Torre seems frustrated with lack of pitching

He wasn’t visibly agitated, but reading between the lines of what he said this morning, it is beginning to dawn on Joe that this situation is pretty dire after the front four in the rotation. No one seems to want to jump up and take that fifth spot.
“Not yet,” Joe said. “We still have a lot of bodies here, and we’re trying to figure out roles. Obviously, we didn’t help ourselves in that third inning over in Phoenix yesterday. Probably this next go-round, if not already, a lot of these guys are sensing that decisions have to be made. It’s the human element.”
Yesterday, one day after saying the club might have to look at Jeff Weaver and James McDonald for the role if no one stepped up, he said Weaver isn’t a candidate for a starting role — he said it after Jeff faced four batters in that aforementioned third inning, all of four of them reached and scored.
Then, this morning, Joe talked about McDonald, although it was tough to discern from what he said whether James has a good chance or not much chance at all.
“I’m not saying he will be our number-five starter, but first off, the kid has to make the club,” Torre said. “Am I questioning his ability? No. But the thing I have to answer is, will he get enough work here to have it make sense? We think really highly of him, and he did show us in the postseason he can handle the heat.”

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  • phillydodger

    tony – does this smell like a veiled request for Pedro to you? Is Stultz even in the discussion?

  • karmabad

    phillydodger –

    I don’t think Pedro is the answer. He’s coming off of an injury filled season with some really bad numbers. He’s pitched well so far in the WBC, but I don’t think it really warrants an MLB contract…meaning he’s yet to face MLB caliber hitters yet in my opinion. We should have picked up Pettite in the off season. He was our best option (CC was never an option). We’ll be LOADED w/ offense, but our pitching might struggle. Let’s hope for a mid season pick up!

  • Voldomer

    Do you interpret that “first off, the kid has to make the club” to mean:

    a) he still has to qualify for the 25-man roster before we can decide how he will be used, or

    b) his presence on the 25-man roster is a given, but we are not yet sure in what capacity?

    I think it is the latter. Is that how you understood it?

  • Marcel

    Voldomer –

    It’s definitely b), otherwise Torre wouldn’t have used the qualifier, “I’m not saying he will be our number-five starter”

    Translated:

    Although McDonald won’t necessarily be the 5th starter, he will make the club. They just have to decide if he’ll be used enough so as not to stunt his development. For example, the 5th starter is sometimes skipped during a cycle. Or a middle relief assignment that can be spoaradic.

  • BruinFBBB

    There might be another interpretation.

    “But the thing I have to answer is, will he get enough work here to have it make sense?”

    It might be analogous to the DeWitt situation. Meaning, getting consistent ABs in AAA might be better than sitting on the bench most of the week.

    There aren’t always consistent innings for 5th starters and long relievers alike.

  • Voldomer

    Yes, I think either of those could be what Torre meant, as “here” could mean in spring training or on the 25-man roster.

    Either way, it is high praise for McDonald.

  • Voldomer