I guess it's what happens when your GM spends money like a drunken sailor coming out of anesthesia following a heart procedure:
The Cubs signed a terrible pitcher to a big contract because they think Larry Rothschild can straighten him out.
Oh, wait, I forgot--he's an "innings eater." I keep hearing and reading how we needed one of those.
I don't understand that, at least not as it applies to Jason Marquis. He only pitched a lot of innings because he was healthy enough to stay off the Disabled List and Tony LaRussa had no better alternatives, no bullpen and thus, no choice but to send him out to the mound, time after time, to get pummeled.
Marquis' start last June 21 at U.S. Cellular was probably his worst of the season--5 IP, 14 hits, 13 earned runs--but hardly the only bloodbath. Take a peek.
Over his career, he's averaged fewer than 5.5 strikeouts per 9 innings. (5.5 K/9 IP is the line beneath which almost no one not named Tommy John enjoys long-term success). His lifetime K/W ratio is nowhere near 2:1 and he's given up 948 hits in just 910 career innings pitched.
Even in his best season, 2004, when he went 13-7, he gave up 215 hits in just 201 innings and batters hit .275 against him.
I hope Rothschild has some magic elixir, but I'm not counting on it. (If he really had a supplier, I can't help but wonder why he didn't tap that supply last summer.)
I was thrilled to see the Cubs sign the most coveted free agent on the market, less elated but understanding that they signed the exquisitely mediocre Ted Lilly and now, disgusted that they'll be shoveling nearly $30 million at a demonstrably horrible pitcher.
What a difference 20 days makes.