04 August 2009

The Nature of an Ace

It's hard to think of guy who can suddenly lose his control as an ace. I guess it's not just about the ERA or even the innings pitched. There is a psychological component to the the concept of the pitching ace. Aces make a fan feel secure, and walks make a fan feel like the very structure of the game is crumbling. Baseball is about the ball being put into play, about the battle between pitcher and batter, batter and fielder, so when the hitters just watch pitches go by and trot around the bases without any fight it is unsettling. It's like someone gave the other team a cheat code. That's what the coaching signs really are. Cap, cap, belt, belt, left arm, right arm, left arm, right arm, Belly Button, Adam's Apple.

I still consider Kershaw an ace because if I didn't I think that would be a huge overreaction. There is no perfect pitcher. They will all have a poor outing occasionally. But the walks more than anything else shake confidence. Maybe it was an overreaction to call Kershaw an ace in the first place. Maybe he's an ace in training.

Fortunately it doesn't matter one bit what he gets called.

Game 106 Unfair Loss Shares ( Dodgers )

Kershaw -- 1
Weaver -- 1
Manny -- 1

Oh Manny.

Well you came up and we hoped you weren't faking.
But they sent you away, oh Manny.
Well you missed it and flied out to Bill Hall
With the bases left loaded oh Manny.

If only Ray King had been playing right field.

Game 106 Unfair Win Shares ( Brewers )

Braun -- 2
Parra -- 1

Braun was the butter and sugar man, going 4-5 with 3 RBIs and 2 runs scored. Parra was the yeast, rising to the occasion against a tough offensive team. Hoffman almost let the cake fall in the ninth inning, but in the end the sweet treat of a win for Brewer fans was salvaged. To Dodger fans it tastes like dust. Dussssst!

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