Hello again everyone from beautiful southeast Michigan, where it’s suddenly Summer again, albeit a Michigan summer, with highs in the mid-80′s instead of the upper 90′s. This is what Michigan is supposed to be like in the summer.
Speaking of what things are supposed to be like, isn’t Scott Linebrink supposed to be, like, I don’t know, a major league caliber reliever? I’m not sure he’s really been like, an MLB-caliber reliever at any point in the season, although his top-line stats kind of hid how bad he’s been for a while. Last night was proof that he is not even close to that level. When Fredi went out to the mound and I knew that Linebrink was warming up, I felt like I was watching a horror movie and Fredi was the teenage bimbo who was about to open the door that I knew the monster was hiding behind. “No, Fredi, don’t open the door! I mean, don’t bring in Linebrink!!!” I screamed at my computer monitor. Alas, Fredi couldn’t hear me, or chose not to, as he opened the door that let Linebrink onto the field. And we all know what happened from there.
Seriously, at this point could there be much doubt that bad things are going to happen when you open the gate to the bullpen and Linebrink looms behind it? Runs score for the other guys — in bunches. Hits occur for the other guys — with sickening frequency. It’s pointless to run through an encore performance of all the numbers that Fred has already highlighted. There can be no argument. Linebrink is a disaster waiting to happen. Yet, as long as Linebrink remains in the bullpen, his 94 MPH fastball lurks as a siren song for Fredi Gonzalez, tempting him to open the door to his own doom one more time. Every time it seems, Linebrink unleashes his fastball, which has to be the only fastball in the league that doesn’t move at all; not an inch. Then he throws his off-speed stuff that looks just like his fastball, only slower. You can’t tell his change-up from his slider; they’re both slow and neither moves. Opposing hitters lately have been feasting at about a .500 clip. The ones that miss only do so because they’re in awe of the feast served in front of them.
What’s the solution? It has to be to remove the temptation from Fredi. Linebrink should be given his release, before he can further damage the team. But promos that I heard over the past few nights gave me an idea of a perfect job for him, so he won’t inflate our country’s unemployment figures further. The Braves should add him immediately to the cast at that Fantasy Camp! He’ll fit right in with all the other pitchers who can no longer get batters out, and he’ll still get to wear the Braves uniform that he obviously loves. And Fredi will no longer be tempted to unleash “Freddy”, uh, I mean, Scott, from the pen! It’s a win-win!
That’s my take, and my rant/vent. Surely you all have opinions on “Fright Night; Scotty the 13th” or whatever this horror picture has been. Please share them here!!!