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Elation tonight but previous disappointments loom

So, how about that Jonny Gomes? Isn't it just so great that he doesn't play every day and when he does play isn't farther up in the lineup? I know he had a brief slump recently but if he gets going again he really should be hitting third. Huff isn't getting it done and Gomes is the only other player on the team that's both an on-base and power threat.

In other good news, Harper pitched well tonight, including two strikeouts which were very good to see from him.

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On to the bad stuff, it was a disappointing week for the starting pitching, non-Hendrickson and Nomo division (since those two are always suspect).

While Fossum's last two starts had been poor overall in the result in both of them it was due to bad first innings which he recovered from to pitch well for the rest of the game. On Wednesday against Chicago though he was fine in the first inning but tanked the other five, throwing 125 pitches in the process. This start (and to a lesser extent the previous two) were prime examples of the limitations of Fossum as a starter. He is generally good and can dominate but he has real problems with consistency, sometimes losing his control and other times having stretches where he just isn't fooling the hitters and gets hit around. I'm no pitching guru so I could very well be full of crap but I think he throws too much breaking stuff. He has a good moving fastball that he doesn't use enough, not only can breaking pitches sometimes hang badly and get crushed but throwing so many reduces the effectiveness some. That's nullified some by the wide variety he has but I'd like to see more fastballs.

McClung was next up and didn't get it done either. His trouble was the first inning but the rest of the game didn't go all that well either, though he only gave up one more run. He did strike out six but five walks and two home runs just isn't going to get it done. I can't understand the belief that him starting instead of relieving is going to cause some major improvement in his pitching. Why would it? Ok, so he's more comfortable pitching every fifth day instead of coming in at random times, that could help a bit. That doesn't change the fact though that in the minors his control wasn't that good and he didn't strike out enough hitters to make up for it. He still has developing to do before we can hope for him to be a good major league pitcher, just going back to starting isn't going to change that.

Kazmir looked a lot like.....well, a 21 year old pitcher with still problematic control. Not much you can do about that, it's to be expected from him, particularly with the way he was rushed to the majors. He's leading the league and walks but pitching reasonably well overall in spite of that. Fossum and him are, in spite of struggles sometimes, legitimate major league pitchers that could make it onto most, if not all of the, staffs in the majors.