I can honestly say I never root against a Brave. Now, if one of my fantasy players is up in a 10-1 game in the 9th inning, then I’m OK seeing him hit a solo homer vs. the Bravos. Other than that, I just can’t do it.
Which leads to the big punctuation mark. I’m ready to see him out of the rotation. Granted, there’s no obvious replacement. As CB has noted, Sims has returned to earth. His ERA climbed from 2.16 in mid-May to 3.54 by month’s end. Newcomb has been OK, but he’s only averaged just over 5 innings a start and he’s walking 5 hitters per nine innings. Blair has sucked, Wisler has sucked. There’s 31-year-old Andrew Albers. He’s pitched decently in relief and starting at Buford. He might soak up a few innings in reasonably competent fashion. There’s no sense rushing one of the younger prospects.
Maybe you just patch it together and see what happens for a few turns through the rotation. Anything would be better than the automatic loss that Colon’s starts have become. My 1990s dial-up-speed work Internet is preventing me from finding some eye-popping numbers to illustrate just how horrific the punctuation mark has been lately. But here’s one: In his past seven starts, he has averaged 4.5 innings pitched and has allowed 31 earned runs. His ERA in that span: 9 flat.The Big Red Machine couldn’t win with him on the hill. (Not that it matters, but Colon doesn’t even have a hit this season.)
So, literally anybody who is good enough to be on a major league roster is at least as good a bet to keep you in a game as Colon is. A -1.6 WAR tells you that. Think of it this way. The guy the Braves bludgeoned in Cincy yesterday has a WAR of -1.3. That guy has given up 21 earned runs in his last 3 starts.
I don’t fault the Braves for giving Colon this many starts. Really, $12.5 million says you have to. But unless he puts in a quality start or something similar, tonight should be it.
On a happier note, Ruiz and Camargo are starting tonight. I’d like to see more of both those guys. At this point, the only possible reason to play Adonis over Rio is to showcase him for trade, but even that rationale is irrational. Clubs know what Adonis is. And you don’t give up high-level prospects for 30-plus-year-old mediocrities with no upside.