June 08, 2009

Doc. Again.

Roy Halladay did it again. This time a complete game shutout of the Kansas City Royals on only 97 pitches, 73 for strikes. Win number six at home; MLB-leading win number 10 on the year. The man is a marvel.

Mission: Doc, to watch every start Roy Halladay makes this season, has so far been a rousing success. I took in yesterday's matinee for $11. Doc's the best, and by far the cheapest, ticket in town. And while I'm beginning to struggle in my attempts to wrap my head around just how well Halladay is pitching in 2009, I know that watching him certainly never gets old. Everytime Doc is on the mound at the Rogers Centre I sit back for just over two hours, pound a bag of sunflower seeds, and watch in amazement as he humbles the opposition. It's a beautiful thing.

Doc's on pace for 27 victories. I know, "on pace" doesn't mean shit, but think about that for a second; 27 wins. Halladay is in the midst of one of the finest pitching seasons Toronto has ever seen.

I'll see Harry Leroy on Friday, when the Florida Marlins come to town. You should, too.

Before that, however, the Blue Jays have a date with the Rangers down in Texas, Vernon Wells' home state. Since The Cito has chosen to leave Wells in the cleanup spot, I've no choice but to believe in Vernon. I'm thinking he needs my meaningless support.

So: I believe in Vernon Wells. I believe he's going to have a big series at home in Arlington, and help the Jays take three of four deep in the heart of Texas.


Escaped Lab Rat said...

Right now, when matched up against a struggling lineup, there isn't a surer thing than Halladay. I've never felt so confident about a Toronto win as I do right now with the good Doctor.

I have also chosen to believe in Rios and Wells, seeing as we really have no choice. I do feel that if we should fall short this year, next year really will be 'the' year to go for it--Doc will be in his final year (shudder), Marcum and McGowan will be back for a semi-loaded rotation, and we'll have Snider and room for one back to put Wells and Rios back into the 2nd-banana status they really should occupy.

eyebleaf said...

I see your points about 2010. They're valid. But we're 2.5 games out in the AL East, and 2 games out in of the Wild Card. I'm not done with 2009 just yet, and I'm still holding out hope North of Steeles makes his return in August. That would be a huge boost to the team.

William said...

It was good to see that Halladay had no apparent ill effects from the 133 pitch outing. I'm not a big Fan of pitch counts as a law unto themselves. I think it has to be situational as Halladay has proved. But you do have to protect the pitchers as a general rule. The Royals' biggest problem right now is a lack of patience at the plate and a great pitcher like Halladay will eat a team like that for lunch.

Garrett Bauman said...

Maybe Adam Lind should be hitting in the cleanup spot. He's had a bit more pop this year, and putting a left-handed bat a bit higher up in the order wouldn't be the worst idea I've heard. Wells would look better as a #5. The fifth is still an RBI situation much of the time, but there is less pressure to knock the big fly each time up in that spot.

I don't mind Rios in the 3-hole ... usually he's in the .290 BA and .340+ OBP range with close to 20 HR and 80 RBI on the season. Those may not be all-star numbers, but they are decent nonetheless. I love how people will rip on the guy's game, and the need to trade him, without looking at numbers. True, he could be more consistent, but he's not nearly as bad a player for this team as many fans suggest.

eyebleaf said...

@ William: The Royals had no chance against Halladay. I think we all knew that going in.

@ Garrett: Lind should definitely be batting cleanup. The Jays are trying to make Wells something he's not: a cleanup hitter. I also don't mind Rios in the three-hole. I'm not so hard on Rios, in comparison to Wells. I like what Rios brings to the table. He can be frustrating, but he still puts up good numbers when it's all said and done. At the same time, I think he'd be better served further down in the lineup as well. Check out today's post over at The Tao of Stieb, discussing how we'd pencil in the starting lineup:


My lineup against righties would be:


Ian H. said...

V-Dub will have lots of family and friends in the stands in Texas, so he better show them (and us) their money's worth. 2 HR's!

Escaped Lab Rat said...

I like your order. The one concern is that pressing Hill and Lind into the prime spots in the lineup might cause them to pull a Wells/Rios--i.e., they'll be less effective due to increased expectations/pressure. Rios and Wells are good players, but obviously overpaid for what they bring to the table.

Since Scutaro has excelled at leadoff it's a moot question, but I recall Rios hit really well as the leadoff hitter. I wonder if hitting him there forces him to cut down his swing--he's a good contact guy with lots of speed. Maybe all of that time we spent ragging on him to hit for power ended up getting to him.

Is it wrong that I keep voting for Big Papi, Man-Ram and A-Roid for the HR contest? Imagine the comedy.

Stan the Caddy said...

Halladay's ball: strike ratio was incredible, especially when you consider that a good number of the balls were probably waste pitches on 2 strike counts to try to get Royals hitters to chase.... Gotta love the Doctor.

eyebleaf said...

@ Ian: I'm with you. Two bombs in four games. Hell, that's not even asking much. But considering he's only hit five all year, it is.

@ Escaped: Hill seems like he can rake anywhere in the lineup. I can see your point about Lind; we don't want him pressing. In terms of your point about Rios, perhaps it's wise to put him in the two-spot, and put Hill third? I'd definitely be all over that. But I still think Overbay in the two-spot would just be beauty. He just won player of the week, and Cito's leaving him in the 7-spot tonight. The Cito is just way too non-flexible with his lineup. It's becoming stupid.

@ Stan: That's what makes the Doctor so bloody impressive. 73 strikes on 97 pitches. As one of my boys put it: ReDOCulous.

DAN THE MAN said...

Man, the Jays should have traded Rios for McLouth when they could have.

DAN THE MAN said...

Maybe this will be his wakeup call, his breakout game in Texas if an 8th inning double had anything to do with it on Tuesday night.