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Monday, April 12, 2010
Too early to worry about Hoffman?

Tom Haudricourt asks every Brewers fan (and not a few fantasy owners) the Question of the Day:

My favorite Early 2010 Trevor Hoffman Fun Fact: In 2009, Hoffman gave up two home runs in six months; this year he's given up three home runs in six days.

It's a funny game, and it's hard to figure Trevor Hoffman. At this best -- from 1994 through 2003 -- Hoffman threw his fastball around 90 and struck out more than a batter per inning. Then he got hurt, and since then he's struck out fewer hitters but also walked fewer. As a closer, he hasn't pitched a ton of innings plus he's been really good, so there haven't been many home runs. Within that "not many" is room for serious fluctuation, percentage-wise. Hoffman gave up two home runs in 2007, eight in 2008, and two in 2009.

Was he a different pitcher in 2008 than 2007 and 2009? Probably not. He was probably a little unlucky in 2008, and a little lucky in the other seasons. Hoffman's 42, and it's natural to wonder if he's suddenly washed up. But the guy had a 3.43 strikeout-to-walk ratio last season, and I'm not giving up on him yet.