My take on the race for the #5 spot in the Phillies rotation.
Well what can you say about this guy? He tries? He wants to do good? All I can say about him is I’d rather not give him another shot in the rotation. A lot of people are saying that he can’t do any worse than he did last year. Wanna bet? I read an article earlier in the off-season saying how Eaton’s fastball breaks more than his curveball and slider. That is pretty horrific. So far his ERA this spring is a whopping 15.75 and he hasn’t shown ANY signs of improvement. Now recently he has missed a start and thrown some bullpen sessions because of some back pain. Ultimately it turned out not to be a big deal and most likely he just wants to point blame at anything but his lack of talent. All this into account i give him a 75% chance that he makes the rotation based on salary alone. *sigh*
J.D. “THE REAL DEAL” DURBIN
Well so far “The Real Deal” (I definitely can’t say that with a straight face) hasn’t exactly impressed either. He has pitched 9.1 innings and has given up 10 ER so that’s a 9.64 ERA ladies and gentlemen. He says he feels fine so there’s no crying about his back or pointing blame here, he just knows he sucks. The shut out in LA was 100% a fluke and now he is lucky if he can get a shut out inning. I give him a 15% chance of making the rotation.
He started out very strong with 6 scoreless innings but since then he has been steadily and rapidly declining. His ERA is now 8.22 and he has been struggling with his command a bit walking 6 batters in 6.2 IP. I do believe though he can turn it around and maybe end camp with an ERA in the high 4’s. I’ll give him a 35% chance to make the rotation.
I think Chad has the best chance to make the rotation next to Eaton. Of course, like every other Phillies pitcher, he is also struggling this spring. Right now his ERA is 7.20 after giving up 2 ER in a minor league game on wednesday. On the up side in 5 IP he has yet to walk a batter, showing excellent control, and has struck out 5. If he doesn’t end up as the 5th starter I think he will end up in the pen as a long reliever. With all that into account I give him a 60% chance of making the rotation.
Rosario has actually surprised everyone this spring. Last year out of the pen it seemed he gave up at least one run every inning he pitched up until he landed on the 60-day DL. But right now it’s a different story. So far his spring stats are:
8.2 IP 5 H 1 ER 1.04 ERA 3 BB 8 SO
That looks pretty good to me. Walking a lot of batters in the past was always a problem for him but it seems he has worked on his control considerably. I just don’t think the Phillies are seriously considering him as an option to start in the rotation. But that could change because i have heard he is starting the spring training game against the Braves friday. Now this could be for 1 of 2 reasons: 1. They want to see how he does starting a game because they ARE considering him for the rotation. or 2. They just want to see how he does against starters, exactly what they did with Madson against the Reds yesterday. If he keeps this up until the end of spring then I at least want him to be a seat warmer for, my favorite option for 5th starter,Kris Benson until he is healthy. I give him a 25% chance of making the rotation.
I personally want Ann..I mean Kris Benson as the 5th starter. Now I know he won’t be ready by the time the season starts and won’t return till late april or early may. But he feels like the best option so far. So far he has a couple bullpen sessions and a minor league game under his belt, with another minor league start taking place today but the results are yet to be released. From all reports he is looking good and his fastball is topping out at 88-89 mph, just a hair shy of his normal low 90’s fastball. Also he apparently has dusted off his curveball and it is looking good after some mechanical tweaking by Rich Dubee. Hopefully the Phils can find a viable option to start at #5 until he is ready. I’ll give him an 80% chance to make the rotation once he’s ready to go.
Whoever ends up being the 5th starter all I ask is that their ERA is under 6. is that so much to ask?! PLEASE?!?!?!
UPDATE: Kris Benson’s minor league game stats against the Blue Jays A Team were:
57 Pitches 2 ER 5 H 4 SO 1 BB
He was sure to mention his surgically repaired right arm “feels fine”
Also Helms is 2 for 3 with a double and a triple in tonight’s game so far! Any takers?!?!