Friday, May 10, 2013

Vogelsong is scaring people

Welp. Ryan Vogelsong still isn't right.

It was another one of those starts on Thursday against Atlanta. You know, the one where he seems kinda okay through a few innings and then Bochy leaves him in 3 hitters too long and by that time he's given up 5 or 6 runs, and then he gets chainsaw angry, but it's too late, and we can't come back that one night?

*Big inhale after run-on sentence*

Yeah, it was another one of those starts for Vogey, who is beginning to scare people.

Forget Cain scaring people, and Lincecum doesn't surprise anyone anymore with whatever he does that day. Vogey is a huge part of this rotation, and it's hard to say whether he'll be able to recover.

I don't know whether to blame this on arm fatigue, pitching too many innings in the World Baseball Classic instead of easing into Spring Training, or whether he's just 35 years old and is having trouble locating his pitches. What I know, is that he's floating meatballs up there, and the carnivores in the batter's box are having their way with him.

He's now given up 9 dingers, has the worst ERA of all starting pitchers, and Hank Schulman offered another ugly stat as well:

"For the season, opponents are hitting .500 against him without a single strikeout in the fifth. He has allowed 16 of his 36 runs in that inning."
Sometimes players just get off to slow starts, and it happens to the best of them sometimes. However, Vogey's troubles at the end of last season were forgotten after he managed to get himself together for a nearly perfect postseason. Sad to say, but it's been a downward trend.

We can discount this as a slow start, or we can say, "Hey, something's not right here."

Something is certainly not right, and if I were to guess, it would be some sort of arm trouble-- perhaps arm fatigue due to age and miles, or perhaps something more sinister and latent like an injury of some sort. But that's just speculation by an idiot blogger.

Vogey is the type of competitor that would rather die than admit that something is wrong, and we all know he'll fight to the end, like the dogged gladiator he is. His story of perseverance is part of the reason he's so endeared himself to the Giants faithful.

Don't look at this table if you don't want to puke/cry. (Click to enlarge)
But alas, we're in this to win games and win championships, and despite the fact Lincecum and Cain have been inconsistent thus far, Vogelsong remains the number one concern of the rotation. His 70 baserunners in 39.1 innings and only 1 quality start out of 7 outings stick out like two sore thumbs. It's also scary that opponents are hitting nearly .370 on balls hit in play.

That .370 number is so high, that it suggests some degree of bad luck at play, but when you actually watch the hits being allowed, most are no doubters. It's very disheartening.

Should he have a start skipped? Probably.

But if we know Bruce Bochy (and we do), he's going to give his veterans enough rope to hang themselves (Lincecum anyone?), with enough left over to take the remaining rope and wrap it around their entire bodies so they can keep warm.

We'll see how it all shakes out, but with few (if any) rotational options in Fresno or in the bullpen, Vogelsong will need to dig himself out of this hole as soon as possible and begin to locate his pitches. If he can't, more drastic moves may need to be taken, and none of us want it to come to that.

Get well soon, Vogelstrong.

1 comment:

  1. Yeah. Seems to be in a rough patch. I have to believe that the staff is working on the problems. Maybe it's more a lack of confidence.

    Todays game may help as Timmie went 7 strong with 2 hits. Maybe Vogie needs to be in the relief crew for a few weeks to work on things.