Games » Detroit TigersApr13
Don’t blame Trey for this one
Bannister starts and shows what throwing strikes … with movement … but still strikes, can do. After 6 innings he’s given up no runs, 1 walk and 3 hits. He’s only struck out three which means he’s gotten (let’s see, 6 x 3, minus 3, divided by the current interest rate, carry the two) 15 outs in six innings by letting them hit the ball!
He grips it a little goofy, throws it in the zone and lets the movement prevent them from squaring it up. They can hit it, but not the way they want to. Unless they’re Nolan Ryan (and I haven’t seen him in a Royals uniform this season) all Kansas City pitchers need to learn this trick.
Dan Quisenberry said he became a good pitcher once he decided to let the other 8 guys play. Danny Jackson told me he didn’t care how he got hitters out, he just wanted them out as quickly as possible. Orel Hershiser says the pitches out of the zone that hitters chased in college, major leaguers spit on (baseball translation: they don’t swing) and pitchers have to learn how to get people out with pitches that are in the zone.
But, hey, what the hell do those guys know about pitching?
OK, so Bannister comes out for the 7th, takes 7 pitches to strike out Guillen, walks Inge and falls behind Laird before giving up a double. He’s clearly not pitching like he did in the first 6 innings. He’s used 93 pitches to get 19 outs and he’s still 5 outs away from handing the ball to Soria.
Looks like Bannister’s gassed. Trey has no choice but to go the bullpen. Bannister has done his job and now it was time for someone else to do theirs.
But they don’t.
Collectively, the bullpen gives up 3 doubles, 2 singles and 4 walks in an inning and 2/3rds. (Damn, that’s not easy to do, even if you’re playing slow-pitch softball.) When they’re not walking people, they’re falling behind.
Ordonez stepped to the plate representing the winning run and Hughes walked him. Then Cruz came in and gave up another free pass to put him in scoring position. A double later: ball game over, drive home safely, folks.
Clint Hurdle once said of a pitcher who was walking people, “Either he can’t or won’t throw strikes and neither one’s acceptable.”
The Royals system has to have some relievers that aren’t afraid to throw strikes…and not just throw strikes, but throw them early in the count before the hitter knows what’s coming. Find those guys and get them up here.
Like I said, don’t blame Trey … but you can take a long look at Dayton.
Sorry, I lost it there for a minute
But, geez, (that’s not really a word I use) I’m watching a perfectly good ball game and, once again, the bullpen ‘shits the bed’. As I’ve explained earlier, that’s a phrase used in dugouts across America and, because they start laughing every time they hear it, my editors say I can use it as long as it does not appear too early in my notes (where it can be seen on the home page).
I will endeavor to make STBs a legitimate, Bill James-type stat, though. Mark my profane words.
Billy, Billy, Billy…
I couldn’t see what he did on TV, but I was surprised Butler didn’t score on Guillen’s double. The phrase “going halfway on a fly ball” is misleading. It’s actually going as far as you can and that can be more or less than halfway.
On a double hit into the left center gap, with Damon racing straight across, Billy probably should’ve been around second. Damon’s got a weak arm and he was moving at full speed pretty much away from the infield. If he made the catch there wasn’t going to be much of a throw. Once he left his feet, hardly any danger at all.
Damon missed and the ball went to the fence. When the camera showed Butler again, he was just pulling into third. If he’s around second, sees the ball get by, how does he not score?
Which brings up a salient (bet you didn’t know I knew words like that, did you?…granted, I’m not sure what it means or if I spelled it right) point: I can’t score what I can’t see and there are limitations to TV and live games.
I’ll just keep doing my best … which, so far, has been a big disappointment to everyone I know.