Once again, the Twins’ starting pitching has failed and another shuffle is about to occur.
Francisco Liriano’s work in the bullpen, while less than stellar, was good enough that he is back in the rotation beginning Wednesday. It appears to be not so much that he has earned the spot than the poor performance of the other options. Anthony Swarzak pitched miserably yesterday relegating himself back to the bullpen to make room for Liriano.
The more I think about the move, the more I believe it is really the only option left for the Twins when it comes to this enigmatic pitcher. He has great stuff, as everyone says, but he is maddeningly inconsistent. For some time now I’ve been of the opinion that he will not be with the Twins next year and it is only a matter of time before he is gone this year. Unfortunately to be worth anything in a trade, he will have to pitch better and it will need to be as a starter. Thus his promising career is hanging in the balance.
Carl Pavano again failed to get out of the fifth inning today even after delaying this start by two extra days, and that signals that something is wrong. Has he hit the wall and his career is over? Is he just still slow at developing the his normal velocity in the early season? The signs have been there over the past two years, and now I think he is not going to regain any significant velocity. He does not have good enough stuff to pitch consistently anymore, so I look for the Twins to put him on the DL and hope for a rehab that builds back some strength. Like Liriano, if he does not improve, he will be worthless as trade material and may face the same fate as Jason Marquis, being designated for assignment or released.
I’m guessing the Brian Duensing is going to get another chance to make it in the rotation replacing Pavano. That will mean calling up one of the relievers who has done well in Rochester. If I am right, it probably will be announced tomorrow and then I’ll review who I think the options are for call up and who I think should be the one.