Well, we got our hopes up for nothing. Ken Macha announced this morning that Jeff Suppan will be joining the team as the fifth starter when he returns from the disabled list, and is expected to start next week against the Cubs. Just a few quick thoughts on this:
- Aside from the salary, does Jeff Suppan have dirty photos of Ken Macha somewhere?
- Who does Chris Narveson have to kill to be considered for a rotation spot?
- Macha is aware that the Cubs are probably the worst team for Suppan to come back against, right? The last time I checked, Derrek Lee’s OPS against Suppan was Pujols-esque.
The only possible way this makes sense is if the Brewers are setting Suppan up to fail, so he can pitch his way out of the rotation. If that was the case, you could argue he’s been pitching his way out of the rotation since the beginning of spring training.
This was the worst case scenario from the start, and it’s pretty clear now that there never was any real competition for the last spot in the rotation. If there was a competition, Suppan would’ve finished dead last in the three-way race. For once, I find myself agreeing with a lot of the comments in the JSOnline blog post, and to me, that’s the scariest thing of all about this.
I’m not one to log on to throw up a vent post — especially this early in the season — but this is just ridiculous.
Edit: Updated with Macha’s comments:
“I don’t think if he was in the bullpen, (the salary) would matter,” said Macha. “He’s going to be one of the 12 pitchers.”
Except he did nothing to earn being one of the 12 pitchers, let alone top 12 starters in the organization.
“We could have a number of No. 5 starters over the course of the year,” said Macha. “Right now, we’re going in this direction. Production will be a big part of it.”
If production will be a big part of deciding whether Suppan stays in the rotation or not, why wouldn’t production be a big part of deciding to give him the rotation spot in the first place? His production — or lack thereof — in the spring didn’t warrant him getting the job.
“There are a couple of things you can look at,” said Macha. “Suppan was our lead guy out last year. Now, he’s not in a situation where he’s No. 1 against the other team’s No. 1.”
Yeah, because that was his problem last year, being matched up with another team’s ace. That’s why he walked more batters in 2009 than he had since 2000, posted a WHIP of 1.695, and coughed up 25 homers. That’s why his ERA+ was a horrific 76. I’m sure it was just the fact that he was going up against another team’s ace, and not the fact that he was one of the worst starters in baseball last year.
“You could make a case for all three guys.”
No. No, you really couldn’t. It should have come down to Parra and Narveson, but it’s pretty clear now that Macha never really considered anyone but Suppan.