Thursday, July 16, 2009

Vote For Pedro

The Philadelphia press reaction to the Phillies’ signing of Pedro Martinez has been muted. Not here at Frank Helps You Think It All Out- the vote here is a resounding “yes”.

Sam Donnellon argument is probably best summed up here:
"I want to get between the white lines and see what I can do," Martinez said at one point. "I might surprise you. I might not. But it's going to be really fun to go and find out."

No, it's not. It's going to be tedious, torturous and potentially distracting to a team that already has enough ifs and buts to fill a jelly-bean jar. Cole Hamels has a tired arm. Jamie Moyer is pitching as if he's 47.

All of that might be true- but it is not as if the departure of Pedro tomorrow solves any of those problems: the fifth spot would still be a stressful collection of “ifs and buts”, Hamels would still have a tired arm and Moyer would still be 47-ish.
Pedro is the exact opposite. He isn't adding to the problems, he is an attempt to solve one. For August, there will be ifs and buts who the fifth starter is. It’ll be Pedro- rather than some amalgamation of Bastardo, Park, Kendrick, Carpenter and all the other characters they’ve run out there. Even if Pedro pitches to a five-plus ERA, Philadelphia isn’t losing anything. That is what they get right now.

And there is upside with little risk, right? A Pedro story of a dozen successful starts, as opposed to three dozen, is a lot easier to believe. Back in the spring, he pitched well in the Baseball Classic: 2 games, 6 IP, 0 ER. Maybe he has got 75 innings at a 4.00 ERA still in there. Wouldn’t knock me over with a feather? And yes, I’m willing to pay a couple of million to find out. So as "Napolean Dynamite" taught us, I vote for Pedro.

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