I'm fantastically late on this, but it would morally (yes, morally) reprehensible to not acknowledge the work Philip Humber did by getting through 6 innings while only allowing one run on Saturday as the Sox defeated the Rays 4-1.
6 IP, 4 H, 4 K, 2 BB, 85 pitches. That's not a superstar line, bu to say it'll do is being very reserved.
I can't imagine that Saturday's game can actually be typified as important as there have been less than 10 games played and the Sox have won most of them, but Humber's simultaneous dismissal (I'm assuming) of the temporary 4-man rotation and swift eradication of the stink of Friday's night 9th-inning horrorcore concert represents quite frankly--more than I ever expected Philip Humber to contribute to the 2011 White Sox.
Most of the early season optimism for Humber (what little there was) was
washed away by a Spring Training start on March 24th against the Cubs
where he mixed wildness with hittability. Subsequent sub-par relief
performances convinced most that Don Cooper was wasting his time shining
something that never had much sparkle (this is cleaned-up version of
what I originally wrote)
J.J.--as he is known to do--busted out the PitchFX data
and confirmed what our eyes were already strongly hinting; Humber found
the best time possible to trot out a superb curveball. Not a
change-up, not the cutter that Don Cooper was supposed to have taught
him, but a curveball. The same curve that's been in his repertoire his
If Gavin Floyd's career has been hampered from reaching true greatness
by inconsistency in his curveball, from the looks of the way Humber's
career has played out, I would imagine having a plus-curve is an
occasional happening for him as well.
But with Peavy's mending process going relatively smoothly, Humber
doesn't need to keep it going that much longer, and he's certainly
rolling at the moment.