Relief Help On the Horizon for Arizona?Posted by Jeff Summers on May 16, 2010 in 2010 Regular Season | 0 comments
Another day and another shaky pitching outing for the Arizona Diamondbacks resulted in another loss. The winning streak that began yesterday is now replaced with a losing streak that began today. The team is staking claim to the cellar of the National League West and have last place in a choke hold.
Although today’s loss should be placed squarely on the shoulders of starting pitcher Dan Haren, the bullpen again struggled when called upon in an already one-sided game. While manager AJ Hinch is still publicly standing behind his pitching staff, you have to wonder how much confidence he has in any of the relievers.
General Manager Josh Byrnes is not sitting idly by as a spectator. He is working the phones trying to find help for the beleaguered bullpen. Byrnes had already made one move trading for right-hander Carlos Rosa.
Rosa made his Diamondbacks debut pitching the ninth inning against the Atlanta Braves during Saturday’s game. He faced three batters striking out one for a scoreless inning. Given the other arms in the bullpen, this makes Rosa the most dominating relief pitcher on the staff.
During the series finale the Diamondbacks used five pitchers. Haren had perhaps his worst outing since he has been in Arizona lasting just 4.1 innings. He was followed by Cesar Valdez who has been moved from the starting rotation to the bullpen. Valdez gave up two runs in 1.2 innings work.
With the Diamondbacks already down 9-1, Arizona turned over the game to Bobby Howry. Howry faced five batters in the eighth inning and did not retire anyone. He gave up two hits including a home run to Troy Glaus, walked three, and threw a wild pitch. The four runs moved his ERA to 10.67 for the year.
Howry was to be a veteran presence that would solidify the bullpen. Instead he became the poster child for struggling pitchers. By the end of the day Howry found himself looking for a new job.
The Diamondbacks gave Howry his unconditional release after making a trade with the Cleveland Indians bringing in Saul Rivera for cash considerations. Rivera has had success in Triple-A and with a short stint with the Indians.
Hopefully the addition of Rosa and Rivera will introduce a sense of urgency to the Diamondbacks bullpen. If not, look for the rotating door to continue to spin for the Arizona relief corps.