Tuesday, March 29, 2005

ST Game 25: Santos' struggles

The Brewers dropped another Cactus League game yesterday, but more importantly Victor Santos' struggles continued. Now, if you've read anything here before (Hendrickson, et al) you know that I despise decisions being made by using spring stats. The sample size is too small, the hitter advantages in the parks is astounding, and the players are much different than those seen on a field once the calendar flips to April. So, count me in the Santos camp. I don't think he will do what he did pre-break last season, but an ERA in the 3.90 range is very likely. That's still about half a run better than league average last season, so he's quite a valuable pitcher. There are definitely reasons to be concerned about Vic, like his crazy HR rate in the second half last season, couple with his 5.97 ERA. His peripherals aren't exactly sterling, so there is some credence to the opinion held by some that he was simply a first half wonder. I think there is an explanation for his second half collapse last season: fatigue. His innings total (154) was his highest total since he was in AA in 1999. His poor spring performance could potentially be traced to his not pitching in winter ball this past off-season.

In reality, he is probably the 4th best starter the Brewers have, following Sheets, Davis, and Capuano. If he can do the league average, the Brewers will have a pretty solid rotation in spots 1-4 dependent on Capuano's health in the 3rd spot. The number 5 spot is another issue, but Glover could do alright. If he's not he could easily be dispatched and replaced with Hendrickson, Obermueller, de la Rosa, etc.

Recap: Angels 14 - Brewers 8
Today: Brewers (de la Rosa) vs. Cubs (Mitre)

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