Brad Lidge, a nice guy (so I read), a team guy (so I read) had, um, let’s say, a bad playoff series last year.
The infamous hanging slider to Uncle Albert in Game 5 NLCS – which, in truth, really lost us the WS.
- Now, as best I understand it from the sportswriter guys who all have extensive training in psychology, this home run completely destroyed Brad Lidge’s ability to pitch – he lost his mojo (or something…)
- Want proof?
The homer to Geoff freaking Blum…
The homer to Scott effing Podsednik…
The bleeder up the middle to Jermaine MVP Dye…
The 5. something ERA this year, the TWO grannies, the 5 BS, etc.
This complete destruction (ahem) of a pitcher courtesy of one Albert Pujols has caused TONS of complaints from “loyal” Stros fans wanting to see Brad traded for either an aging hellaciously expensive slugger, a reliever who never fails or a bag of used chewing gum.
And now, maybe some of the Astros fans who want everyone but Lance, Roy, Wheeler and Luke Scott off the team (and want us to pay 15 mill a year for stiff legged .810 career OPS Carlos Lee and GAWD knows how many mill a year for GAWD knows how many years for Soriano – like he’d ever come here in the first place and think that for some reason Barry Zito would WANT to leave the bright lights of the coast for obscurity at ANY price) might could want to look at the newest post season closer goats:
Huston Street, native Texan, Oakland A’s closer, who gave up the series clinching 3 run homer with 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th. Mr. Street, I must remind yall, blew ELEVEN saves during the regular season, and lost 2 more games, but has escaped the same sort of criticism from the fans that Brad Lidge has received because his ERA this year was 3 runs lower…
Billy Wagner, ex-Astro, the guy who firmly believes that the reason God gave him a mouth is to talk, and he can so he does, well, he went all Brad in Game 2 and coughed up 3 runs, including a home run to So Taguchi, slugger extraordinaire. The understanding NY media screamed “Billy-Goat!!!” in the headlines.
But somehow, no writer suggested that either closer had had his mojo destroyed by either homer. hmmmmmmm….
So I would guess that mojo or no mojo, at LEAST 20 ML teams would line up to get Brad Lidge in a trade. At LEAST 20 ML pitching coaches would boast they could straighten him right out.
Fact is that NO closer is infallible, not even The Mariano. Fact is that the Astros do not have any ML ready lights out closer waiting to take over. But actually, I don’t see what is wrong with rotating bullpen guys to close. If Wheeler is rested, threw 7 pitches for a 1,2,3 8th inning and the bottom of the lineup is coming up, why not send him back out? The sticking points seem to be
1 – guys egos
2 – dinero.
IF from the very beginning you tell Qualls, Wheeler, Lidge and maybe even Nieve that ALL of them are gonna close sometimes, and you are gonna go based on how rested or tired some guys are or ANY reason. Yeah, I guess this IS the closer by committee idea that the Boston guys tried to try out a few years back, But the problem was supposed to be that all the relievers were all indignant because they insisted on a set “role” – like only the 7th, or only leftys. Or only with less than 2 on 2 out. Whatever. It seemed to work at the end of the season, it might could work all year…
No Astros news, really. Roy uses his new bulldozer. Lidge, Wheeler and Qualls go hunting. Luke Scott and Taveras go fishing. Brad Ausmus, Mo Ensberg and Jason Lane go surfing. Or swimming. Adam Everett sez – I’m teaching my daughter to pitch.
Biggio is close to signing a contract. Duh. He’s not taking a pay cut. Duh. He expects to play. More Duh. Burke will go wherever he can play. Duh.
No news on the new pitching coach yet.
Very bad news – looks like the team is going to keep the lousy radio announcers. What a shame.
I read on cbssportsline that Scott Miller thinks that Albert Pujols is always a moody jerk. OK. Now that Barry Lamar Himself has turned into a nice guy and team player I guess SOMEone gotta inherit the moody jerk title… Not that Uncle has exactly shone in the playoffs so far – just like Himself before 02. And how strange it is to find myself rooting FOR that dratted Pest…
Of course the Tigers made it a very boring sweep of the A’s and now the experts are saying they should sweep the NL team, too. Which of course makes me root even harder for that Pest to won WS MVP. Either him or Speizio, who I thought should really have won it in 02.
Cards are now up 3-2. The experts are now sure that the Mets will take the last 2 back at Shea. Because they can’t ALWAYS be RONGGGG now, can they???