March 22, 2009

Show #53: Is There Any Controversy with the 5th Rotation Spot?

Kawakami’s shoulder. Glavine’s velocity. Great quotes from Chipper and Tavarez. And the fate of the 5th spot in the rotation.



25 Responses to “Show #53: Is There Any Controversy with the 5th Rotation Spot?”

  1. 1
    Bubdylan Says:

    Enjoyed the show, guys.

  2. 2
    Spicy Tuna Roll Says:

    What’s with the Kawakami hating? He’s probably just being careful and his translator is probably being obtuse. I see 2 wins 1 loss and a team leading (of the starting 5) ERA of 1.86 ? And Zero HR? Especially interesting as he is supposed to give up lots of HR. Are these Spring 2009 stats not correct on You guys read one lame article and get all paranoid…bakayarou!!

  3. 3
    Braves Loon Says:

    I’ll take a little 5th spot controversy; just glad we don’t have to hear anything about Mike Hampton straining himself this year.

  4. 4
    Curt Says:

    Will, stop being a homer for Dos K.

  5. 5
    Curt Says:

    And the reason his ERA is so low is the 5 runs he gave up to the Braves minor leaguers is not included in his stats.

  6. 6
    Steve Says:

    That’s right, Curt. Don’t take that crap!

    And, we weren’t hating (well, Curt was a little) – I think the bigger picture is concern for durability. I don’t want to hear that my new 3yr/7MM per stability guy has shoulder issues in his 1st Spring with the team.

  7. 7
    Curt Says:

    that would be 5 runs are….

  8. 8
    Steve Says:


  9. 9
    Joe Says:

    There’s no grammar in baseball!

  10. 10
    Samurai Man Says:


  11. 11
    Samurai Man Says:

    Samurai Woman (wifey) says “suck it” to the USA and Korea.

    I agree w/Steve that you guys showed more concern than hate. And it is probably correct to be concerned since Japanese managers abuse their pitchers and KK is 33. But for some reason my hunch thinks he is just tired, probably he is working out off the field, still getting adjusted to the US style and schedule, and for some reason his internal governor said, wait a minute, I don’t feel 100%, I need to be careful here, I’m scratching myself. He also might have done it from a sense of honor to not keep a teammate from a legitimate start. Thats my hunch, and lets hope so.

    But as to Curt including the stats from intrasquad games, I think that is a stretch. By your own arguments, the adrenaline from “real” games pushes up velocity and I think it does the same for concentration and also competitiveness. I doubt anyone really treats intrasquad games much more than a practice workout, but he would have brought close to his A game to the “real” grapefruit games.

    And Samurai Man is no homer for KK…He likes Bum Ho Lee from Korea.

  12. 12
    Will Says:

    Amen, Samurai Man. You are so smart. And masculine.

    Isn’t there more controversy brewing in the outfield- can you guys touch on that next show, maybe part of an end of spring roundup.. and can we just all get another amen for how psyched we are for the season..what a turnaround…Give us your updated predictions… GO BRAVES!!!!

  13. 13
    Curt Says:

    5 runs to the minor leaguers counts in my book, samurai-san

  14. 14
    Will Says:

    Curt – I am slightly worried, because you have been right many times this year…but no fair rooting against him just to say I told you so…

    I know the horse is getting a bit rank…but hey lets beat it some more. Those minor league hitters are desperate for a shot and every at bat counts. He’s a confirmed starter and working on building up arm strength. How are his whiffleball stats? Can he play Guitar Hero? About as relevant in my book…but lets agree to disagree.

    He starts again Wed I see. Hope it is a non-issue. Actually, lets wait till the real season to see.

    I’m interested, what are we expecting from him anyway. I say 11-6 with 2.8 ERA. With upside to 14-4 ish. Minimum 8-5. I’ll eat some horse meat if he misses my minimum.

    GO BRAVES!!!

  15. 15
    Steve Says:

    Will, we’ll be doing a season kick-off show on Saturday, April 4 with all our predictions, etc. And good God, man! KK better get more than 8 wins! We could have brought Kyle Davies back for 8 wins.
    Lastly, as I brush away the flies from the dead horse … I’m with Curt on the 5 runs to the minor leaguers. They’re minor leaguers! I hear you that they are hungry, but, he should not be giving up 5 runs to minor leaguers. 5 runs = bad.

  16. 16
    Will Says:

    I’m curious to hear what the expectations are and that is a show we look forward to.

    For KK, 8 games is the minimum, below which I will eat Mr. Ed for sushi. That is worst case, but unfortunately it doesn’t seem impossible. Just looking at his numbers in Japan they declined fom 17- 7 in 2006 when Chunichi won the Japan Series, then 12-8, then last year 9-5. Granted Chunichi Dragons were 12 games behind last year, so the team might not have helped him. Also his appearances dropped from 26 to 20. Was he hurt last year? Great…But so was Dice K, who rebounded nicely from the DL…

    No matter how much I want to root for the guy, it seems to me he is in decline. Actually, the absolute worst case is that he’s a total deluded liar. “I was a star in Japan, and by god I want a taste of the MLB. Especially before this nagging shoulder blows up.”..Oh Crap…And saying 5 runs to minor leaguers = bad, etc. doesn’t exactly help my confidence. So maybe I am now coming full circle to being in the Curt camp. God forbid!

    The question is what happens once he comes to the US. Will he break out under Bobby and with a good team around him? Curtis mentioned early on he doesn’t have any funky delivery like Nomo, and by now you have to think that the majors are used to Japanese pitching. Another guy he’s compared to is Kuroda, who signed a 35 million deal with the Dodgers. They are about the same age, etc. In 2008 Kuroda was only 9-10 with the Dodgers, a team that went to the playoffs last year. The year before in Japan Kuroda was 12-8. Lifetime, Kuroda’s stats in Japan aren’t as good as KK, so there is some hope. But overall, the numbers point to about a 10 to 12 win season for KK.

  17. 17
    Steve Says:

    Five Innings: One hit, one run, one walk, and three strikeouts. 40 strikes in 66 pitches. OK, I’ll feel a little better about KK for the time being.

  18. 18
    Curt Says:

    Good start yesterday against major leaguers so that was great. And Chipper had a nice day too. Of course Mike Gonzalez got shelled (one of my other worries) and Soriano is hurt again. One step forward, two steps back. But I think I picked Dos K to win 14 games and that is what I hope we get out of him. 14-8 something like that. And watching the WBC, you can see that the Japanese pitchers can not only compete, but excel against this high level of competition, so I’m hoping Dos K is inspired by his countrymen and blows doors. Maybe we can resign Jung Bong off of his nice work for the Koreans as well. So we can all once again chant – “No hits off the Bong”

  19. 19
    Steve Says:

    And I loved KK’s 12 to 6 curve. Can’t wait to watch that all season. I really liked what I saw last night. But the homers are going to be gruesome at times.

  20. 20
    Curt Says:

    So much for the controversy as Hanson and Reyes got sent to Gwinnett today. So did Clint Sammons. Heyward and Freeman got sent to Myrtle Beach.

  21. 21
    Will Says:

    Did any of you watch the last 2 innings of the Japan-Korea final in the WBC? Did you watch the Japanese closer Yu Dervish? Holy sinker, batman. He has this low fastball delivery and then using the exact same delivery the fastball suddenly drops and sinks outside. Its the nastiest thing I’ve ever seen..Is that called a sinker or a slider? It got the first guy to strike out..just made him look the fool…Dervish then got a bit wild and walked two and gave up the game tying runs..but then recovered in the 10th.

    I read that Atlanta tried to sign him but he apparently wanted to stay in Japan. Apparently was too busy playing pachinko (while smoking) and getting a Japanese movie star pregnant out of wedlock. It sounds like he and Chipper and Wohlers would have been buddies..

  22. 22
    Curt Says:

    Sounds like a split finger fastball. He looked pretty solid. I think I caught him smoking and impregnating waitresses in the dugout.

  23. 23
    Steve Says:

    I read a recent quote from Dervish saying he’d retire before playing for MLB. He thinks there need to be more Japanese baseball heroes for the kids in Japan.

  24. 24
    Will Says:

    Just one last comment…Dervish not wanting to leave plays to the fans here big time. But pardon my language, he is being a total p*$$y. Is there any thing closer to Nirvana – smoking, playing addictive video games, shagging pop stars, being a national hero? If he came to the States he would just be another Japanese athlete. (Madonna might like him…)

    Most people in the US I think take it for granted that everybody wants to come. Its just not true, and in ways that we don’t really understand it is tough for guys like Kawakami to break out of their shell/comfort zone and try to perform in the big bad USA….so far he looks to be doing very well…we might have a samurai on our hands…..GO BRAVOS!!!!!!!!!!!!

  25. 25
    Curt Says:

    There was a parallel article to this when the Braves were looking to sign Griffey. He, apparently, could have been a Brave when he was first a free agent. He really wants to be loved and knew that he had a better chance of blind adoration if he went to a lousy Cincinnati team, as opposed to playing for championships, and playing under more scrutiny, in Atlanta. He doesn’t like to be out of his comfort zone, and that was cited as another reason he chose to go back to Seattle. He could get away with more, and offer less on the field, and still be loved by the fans and city. And the laughable notion that the pressure is too great in Atlanta. Do we hold any coach or athlete accountable for anything in this town? People still love Rocker and Vick here. But Dervish is not alone in his cowardice when it comes to the unknown. Those guys play over here too.

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