Tuesday Night, July 22, 2008
OK, It Has To Happen
I have no idea how they are going to make it happen, but check out what Francisco Liriano is doing so far tonight against Toledo, the AAA Affiliate of the Detroit Tigers...
Six innings... no runs... one hit... one walk... nine strikeouts. He has 80 pitches to this point, so he could go another inning or two.
UPDATE - He threw seven shutout innings. He walked two, gave up two hits and struck out ten. Not bad!
As much as he and his agent's decision to investigate a grievance against the Twins upset me and likely many others, the fact is that Francisco Liriano is back. Is he back to what he was before his surgery? The only way to find out is to bring him up, but his minor league numbers in the last five starts certainly indicate that he is very close and only getting better with each start.
The time has come... Thinking about pitching styles and such, and understanding that Livan Hernandez is not going anywhere right now, I think now that Nick Blackburn is the guy to send to the bullpen. Like Glen Perkins, there is a concern about his innings pitched count. This has nothing to do with his poor start against the Yankees on Monday night. I just happen to think that Blackburn's stuff, as compared to Kevin Slowey, who is maybe the other option, is much more conducive to bullpen work. Again, it could be temporary, but they have to find a way to get Liriano up. Glen Perkins has pitched himself out of contention for a demotion, in my mind. Of course, I am still of the thinking that it would be Brian Bass to be sent down, only because I think that he could pass through waivers, and Rochester could really, really use him! Boof Bonser would not get through waivers.