I usually don't write things like this. Clearly, the frustration and craptastic fiasco that has been the 2011 season is getting to me, and chances are tomorrow morning I won't feel quite the same way about this whole thing as I do right now. So, there. There's my caveat.
For those who don't know or didn't watch the game, Kevin Slowey was unavailable again today due to a muscle tear near his stomach. That's today, May 22nd, that he was unavilable and May 21st. He pitched two thirds of an inning off eleven pitches on the 20th. It was the first time he'd pitched since his, admittedly, very positive six-inning outing on the 15th.
Now, I don't mean to put the complete onus of all my frustration on Slowey, but what the hell is going on? He's on the disabled list, comes back to the club and can't warm up without getting sore, feels like he can't warm up for a relief appearance but could magically warm up for a 100-pitch appearance, and now this? I'm not saying we hold it against him if he's hurt, again, but if he's hurt can we please just send him back to the disabled list and get an arm that can at least be used? I recognize that there aren't a great deal of good options in Rochester this year (thanks again, front office), but a warm body is better than no body.
I'm a Slowey fan. I like him as a player, and I think he can be a very useful member of this team whether that's out of the rotation or out of the bullpen. But for the love of all that is good and holy, if he can't pitch or if he's not willing to pitch in the role that his team requires of him, then let's do something about it.
When he's able and ready to help this team, fantastic. And yes, that should be from the bullpen until he proves he can handle a larger role by pitching effectively and repeatedly as a reliever. If he's not effective in that role, or if he can't do it more than once a week, then he's certainly not going to be of any help to the rotation either.
Whatever is happening with Slowey this year, let's just figure it out. I don't care if he needs the season off to let his muscles heal and to take a little stress off his elbow or wrist for a while, then just do it. I know, I know, I know this is a completely subjective statement but it certainly seems like the MO of this front office going back to last winter has been wait-and-see. In fact, you could probably go back further than that. But at some point you need to be proactive in something. They were proactive in the Hardy trade, and in the Capps and Fuentes trades, but those situations seem to be ever more outnumbered by situations where stay-the-course is the preferred option.
Right now, the course of this season is royally screwed. Let's stop babying players who can't play and just take them out and let them get healthy, let's stop calling up proven can't-perform players like Dusty Hughes just because they're on the 40-man roster, and for the future of this team and this organization let's not be afraid to make a few difficult decisions.
Unless they're already making the difficult decisions, which is why I don't like them? Nah. That couldn't be it.