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April 16, 2009

Patton lights up Baysox home opener

Won't be long before Orioles fans are clamoring for Troy Patton to get the call to enter the major league rotation, especially after he dominated the Akron Aeros for the second time in this new Double-A season.

Patton pitched six scoreless innings tonight in the home opener at Prince George's Stadium, giving up three hits and striking out six. He now has pitched 11 scoreless innings in his first two appearances for the Baysox. Not bad for a guy coming off labrum surgery.

troypatton.jpgClub officials indicated during the spring that they believe Patton should stay in the minors for much of the season because of the time and experience he lost after getting his shoulder fixed. That may be the plan, but Andy MacPhail told me on Tuesday that he will not hold a guy back if he's "cutting through his level like a knife through butter."

Patton definitely isn't a candidate to come up soon, but he might be headed to Triple-A ahead of schedule, which could put him in position to get a call later in the season.

Left-hander Wilfrido Perez, who was so impressive in major league spring training, nailed down the 2-0 victory to record his third save. He has yet to give up an earned run.

Bonus minor league update: Chris Waters bounced back from a rocky first Triple-A outing and pitched six shutout innings against Charlotte. He gave up just two hits and struck out four and, yes, is under consideration for a start next week.

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 10:04 PM | | Comments (20)
Categories: Just baseball


Pete, let's be honest--the two of us, about 600 pounds of O. C. muscle, could do as well as Liz and company.

We could go out there and serve up two innings of gopher balls, and leave the mound in disgrace (if I didn't have a heart attack). All done in the name of the Sunset, Freeway, and Century Leagues.

In other words, these guys are clowns who are obviously outclassed--how much worse could Bergeson or others do than the parade of palukas who have been coming up to "pitch" for the Orioles.

Pete's reply: I don't think there's any doubt that some of the younger guys could do as well or better. I think they're just being cautious with them, though that could change faster than expected. And, for the record, I never played in the Sunset League because I got cut from the Santa Ana High baseball team three years running. Why do you think I carry this damned laptop around with me all the time?

I'm going to continue to ignore the Orioles for the second straight year until they have more than one major league starter, AND Jamie Walker is no longer on the team. Their pitching is unbearable to watch when Guthrie's not on the mound. I'd rather watch the Cartoon Network than Walker, who is a cartoon of sorts. He's a caricature of a pitcher rather than the real thing.

Pete's reply: I watch the both Orioles and the Cartoon Network. Why should anyone have to choose?

I'm assuming the reason you left out Wieters' home run is that it deserves its own post, right? :)

Pete's reply: No, it means he's so good that I wasn't that impressed.

But what's gained by being cautious with Bergesen? Are they going to keep him in the minors for the entire year, and prevent his free-agency clock from starting until May '10? Not a chance.

So why make a 23-year-old with good command throw 2, 5 or even 10 more successful starts at AAA? There's gained by doing that.

I understand leaving Tillman down there for the year. 21 is different from 23 or 24. Two professional seasons is different from 3 or 4. I'm fine with not seeing the other crown jewels until next year some time. Tillman and Arrieta can wait.

An earlier post of yours made it seem like we're impatient fans. Some may be impatient, but I'm not. To borrow from Dennis Green, Simon, Hendrickson and Eaton are who we thought they were. And I'm OK with it. But now one of them is hurt, and we need to find a replacement, and we need a starter on Mon or Tues. It needs to be Bergesen or Patton. There's no reason for it not to be one of them.

Pete's reply: I may have to check back with the O's on Patton. They had a rationale for what they are doing with him, which I think has to do with not putting too much pressure on his repaired shoulder early this year. Double-A isn't the same as the major leagues. It's easier to keep a guy from over-throwing there. But he obviously is throwing very well.

Where did all these high expectations come from?

The O's have won three straight series, against three of the best offensive teams in the AL, and people are bitching like we're a top AL contender that needs to shore up it's top-flight rotation before playoff races start to gear up at the all-start break.

News flash: a .500 finish would be PHENOMENAL for this team and well above preseason expectations.

Y'all need to came down a little. McPhail built a WS winner out of a last place club, I think he knows a little better than we do what the right moves are.

When Andy made the trade for Patton and company, he said that Troy was worth the risk because of his huge upside. I am just hoping that they go slow with these kids because I do believe that the O's have a good plan in place, but these young pitchers are the key, so if the are rushed, hurt or shuttled back and forth, the plan is in trouble.

I have to say that I don't get how people are saying Penn was the one blemish on Andy's record, as one nice relief appearance and he is the new Joba? At least give it to the All Star break before saying who made out better.

Pete, do you have a list of guys that you personally don't want to see rushed to the Orioles? Matuz, Tillman and Patton are tops on my list.

Pete's reply: By definition, I don't want to see anybody rushed, but I would be very careful with Matusz (because of his inexperience) and Patton (because of his shoulder). I think Arrieta and Tillman will be able to adjust to whatever they need them to do.

I am more excited for Patton than Bergensen. Patton was a gamble that could reap huge dividends. The Orioles knew Patton needed season ending surgery and the Reds let him go not knowing if he would ever come back and be the same. They knew he had the potential and the talent to be a front of the rotation guy. If he is completely over his surgery, you could see him move up after All Star break with Weiters. I am hoping they move Bergensen along with him. Get Hendrickson and Eaton out of there. If Simon does not show his form from spring training, then the next logical move would be to put Rich Hill in there too. That would be a starting rotation worth looking at. Better than whats out there now anyway.

I'm going to continue to ignore the Orioles...

... and yet, here you are..... ;)

easy - if you are ignoring the Orioles, how come you are reading Schmucker's blog about them? Since you are not watching them, I'll let you know that Walker hasn't given up a run this year, has a 0.00 ERA (redundant, I know) in 2 2/3 innings over four appearances, and pitched a whole scoreless inning his last time out. Give the guy a break. He was hurt last year, this year seems to be healthy. And the Orioles have nobody to take his place, or else he might not have made it back this year.

But you have a solid point about having more than one ML caliber starter. I think Uehara will turn out to be one, but it's too soon to tell for sure one way or the other.

It would be a massive mistake to bring Patton up this year, imo. He may be cutting through AA like butter, but the added internal pressure at the MLB level will likely cause hit to try to overthrow or sacrifice mechanics as he struggles for results. That is exactly the opposite that you want for a guy rehabbing from a major injury. If Patton is important to the future, then his future is NOT now or this season, not at the MLB lvl.

I think Patton will be (and should be) in Norfolk soon. I believe he has had some AAA exposure with the Astros and the way he has looked at AA he may be pitching below the level of challenge he needs. Plus, he needs to get knocked around every once in awhile to gain the ability to bounce back menyally from a trashing. I would not expect to see him in Baltimore until Sept unless he starts buzzing thru the IL like he has the Eastern so far. You have to like the way he has bounced back from last yrs surgery. I wouldn't expect to see him in Baltimore til August at the earliest, but who knows. This could really tip the scales on the Tejada trade.

Dear easywriter01,

You are doing a great job of ignoring the Orioles having commented on the team and two of it's players this morning in the Sun. Keep up the good work.

Yeah there pitching is horrible but I'm enjoying watching the offense.

Why bring him up? He's coming off shoulder surgery. Keep him in the minors for the entire season, then see what he can do next Spring.

I completely agree w/ you about Patton.

But the scales on the Tejada trade tipped towards us a long time ago. He had a .729 OPS last season...
His range diminishes by the day...
He's probably 44 and continues to leave a trail of steroid disgrace...
He doesn't have an RBI this season...

We're lucky to have gotten 1 productive MLB'er (Luuuuke) out of the deal.

I'm going to continue to ignore the Orioles...

... and yet, here you are..... ;)

Good one JTB! and by the way, whats he all upset about Jamie Walker anyway, looking at his stats he appears to being doing a little better than say Liz or Bass!

For those who think we should get Patton up to the majors ASAP, I offer two words: Adam Loewen.

question - did Patton's MLB service time already start from his time with the Astros? How long is he under the O's control?

Pete's reply: Whatever major league service he accrued he keeps, but he doesn't get any more until he gets up. I think the O's have him for quite awhile.

I'm finding it hard to watch the Big Club's pitching also, but I understand the need to be patient. I also understand the comment about ignoring the O's until some of the kids start coming along. I think we need to strap in and live through the unpleasantness of this year and focus on what WILL be in the future. OBTW, I believe Patton will be a good MLB pitcher based on what I've read on him, but the fact that he has pitched well against the same team in back-to-back starts doesn't equate to dominating the Eastern League.

Guys, we're kicking a dead horse here, (even though a dead horse may fit very well into this rotation). I don't know if any of the young guys could help. We've been down that road recently with Liz, Burres, and Olson. That didn't work at all and the FO may be thinking of a repeat situation. I'm glad we posters don't get a vote.

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About Peter Schmuck
Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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