We've had a once through pitching rotation since we've lost the 3 starting pitchers. What do we think?
Brett Cecil: He wasn't terrible (at least compared to the other 2 fill-ins). 5 innings, 5 hits, 1 walks, 5 k and a couple of home runs. He was lucky to face a fairly punchless Phillies team, but still it was an ok start for his first time back. I guess there were a few pitches left up (tough to see at the park), he seemed to mix speeds well (what speed there was to mix). I'm ok with seeing him get a few more starts, maybe as much because we have no real choice, than thinking he'll be much good.
Jesse Chavez: He was terrible. 2.2 innings. He had 2 very good innings and one awe inspiring bad inning. 2 doubles, 4 walks and a hit batter, while getting two outs. I'd generally be willing to overlook one bad inning but this one was beyond bad. Still, I guess, I'd run him out there again, mostly because we don't have much for choices. Since he's been good in Vegas, I'd give him a chance to show that the two good innings weren't flukes.
Joel Carreno: 3 innings. The first one was very good. The second one makes Chavez' bad inning look like....well, still pretty bad, but at least Chavez didn't give up 3 home runs in his bad inning. Carreno did, with a double and a walk mixed in. Joel managed to get through a scoreless third inning, mostly because of a lucky bounce off the back stop on his wild pitch, with some fine work by Jeff Mathis. We saw Joel, last year, and he was very good in relief. Apparently, Joel didn't get any sleep the night before his start, he had to fly into Milwaukee overnight. Because of that, and his track record from last year, I'd give him another start. And the lack of options.
What are the options?
In system options are:
Carlos Villanueva, who none of just wanted to see make a start this year, or any year. I'm warming up to the idea. Not really, I just figure he can't be worse than what seen.
Chad Jenkins, he's having a tough time of it in New Hampshire, 5.20 ERA in 12 starts. But, his last couple of starts have been good. 13 innings, 9 hits, 1 earned, 7 walks (yeah, too many, but that's generally not been his problem) and 7 strikeouts. And he's a ground ball pitcher. They tend not to do as well in the minors, as infielders and infields aren't as good as in the majors. I wouldn't mind seeing him. I'd likely rather see him get a start than Villanueva.
Shawn Hill wasn't good in Vegas yesterday. And he is so well though of that he was pitching in the independent leagues a week ago. He had 4 pretty good starts for us in 2010. I don't want to see him.
And others: Aaron Laffey (looked good in relief yesterday), Andrew Carpenter (3.68 ERA in Vegas), Scott Richmond (5.90 ERA in Vegas), Bill Murphy (4.91 ERA Vegas), Deck McGuire (6.52 in New Hampshire, without the appeal of looking good in his last couple of starts).
Jeremy Guthrie (please no), Matt Garza (who would be nice to get but he'd cost a lot in prospects), and Wandy Rodriguez (I'm not near as much against getting him as I was last year, desperation does things to a guy.vI don't think he would cost us as much in prospect as Garza) . As always, odds are, if Alex does make a trade, it will be for someone we haven't heard mentioned yet.
So what would you do with the starting pitching, the next time through the order and beyond?