Prerequisite: Watch the first 2:30 of this clip...
I share the wisdom of George Knox (Danny Glover) when it comes to our starting pitching staff: "Wee Gotta Starting Trading 'Em...All of 'Em!".
Even thought the Twins have won two games in a row (break out the party hats!) and as such I should be brimming with hope, I am so sick of both Nick Blackburn & Francisco Liriano in the starting rotation. The struggles with Liriano are well-known and well-documented. It is Blackie that really gets me steamed.
In all honesty, can any of you out there honestly say that Blackburn has significantly helped the club in a major way since this fateful night in 2008...
Heck, we even lost that game, but no one can argue that Blackburn didn't leave everything he had on the mound that night.
Other than that, though, Blackie has spent as much time in the minors or injured as pitching at a quality level. For me, the time for excuses/patience is over for him (and Frankie, who has already been removed from the rotation). If I were Gardy,, this would be my starting rotation right now-
Carl Pavano- The guy still battles, and should take his regular turn until all effectiveness is lost.
Jason Marquis- Barely hanging in their, and one more bad start away from getting my hook. Couldn't do worse with a youngster.
Scott Diamond- Need to see what this guy has got.
PJ Walters- One of these days I'll actually SEE this guy pitch (just bad timing!), but he seems pretty impressive.
Anthony Swarzak- I don't quite understand why this guy hasn't been given a shot already in the starting rotation this season. I've always been impressed by him.
I want so badly to include Duensing in that mix, but I just have a gut feeling that "reliever" is his calling after struggling mightily in '11 to duplicate the success of '10. Batters just seemed to "figure him out" & he couldn't adapt. Perhaps he's one of those guys who really benefits from not facing the same guy 2-3 times each game. If Marquis continues to struggle, though, I'd still give Duensing a shot at starting again.
I know it sure seems risky to have such a young/inexperienced/unproven starting rotation, but at this point my thought is "what do we have to lose?".