Saturday, September 5, 2009

A new off-season wish: A real closer

Don't get me wrong, I like J.P. Howell. I thought he made a great transition from starter to reliever. He also has the ability to use that nasty curve to make guys look bad. Unfortunately, it looks like his shelf life as a closer may have come to an end. 

For most of the night, it was a pitcher's duel between Justin Verlander and Jeff Niemann. Runs were at a premium all night and the game scooted right along. Then came the ninth. J.P. Howell put two guy on with walks before giving up an RBI single to Adam Everett. The Tigers tacked on two more insurance run, more than enough to keep the Rays from mounting a full come back.

The Rays bullpen has been questionable most of the year and it's a big reason they find their selves in the position their in.  Last year, they win that game. This year, they come up just short.  I think the Rays are in serious need of a bullpen overhaul in the off-season.  A solid closer would be a good start. I've got no problem keeping Dan Wheeler and J.P. Howell as set up men. Grant Balfour probably pitched over his head last year and what we're seeing this year is the true Balfour.  As for the other guys, they all can go as far as I'm concerned. The old, tired reliever act isn't working.


Bud Light said...

I can't remember a pitcher that almost falls down
after every pitch (thats why he throws pitches short in the dirt)...MAYBE someone..pitching coach or mgt could help him out with that????
Batters may have been confused a little first time thru league...but thats over...and their hitting him pretty easy now!

CocoFabulous said...

agreed...still love JP, wheeler gets another season. but quit bringing in the tired old relievers, they were let go for a reason.

Michael Weber said...

Here's one for you, Bud: Mitch Williams

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