"We're all waiting for Gavin Floyd and John Danks to come back," my mother opined to me over our weekly Sunday dinner together, "but has anyone pointed out that they haven't been any good?"
"They'll be fine", I said dismissively, foolishly thinking this would be enough.
"They haven't been any good."
"Danks was terrible, but he was hurt, and Gavin's....mercurial, but he's been shaping up recently...or had been, before he got hurt too."
That explanation is only getting an unconvinced grunt out of my mother, and it's going to need stand up to even bigger tests going forward. Floyd climbed the Twin Peaks in his last start, but still has the 5.87 ERA in over 100 innings against the franchise that will surely be brought up one or twelve times before and during his start against Minnesota on Monday.
Gavin's always had the capability to dominate any lineup when he's on and be annihilated by the most mundane group of major league hitters when he's off, and more than ever this season predicting that has been harder than guessing the location of lightning strike. The fact that he's facing a red-hot Francisco Liriano certainly reduces the chances he earns a winning decision.
Danks dreams of mounds
With Philip Humber looking less like a stabilizing force and more like someone who needs to be kicked out of the rotation, the White Sox need to have no more problems from Floyd, and a healthy Danks.
It was a big week for the latter cause, in the sense that there has actually been some progress where previously there was none. Danks has been playing long toss, and could be up for mound work "soon".
No starter--besides, oddly enough, Dylan Axelrod and Jose Quintana--covered themselves in glory this week, but a positive step from Floyd and something approaching a return timetable for Danks could help take Kenny Williams' attention away from the rotation. If the Brett Myers trade proved anything, it's that adding to the bullpen can be cheap, fun, and not particularly deleterious to pre-season goals to improve organizational health and depth.
The White Sox playoff odds as calculated by Baseball Prospectus dropped to 43.7% this week, and generally the sound response to reduced odds is not to start betting more.
Donnie Veal is the man who will be made to suffer a trip to Charlotte for Floyd's return off of the disabled list. It's a curious move, since Veal looked outstanding in striking out three of the five batters he's faced since making his debut on Friday, and the similarly-styled wild lefty Leyson Septimo has seen his approach fall apart after also having an impressive first two major league appearances.
Granted, the White Sox conceptions of the two players probably are more detailed than the results of a handful of major league appearances, and Veal's walk numbers in Charlotte indicate there will be plenty of wildness to suffer through if he's left with the big club, but this doesn't read as merit-based.
Just passing this along...
Comcast is casting White Sox fans for an upcoming commercial. Should you get cast, it pays $500 per day of shooting, and an additional $1,500 when it airs. All you have to do is provide the following information to apply...
3. Why are you the #1 Sox fan? (Hint: Don't threaten to kill off all the others)
4. Contact Info
5. Are you a Comcast/Xfinity subscriber?
...and send it to email@example.com.
Don't say I never forwarded you guys possibly lucrative corporate promotional info, and let me also say that while I would find someone answering #3 with "I go through the trouble of reading James' stupid blog" hilarious, it probably won't be good enough to win.