We’ve been busy here at MoreSplashHits over the past two weeks, so we haven’t been blogging much.
But the last time we posted on the blog we discussed options to replace Ryan Vogelsong in the rotation.
For those of you missed it, our conclusion was Chad Gaudin was the best option.
Bruce Bochy decided to go with Mike Kickham in his major league debut last Tuesday against the A’s.
And as you’ll recall, it didn’t go so well. And that shouldn’t be a big surprise. Making the adjustment from Triple-A to the big leagues is not easy for pitchers.
Mistakes become home runs in the big leagues. That isn’t always the case in the minors. In the minors, you’ll see more hitters who will help you out of a jam than in the bigs.
Those two lessons were taught to Kickham in his start on Tuesday, and they were the reasons he could not make it out of the third inning. After his one start, Kickham was sent back to Triple-A and he’ ll make a start for Fresno on Monday. It’s worth keeping an eye on him. We think he’ll be back with the big club soon as the need arises.
After Kickham exited on Tuesday, who came in to carry the pitching load? Chad Gaudin.
While Gaudin hadn’t started a game since 2008, his work in the bullpen this season in long relief made him seem like the best option. The Giants have a lot of good relievers in Fresno, and it seemed like the best move to start Gaudin and call up someone from Fresno to fill his void in the bullpen.
The Giants went with their Plan A (Kickham) and it didn’t work. They went with Plan B (Gaudin) on Sunday, and it did work.
No surprise to us.
Gaudin pitched six solid innings, giving up only a two-run home run to David Freese in the fourth inning, in a 4-2 win over the Cardinals.
Sunday’s performance earned Gauin another start on Sunday against the Arizona Diamondbacks. It’s a decision that’s a little odd, since the Giants have three days off over the next eight days, meaning the Giants don’t need a No. 5 starter until June 15.
By pitching him on Sunday, it seems that Bochy intends to throw Gaudin in the No. 5 spot all month. On June 11, the Giants begin a stretch in which they play 16 games in 16 days, a stretch in which Gaudin would make three starts.
So while we like the Giants’ decision to go with Gaudin in the rotation, we question the decision to not use the off days to skip his spot in the rotation.
Hopefully that decision won’t come back to bite Bochy, too.