Sunday, April 18, 2010

Phillies starting pitching woes continue: Happ hurt

A lot has gone right for the Phillies this season. The offense has been tearing the cover off the ball, Roy Halladay has been as good as advertised and, with the exception of Danys Baez, the bullpen has held its own so far. Of course, you can't help but notice the one thing left off that list: every other starting pitcher besides Halladay has been a big question mark. Joe Blanton got injured in the preseason. Cole Hamels and Jamie Moyer have been shaky, at best. Kyle Kendrick and his 17.47 ERA have been atrocious. And then there's J.A. Happ, who, according to Jim Salisbury, is now dealing with an injury and may miss his next start.

Apparently Happ, who has put up good numbers this season (0.00 ERA) but has been more than a little lucky with runners on base, is experiencing some discomfort in his left forearm. It's an injury that could be nothing or it could be a big deal depending on how he feels in the coming days. Happ is scheduled to make his next start in Atlanta on Wednesday but the Phillies aren't saying yet if he will be able to answer the bell.

For a Phillies rotation that is barely surviving 4 out of every 5 starts, losing Happ for any amount of time would be pretty crippling. With Blanton not ready to come back yet and Kendrick already working his way out of the rotation, the Phillies would really be in need of two starters. Sure, Nelson Figueroa and Andrew Carpenter could fill in if needed but neither should be relied on for more than a spot start or two.

The only positive that can be taken from this news is that, if there was a time for the Phillies rotation to be in shambles, it's early in the season. Still, let's keep our fingers crossed that Happ's arm gets better fast because, while Halladay is great, he can't pitch every day.

1 comment:

hdarvick said...

When Nelson Figueroa replaced an injured Johan Santana in late August 2009, he had 8 starts with a 3.38 ERA. He averaged 6+ innings per start and went 2-6. In his 6 losses, the Mets scored a total of 11 runs (not even 2 runs per game). His last start (the Mets last game of the 2009 season) was a 4-hit complete game 4-0 shutout of the Astros, the only Mets complete game shutout pitched at Citi Field. He can be a part of the Phillies rotation as long as Charlie Manuel wants him to be.