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Premature Evaluation: The Playoff Rotation

September 20, 2012

Sweeping the Rockies at home is like getting solicited by a prostitute: titillating in a sad sort of way, but doesn’t tell you much about how attractive you are. Maybe the Giants swept the Rockies because they’re a World Series-bound juggernaut; maybe they swept the Rockies because, um, they played the Rockies.

One thing’s for sure: the magic number is four. The Dodgers have to win eleventy zillion in a row and the Giants have to wear their mitts on their heads for the rest of the season just to force a tie. The games in LA won’t mean anything to the Giants except maybe a chance to secure home field advantage in the NLDS. Feels good. Real good. We can get all premature and cocky and, like, talk about the playoff rotation two weeks before the season’s over.

***

So, then…let’s talk about the playoff rotation. Bumgarner, Lincecum and Cain are locks, tired arms and terrible first halves and, uh, only pitching one perfect game notwithstanding. That makes it a two-man race for the final spot between Zito and Vogelsong (assuming a four-man rotation).

Obviously the fact that I even typed that sentence would have been inconceivable* a couple of months ago. And I still think Vogelsong’s recent string of ugliness has been more about bad luck and a few ill-timed mistakes than him falling off a cliff. The stuff looks the same. The scowl looks the same. The results? A tad worse, if by “tad” you mean “holy shit on a shingle.”

Zito, meanwhile, has hopped the mediocre fence and is feeding in the pasture of pretty dang decent. Much like Vogelsong he’s basically the same pitcher he’s always been (as a Giant) with better results. ‘Gin a Zito meet a Vogy comin’ thro’ the rye.

If the season ends today, I’m going with Vogelsong. More because I love his story and I think he deserves a postseason start than because I’d be flush with confidence when he took the ball.

Let’s not lose sight of what’s important, though: we’re talking about the playoff rotation on September 20. The Dodgers…aren’t. Feels good. Real good.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. September 20, 2012 7:38 pm

    I was lucky enough to get down to AT&T one last time today…friggin’ AWESOME to see Panda regain some former glory and then Buster to knock one out right after him…the place went nuts, or at least our section did!!! The only thing that could have made it better would have been if my old boss was buyin’ beers!! 🙂

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