Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The 10-day vacation

I don't know if Scott Diamond is superstitious,
but the Twins seem to wear the "m" caps
when he starts.
Scott Diamond wasn't particularly sharp Monday -- he allowed five runs and nine hits in six innings, and, more to the point, didn't have the one-sided groundball-flyball ratio we're accustomed to seeing from him.

He won, but he's been better.

And that was to be expected. He hadn't pitched since July 5. The Twins used the four-day All-Star break to reshuffle the rotation and essentially skip a start for him, out of concern that the innings were adding up too rapidly.

I understand that; I don't think that pushing his innings from last year's 162 (majors and minors) to more than 200 this year is healthy. (He's pushing 120 now, with two and a half months to go.)

But there's also something to be said for keeping him in rhythm, and 10 days off is probably disruptive.

The Twins did something like this once before, in 2009 with Nick Blackburn. On July 10 that season, Blackburn beat the White Sox, raising his record to 8-4 with a 3.06 ERA. He didn't pitch again until July 20, when he gave up 13 hits and seven runs in five innings in a memorable loss.

It took a long time for him to get it back together that year, although he did finish the season with three quality starts. (Blackburn ended the season 11-11, 4.03, and led the league in hits allowed; he hasn't been nearly that good since.)  I hope it doesn't take that long for Diamond to snap back into his groove.

1 comment:

  1. Mr. Thoma was right again.

    "Royals designate LHP Jonathan Sanchez for assignment."

    I thought the Royals taking a chance on a big arm with command issues was a good gamble for what they needed; to get lucky and turn around a nice arm in KC and get Sanchez on track. Plus, they had Cain ready to take over for the departing Cabrera.

    Mr. Thoma I believe at the time of the trade did not see much promise in Sanchez turning his career arc around and wrote about it here IIRC.

    -1 for me.