26 September 2018

September has been an Organizational Car Wreck

A day ago, Jon Meoli wrote this:
They have 19 pitchers on the active roster; seven of them — Alex Cobb (finger), Andrew Cashner (knee), Miguel Castro (knee), Josh Rogers (shut down), Evan Phillips (shut down), Ortiz and Ramírez — are dealing with injuries or otherwise unavailable. That gives them the numbers of a pre-roster expansion pitching staff with a minor league call-up quality to it. September baseball is a manager’s nightmare, but this is a level unto itself.
Injuries happen.  For some clubs injuries and fatigue can coincide in a way where the bullpen and starting rotation is obliterated.  The pitching staff thins out and a manager has to ask the remaining healthy arms to shoulder the burden.  This happens before September.  This happens before the roster expansion.  What the Orioles are experiencing now is something they should not be experiencing.

Not only are the Orioles are experiencing an arms crunch with an expanded roster, but there is no solution.  The club last offseason curiously decided against filling up their AAA roster with fringe starting arms.  I wrote about the problem with that last Spring.  A club needs about three viable starting pitchers in AAA.  A club like the Orioles, who had a measure of breakdown and trading out arms, needs more.

Jhan Marinez, Tim Melville, David Hess, Jimmy Yacabonis, and Jayson Aquino were the Tides starting rotation in April.  Marinez and Melville are relievers.  Yacabonis and Aquino effectively were relievers from their minor league careers.  Hess is a fringe starter.  He, really, was the only one who set out with the Tides who fit the role that the club was apparently going to need.  The perennially short-armed Orioles decided from the get go to be short-armed.  It led to issues earlier in the season and it is how the club finds itself now.

It is a mess.  It is an organizational failure that was foreseeable.


Unknown said...

Does it really matter at this point? Can't the Orioles just throw minor league starters on the mound to close out the season?

Jon Shepherd said...

You need 40 man slots open and you need a pitcher who was not shut down a month ago. You cannot simply just put a guy on the mound.

Unknown said...

Jhan Marinez was not in the Tides rotation at any point in the season. Yefry Ramirez started the season as the fifth Tides' starter.