has suffered from such crappy #4 and #5 starters the past couple years might be ecstatic to get a guy that was serviceable at the back of the rotation.

Now go back to the beginning of April of 2011. That’s only four months ago…even my alcohol-ravaged brain can remember back that far. What if I told you we would get a guy to back up Verlander, Scherzer, and Porcello that would make 22 straight starts without missing a turn in the rotation.

And in those 22 starts…

-He would go at least 5 innings pitched 19 times.
-He would go at least 6 innings 15 times.
-He would allow 4 earned runs or less 17 times.
-He would allow ZERO earned runs 3 times.
-He would walk 3 or less batters 19 times.
-As a bonus, this man would only be costing us $3 million in payroll.

I don’t know about you, but I would be thrilled to hear this. After all of the Quad-A guys we’ve had to sit through, I’d be one happy camper.

And you know what? We do have that guy.
His name is Brad Penny. And all everyone does is shit on him. No respect.

Today he faced on of the best offenses in Major League Baseball, the Texas Rangers. He went 6.2 innings and allowed 4 earned runs. That's not great, but it's not horrible. If it were Nate, Bondo, or Dontrelle out there, that game might be still going on at 9:37pm, as I write this. Since the end of the game, though, I’ve been reading several comments on Twitter and on Tiger sites saying how awful he is and even a couple saying he should be DFA’d.

What the fuck, people? What do you want from the guy?

They can’t all be Verlander, kids. Look at that list of #4’s and #5’s we’ve been subjected to one more time.

And give Brad Penny a well-deserved tip of the cap instead of these middle fingers he doesn’t deserve.


Jeff said...

I agree.  He pitches too slow.  I hate to watch him.  He doesn't strike out enough guys.  He seems to have an attitude problem.
And he is a decent fifth starter for a high scoring team.

verlander said...

He hasn't been terrible for a fifth starter, imo.

Russell White said...

You forgot his most important stat of all.  Nailed Alyssa Milano, Eliza Dushku and Karina Smirnoff. He's a pro.

Jay Hathaway said...

I'm for him.  He seems like the kind of asshole who brags about how much beer he can drink or fried chicken he can eat, but there are certainly worse varieties of assholes out there.  And yes, he has been a sufficient 5th man, for sure.  He does really slow things down, though.  I wouldn't be surprised to see him break out a magazine and leaf through it between pitches.

JacksTigers said...

Those numbers aren't terrible for a number 5 guy, but he hasn't been pitching in the number 5 spot. He's been in the number 2 slot up until the All-Star break. If I had a dollar every time Rod Allen said that Penny's happy to pitch after Verlander (number 1) because he has a fresh bullpen, I'd be a very rich man. My point being, he pitched the second game of the year and he pitched after Verlander. Not after Porcello.

Michael Wilson said...

You realize that the order they actually pitch in has no relevance in if they are in the number 2, 3, 3, or 5 slot, right?  It is strictly a numbering system for their talent level... (or at least supposed to be).

You know, the best pitcher is your number 1 pitcher, the worst pitcher is your number 5 pitcher.  The numbering system doesn't really come into effect too much until the play offs, and even then it may be jumbled around based on who pitches better home and away.  The start of the year it is all messed up because they want to have certain pitchers start the home opener (like this year) and they may not want a pitchers first start on the road (like Porcello last year I think...).  Penny is our number 5 pitcher.

Michael Wilson said...

Very disappointed.

Well thought out informative article with only one fuck in the whole thing?  If I wanted accurate reporting I would go to BYB!!!

Just kidding man nice article.

anon said...

Phil Coke only had 1 start? am i missing something here?

SRogo said...

Yes. I listed games started in 2009 and 2010. Coke started only one game at the end of last year. 

Raburn's 2nd Base Coach said...

The reason he pitches in between Scherzer and Verlander is because they throw hard and he throws really soft, it keeps hitters off balance and set them up to face a fast guy the next day. It's likely Fister will probably pitch in that spot.

Give Em' the Heater, Ricky said...

Penny throws in the mid 90's.  He is very similar, if not a HARDER thrower, than Scherzer.  His fastball just doesn't have the same movement as Max's, nor does he pitch inside with any consistency, with both contribute to illusions of velocity.  As a matter of fact, a stat at BYB yesterday showed Penny's average velocity of yesterdays start at 94.8mph.  That's mid 90's.  It's just more of a "dead" 95mph, rather than a "live" 95mph, like Verlanders/Scherzers/Albuquerques/Valverdes