Monday, June 7, 2010
The lesson(s) of Carlos Silva
Craig Calcaterra on the National League's perfect pitcher:
No one saw it, but the Cubs beat the Pirates 6-1 at PNC Park this afternoon. Carlos Silva gave up four hits, struck out five and walked one. He's 8 and freakin' 0, the first Cubs starter to do that since Ken Holtzman went 9-0 in 1967. It was the same story for Silva today as it's been all year: he worked quick, he threw strikes, and he changed speeds. I wonder if there's a lesson in there for anyone.
I don't know. I suppose that's one lesson, but wasn't Silva trying to work quick, throw strikes, and change speeds during those two seasons in which he went 5-18 with a 6.81 ERA as a Mariner?
Among the lessons we might draw are that the National League is easier than the American League, that you shouldn't give up on previously successful pitchers who have been struggling with injuries, and that low-strikeout pitchers are particularly susceptible the many vagaries of luck.
But I'm looking at Silva's numbers this season, and seeing he's struck out 6.3 batters per nine innings this season, after having not struck out more than 4.1 per nine innings in a season since 1993. And I'm thinking the real lesson in this case is an old one: Youneverknow.