January 24, 2009

If Someone's Going to Post a 5.54 ERA...

I'd rather it not be Tommy Glavine. Rocket Bill Ladson says that Glavine, a close friend of team President Stan "Nothing to See Here" Kasten, would consider joining the Nats if the Braves give him the boot. Your 2009 Washington Nationals, Plan B for 42 year old pitchers coming off of injuries. Color me less than thrilled.

Glavine managed just 13 starts and 63 IP for the Braves in 2008, logging a 5.54 ERA with a 1:1 K to BB ratio. Hardly impressive numbers, and no improvement at all over Nationals rookie righthander Collin Balester, who put up a 5.51 ERA in 80 innings. But the veteran lefty would reportedly be brought on board as much to mentor John Lannan and Scott Olsen as to provide innings at the back of the rotation. I'm sure Tom Glavine would be a great pitching coach, but that's no reason to give him a spot on the 25-man roster.

If the Nationals want to bring a pitcher like Jon Garland on board for 30 starts, 200 innings and a 4.50 ERA that might be money well spent. Ben Sheets too, would be a welcome addition, though possibly not worth the first pick in the second round of June's draft. But a Glavine, Randy Wolf or Josh Fogg would just be taking up space on a team like the 2009 Nationals.

Yes, you want depth behind a starting rotation of Olsen, Lannan, Daniel Cabrera , Balester and Jordan Zimmermann. But that's exactly what guys like Shawn Hill, Gustavo Chacin, Jorge Sosa, Josh Towers, Tyler Clippard, Garrett Mock and Shairon Martis are. Depth. Rehabing vets, promising youngsters, all providing more flexibility than a 30 or 40-something starter on a guaranteed major league contract. So sign Garland or Sheets, by all means. But if not, there's nothing else out there on the market that can't be replicated from within the system.

Fortunately, the same is not true of hitters. So SIGN DUNN already!

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