Tryin’ To Be Upbeat About the Suppan Signing

Well, if you’ve been reading out site, you’ll recall that both Robert and I have our doubts about Jeff Suppan’s effectiveness and/or consistency…but with a 4-year deal signed, sealed, and delivered, some of the positives to come out of the signing include: 1. Chris Capuano could be alot more successful…especially if he’s bumped down to the #3 slot. Cappy seemed to be a bit outmatched versus other #2 pitchers (say Mark Mulder, Andy Pettite/Roy Oswalt, and Mike Maddux)…as a #3 pitcher, he’ll be up against less formidable competition (especially since Pettite and Maddux are both out of the division now)…as well as having less pressure to put upon himself. 2. Addition by subtraction…the Cards are scrambling for starters now…while Carpenter is in the fold, Suppan is a known gone, and, it appears, that both Mulder and Weaver won’t be back…and even Jason Marquis has bolted. Plus the Brewers won’t have to worry about facing Suppan anymore. 3. Bush and Vargas should benefit, too…like Capuano, Bush moving back to #4 instead of #3, and Vargas moving back to #5 should greatly benefit…more competitive matchups mean that each can allow 3-4 runs and still be in contests (provided the Brewers’ offense can get run off opposing starters)…which means… 4. The bullpen should benefit…if Bush and Vargas can go 6 or 7 innings deep into games, the bullpen will be called up less than if Villanueva was the #5 starter, and Vargas were pitching in the 4 slot. 5. Lastly, and probably most importantly, this is a signal that Brewers’ owner Mark Attanasio wants to win NOW…no more waiting for prospects to develop…we can debate all day as to whether the money could have been better spent elsewhere but, hey, it’s not our money…and, spending the money improving our chances to win is certainly better than just sitting on it. So, let’s just give this Christmas present the benefit of the doubt…maybe it will look good on us in Milwaukee come April. David Hannes Copyright 2006

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