This Tuesday evening in Minneapolis, Jake Peavy will start his 18th game of the 2011 White Sox season. This season can be described with every synonym possible that goes with the words, “frustrating, and “disappointing,” while the thanks for such feelings can be distributed among many in the White Sox organization. The obvious names that come to mind are let-down free agent Adam Dunn, and outfielder Alex Rios. It’s no secret as to the how historically bad Dunn has hit this season, and he has owned up to his struggles. Hopefully some serious changes to his offseason regiment will make the difference. Rios, a man of few words, will also need to improve significantly in the offseason because the White Sox are stuck with him. However, although Dunn and Rios are everyday holes in the lineup (and a lot of times in the field as well), neither have annoyed me more than Peavy.
Peavy met with reporters following his last start in which he allowed six runs to the Minnesota Twins in the 1st inning, and had plenty to say BEFORE the White Sox played their way out of the division race against the Tigers this past weekend. “I can’t wait to get to winter,” says Peavy. “I’ve been going as hard as I could possibly go since August of last year with rehab and starting a throwing program.” Peavy would later go on to exclaim, “I love to compete; I competed as hard as I could… A few of those balls on a normal day are not close to being a home run and we win that game.” I will give you a second to read those quotes and digest them for a minute…
Well which is it Jake? Are you a “competitor” or are you excited “to get to winter”? Ozzie Guillen described Peavy as the ballclub’s ace before the season began. Before Sunday’s onslaught from the Tigers, Mark Buehrle was 2nd among AL pitchers in ERA since May while leading White Sox starters in ERA and innings pitched all season. Peavy’s days as a rotation’s ace were left in San Diego before White Sox GM Kenny Williams traded for him two seasons ago, but he won’t shy away from a microphone to talk like one…well, to make excuses like one.
I give Peavy credit for coming back after undergoing a surgery no pitcher had experienced in the Major Leagues to date. I applauded him when he volunteered to pitch four inspiring innings in relief months ago, sacrificing his arm for the team. But when the described “Bulldog from Alabama” continues to blame his struggles on that relief outing which he admittedly nagged Guillen to let him in for, or when he complains that the ball is traveling farther than usual when hitters make contact, it is very difficult for any White Sox fan to listen and take him seriously. Maybe be more worried about getting the ball by the hitter like an “ace” is suppose to. Maybe be accountable. Move on from the game and act like its business as usual like the real “ace” in your staff does day in and day out.
This season is on its way to being defined as the worst statistically of Peavy’s career. He has a 5.21 ERA over 105 innings pitched and just 6 wins in 17 starts. In the midst of a pennant race last week, Peavy said he can’t wait for winter. Do the man (as well as the rest of the fans) a favor and make Christmas come early. The White Sox should let Peavy get his rest and rehab that he so adamantly wants and shut him down for the season. Phil Humber and Zach Stewart pitched brilliantly in the Monday double-header against the Twins, and deservedly can round out the rest of the rotation in Peavy’s absence. He cites doctors having told him that he would not be fully healed until 18 months following his surgery. Give Peavy his break. That should last him until the pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training. And give fans a break from the nonsense that continues to escape his mouth in every interview this season.
Any thoughts, questions, comments, and ideas? Please comment below and thank you for taking the time for checking out this installment of PiFF ROW. Check me out when I make my regular appearance in the Man-Land segment on “Down & Dirty Radio” at http://blogtalkradio.com/diy Sundays and Wednesdays from 11am-Noon. You can also find me on Twitter @Mike_Piff03
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