...weird. I had thought that Shawn Camp came into camp and looked like...Shawn Camp. He got Dr. D's rubber stamp of reliability just the other day, and I think if anybody was asked about the weakness of this team, it would be the bullpen's likely inconsistency. Delabar hasn't been able to nail it down, Kuo is gone now, most of the non-roster non-invitees have been moved over to minor league camp. I think this means that Ramirez, Iwakuma, Milwood, Furbush, and Noesi have all made the team, and of course, not all of them can start, so they're pushing into the bullpen pretty hard now.
Q. One walk and 9 strikeouts! That makes him a saber sweetie!
A. Haven't seen him pitch. Everybody says he's 86-88 mph with the fastball, but does have a Luke French curve ball. And that he has Luke French's assortment of changes, sliders, and scuffballs. Everybody says he has Luke French's pitchability. I'll guarantee you that he has Luke French's first name. We spend money on research around here.
L. Ron Hubbard invented Dianetics on a bet, *in my opinion* you CIA-spook wannabes googling this, and his "religion" was based on the sales shtick that when you are unconscious, spoken words plant "engrams" on your subconscious. I got audited downtown, because as you may have heard, I'm a comparative religion kinda guy. The Dianetics auditor thought I was far too open-minded and told me that my main problem was that I had the engram "Listen!" on the broken record of my subconscious. My stepdad probably yelled that at my mom while I was asleep in my crib. True story.
Back on point: Considering Jarrod Washburn for Luke French, considering his scouting director for Josh Leuke, and considering an 87-mph lefty reliever this year, can there be any doubt about Jay-Z's engram? You got it. "He's a LuLu!"
::Pauses, acknowledges general applause::
Q. C'mon. Luetge's pitching great. I used to think you were a moron; now you've opened your mouth and removed all doubt.
A. He's got six innings worth of good results, against late-game ST batters, yeah. The question is context.
There is a reason that relief pitchers throw 93, rather than 87. You bring in Charlie Furbush with two on and one out, and he throws 93, and misses his spot, and the batter might very well pop it up. It takes both the reliever, and the hitter, a few pitches to find the range. At 93 you get away with a lot of mistakes over the plate.
But you come in, men on base, in the late innings, and you miss with 87 mph out-and-over? Guess what happens? You got it.
And Eric Wedge doesn't enjoy making a pitching change, only to see the very next pitch (read that phrase again) lose him a ballgame on a 3-run shot into the upper deck. Wedge looks like a complete idiot. Wedge does not favor catastrophe outcomes on the first pitch of bullpen changes. Ball one, that's one thing. 440 feet into the gloaming, while you're on the second step down into the dugout, that's another thing.
There is a blinkin' good reason that there are no 4-pitch, 87-mph lefthanders setting up.
Q. GS-24 throws only 87 mph, too, though.
A. Very good, except GS-24 has been there before. He's got the hang of it. Avoiding 425 on the first pitch, as in.
Both Charlie Furbush and George Sherrill are exponentially more trustworthy than a rule 5 kid who picks fights with marshmallows at 20 yards.
Now, if every report on the internet is wrong, and Luetge throws 90+, that's a different conversation. STILL he would have a starting pitcher's game, but.
Q. So how about the rotation?
A. You bet. Right after Taijuan Walker gets blasted and sent back down to class-A. Let's get Luetge right into the 5-man rotation, just as soon as our Mariners A and Mariners B rotations fail their 720 skateboard tricks and all wipe out together.
Q. There was some reason that Jay-Z took him rule 5.
Am sure that Luetge was a great rule 5 pick. For somebody who can use him. Maybe his original team? What are they offering?
No offense, man. But if Lucas Luetge has an instrument on this stage, you'll have to point it out to me.
3 games worth.
3/3 v. Oak -- he was throwing 90+, but was wild
3/6 v. Reds -- down to 89ish, but less wild
3/9 v. Dbacks -- again 89ish but all the fastballs were strikes (only threw 8 pitches)
I have nothing against Luetge, but I don't see the need for him in light of Furbush, Robles, Butler and Moran, all of whom are headed toward LH bullpen roles.
They're not in a position to unceremoniously dump Iwakuma, though they can put him in the pen for awhile (apparently).
Obviously they love Erasmo and Noesi coming in with 93+ ammo.
They love Capt. Millwood as "veteran presence."
Beavan has done too well to have disqualified himself.
So that's 5 guys for 3 spots. Two of them go to the pen.
If you want Furbush as a second lefty, and Ramirez and Iwakuma make the team as relievers, then no room for Camp.
Seems like essentially he lost out to Erasmo.
Beavan might re-located his 95 mph stuff in the pen.
Erasmo is giving you too much to send him down, same with Noesi, and Iwakuma is doing what you asked him to do.
On most teams the best pitchers are the starters. If you have Felix, you don't make him a closer you make him a Cy Young winning starter.
I'm starting to wonder if the Ms are planning on making Future Felix a closer, though. I mean, if you wanted a bullpen full of killers, you'd take some of your excess starters and move them over, right? I mean, if they had good stuff.
Noesi and Erasmo are both throwing 94 as starters. What can they do in the pen?
As this HBT article discusses, one of the best bullpens ever - if not THE best - is the 2003 Dodgers.
Gagne was a converted starter, Quantrill was a former swingman-starter who was deadly in the pen until he was overused, Shuey was a #2 pick OVERALL and minor league starter who was moved to the pen almost immediately a la Papelbon, Martin was a starter-made-closer, and Mota started for a year before HE was made a closer.
Talk about an All-Star, all-money bullpen.
We're currently aiming Robles (former starter), Snow (swingman), potentially Beavan, Noesi and Erasmo at the pen, all starters. Could Paxton wind up as a closer instead of a 200 inning starter? I would think (and hope) not, but if Hultzen and Walker both pass him up for starter slots and we have the need, we might make the same decision that the Red Sox did with Papelbon.
I've been thinking the Mariners are gonna have to find some way to deal with all this depth, pitching and hitting wise.
What if their answer is to put a whole armada of bat-first players on the field and supplement their lack of gloves with a fist-full of Ks and utter lack of hits because they're putting 10 or 15 million dollar (WAR) starters in the pen as swing and set-up men once they've stuffed the rotation?
It's an interesting idea. Get a couple of key gloves and let the rest of the bats do the talking around the absolute silence of pitchers playing catch with their battery mates.
Isn't that the Yankees, Bo Sox and Phillies plan when they can manage it?
This is very good news. I liked Camp...and he'll do fine elsewhere I'm sure...but I was actually rooting pertty hard to use the bullpen as a soft-landing-locale for prospects. Think about this:
Rightn now we have Hernandez/Vargas/?/?/? with five guys fighting for those three ?. All five look OK to good and solid. We don't know which ones will be the best long term in and what roles. Maybe the Ewok is better in the pen where he can throw harder? Maybe Beavan humps it up to 96 when he's in the pen? We just don't know...and ST is too short this year.
Which means...the only logical course of action is to simply carry 8 starters and hope some of them do well in the pen in the short term...use a rotation that varies as much as is necessary...and trade the ones we don't need when the real bullpen arms arrive.
My opening rotation would be Hernandez/Vargas/Millwood/Ramirez/Iwakuma or Noesi...and my opening bullpen would be League/Wilhelmson/Sherrill/Kelley/Furbush/Beavan/Noesi or Iwakuma. That scares me a lot less (in terms of volatility) than soe of the pre-season bullpen projections.
Baker has confirmed: Noesi, Beavan and Milwood round out the rotation, with Iwakuma and Ramirez in the bullpen.
But it's Iwakuma. So does that make him this year's Shiggy Hasegawa? Because I would think if Beavan struggles that Ramirez is the first guy outta the pen.
Maybe we're just making it really easy to bring up the kids in a couple of months. We'll see how the offense does supporting these 5 in the meantime.
Or at least no safety net. Good to see that JZ thinks we have outgrown camp. He came in and just threw the stuffing out of the ball, but no dice.
Onward and upward ...
But would still like to know how he fits in. Like bat571 said maybe we can throw them a Jabari blash or ?
Kid obviously has very fine nerves to go along with the hook ...