Friday, August 6, 2010

The Double Standard

The Mets lost tonight.  Jon Niese pitched phenomenally after a rough first inning.  The game took a turn for the worst when Bobby Parnell couldn't retire a batter in the eighth inning and it took four more batters for Pedro Feliciano to get the first out of the inning.

Mets fans were angry, frustrated, tired.   A lot of the displeasure was aimed towards Bobby Parnell.  Fine.  I understand if you're mad at him right now.  He had a very rough outing and lost the game.  I don't understand the people saying he flat-out sucks.  It's his second season in the big leagues, his second season ever being a relief pitcher, and he started the season in the minors learning new pitches.  When he first came up this season he was dominating the league.  Jerry Manuel has admitted he likes to ride the hot arm in the bullpen and for a while it was Bobby.  He was pitching most days of the week and that would take a toll on anybody's arm.  Now, he's still throwing heat, but he isn't as sharp as before.

Hitters go through slumps.  It's looked at as part of the season.  Pitchers can go through slumps, too.  But, when pitchers go through slumps it looks a lot worse.  There is only one pitcher in the lineup at a time.  It's harder for a team to play through a rough-patch in a pitcher's season.  They can't be buried in the batting order.  The pitcher is out their on the mound, with all the pressure.  It's up to them to make the pitches that get the outs.  Sure, there are ways to protect them and get them back, but they're more involved than getting a hitter out of a slump.  There isn't always a blow-out game to put them in, or an easy out for them to get.

Bobby Parnell is going through a slump.  His age and experience mean he may not get out of it as quickly as everybody would like, but that doesn't mean he won't work out of it.

Let's Go Mets!

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