FanPost

greg smith- early usage

U-balz, Hammeltime, dlR and Cook had 2009 WARs of 5.7, 3.8, 3.7 & 1.9 respectively- so suggesting that Smith is currently our 5th best starter isnt meant to be disrespectful, the other guys are just pretty good. That said, I find it troublesome that Tracy is planning on starting him the second game of the season. Given that we have off-days the 8th & 12th of April, they could've held Smith back all the way until the 17th while keeping the other starters on four days rest. As is, Smith (owner of just a career 34% ground ball rate) will make 5 starts in April, including 3 at Coors. If they skipped his turn to keep the other guys on regular rest, he would make 3 starts in April, and only 1 at home.

Tracy seems to think there is an advantage to alternating the handedness of his starters, but I really doubt that it outweighs simply limiting the exposure of your worst pitcher when possible. What's more, Smith will be facing Randy Wolf in that second game- a matchup in which the lefty-dominated rox hitters might struggle to score runs. (In 4 starts versus Colorado last year, Wolf held them to a .205 BAA.)

For what its worth, Smith looked decent in Arizona this spring- but it really feels like the team is needlessly playing with fire here in a division that hasn't had a very large margin for error recently. Francis also might be able to come back after missing only the minimum time to push Smith back to the pen- but that also would mean we could have avoided using him altogether.

Eat. Drink. Be Merry. But the above FanPost does not necessarily reflect the attitudes, opinions, or views of Purple Row's staff (unless, of course, it's written by the staff [and even then, it still might not]).

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