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new trend: turning relievers into starters

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  • new trend: turning relievers into starters

    What do you think about this strategy? in the last years quite a few guys have gone from the BP to starting. texas did that quite a few times (wilson, ogando, feliz), wainwright started as a closer and now bard went into the rotation.

    this is quite unusual since usually relievers are thought as lesser pitchers and usually it goes the other way (struggleing starters turned into relievers).

    I think that strategy is not dumb. of course starting is harder than relieving but since many teams have raw fireballers with control and secondary stuff issues you can already get some value out of them in the pen while simultaniously working on control and offspeed pitches and then promoting them when they are ready. on the other hand develping those guys slowly in AAA ball as starters might be the safer way but if you have all those upper 90s arms it would be stupid not to use them even if they are a little raw.

    has this happened before or is the reliever into starter thing a new thing?
    I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

  • #2
    Chris Sale was the Chicago White Sox's #1 pick a couple of years ago. He appeared in only 11 minor league games, all in relief, before coming up to the Sox at the end of 2010. He was used last year in a set-up role out of the bullpen. This year they moved him into the starting rotation. After five starts, he has a 3-1 record, with a very respectable 2.81 era. However, the Sox finally noticed that they didn't have a closer. They traded last years closer, Sergio Santos, for no apparent reason, and didn't bother to replace him. They thought Matt Thornton could close, although he failed in that role last season. So now Sale is the closer. I don't know if this is a strategy, or desperation, but they're lucky in this age of specialization that Sale is able to serve in either capacity.
    They call me Mr. Baseball. Not because of my love for the game; because of all the stitches in my head.


    • #3
      The Reds tried doing it with both Scott Williamson and Danny Graves a decade or so ago. Williamson had just come off a season where had had won ROY as a reliver, to.

      If the pitcher can do it, it's smart. If he can't, it's not. It's as much about opportunity and needs as it is about strategy.
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