Monday, February 1, 2010

Washburn Signing Imminent

I'm just saying it to get used to the idea.  I don't like it, but if I were a bettin man, I'd say it's about 75% that Washburn comes back to the M's.

The way I see it, if they go with an 11 man staff, which this Bradley/Garko/Byrnes/Griffey/Saunders/Kotchman clusterf#@# almost necessitates, they're going to need an innings eater.  I wouldn't call Snell and Vargas innings eaters.  You just can't have a bullpen an arm short and have guys going out there and giving you a Morrow-like 4 IP, 103 pitchcount.  Plus, they're not going to burn up a farmhand's arm just to save the bullpen.  But they might leave Washburn out there an extra inning or two even if he doesn't have his best stuff just to keep the short guys rested.  And honestly, Washburn is probably the type of guy that wouldn't mind doing it at this point in his career.

The only alternative is if Johnson and Moore come out looking ready to rake in the Spring and the team figures Garko is an emergency backstop, so they part ways with Josh Bard.  Then maybe we can go with a 12 man staff and then perhaps things change relative to the need for stability in the rotation because they can carry an extra mop-up stiff like French or Olson around. But that seems like an unlikely scenario.

Look, my strong preference is still Smoltz, but he's going to be more expensive (and it looks like he might not even sign until July).  So here's hoping Washburn can rediscover that magic (luck, cough cough, luck) he had as a Mariner for the first half of last season one more time.  We might as well get used to his "gritty-ness".


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