Sunday, April 20, 2008

Pitch In - Pitchin' Stop Bitchin'

Marty Noble is a writer I enjoy reading and today, he did an interesting column titled "Church was ready to toe slab" --Please note, this has nothing to do with the Pope's visit (though I am watching the Sunday Night ESPN game and I wish the Pope blessed the Mets (or cursed Chase Utley's bad as he clubbed 2HRs with 4 RBI).

Noble talks about the rare times when position players are called to pitch, usually during long inning affairs. There is a chart accompanying the article and it reveals that Matt Franco had the privilege of hurling twice. (Ironically, I used to hurl a lot when John Franco got in the game. I really would have rather seen Matt Franco or Julio Franco for that matter, pitch).

It is ironic that when running out of innings too, often pitchers are called to pinch-hit. Though I wouldn't want that to happen when the Mets are playing the Arizona Diamondbacks. They have this one kid, Micah Owings, who wields a MEAN bat... 20 Hits, 60 AB and 4 HRs.

Which leads me to this conundrum...

Ever notice in Little League and High School Ball, often extending past college, that the best hitter (AND player) on the team is usually the pitcher...Where does that line diminish? As you can plainly see the pitcher is most often the easiest out -- YET, they shouldn't be since they know what is being thrown.

Anyway, getting back to the long inning games, let's make a prediction that we will have that situation happen twice this year. Ryan Church and Endy Chavez will be handed the ball...(ANYONE have Rick Ankiel on speed-dial?)

Footnote - Even Ted Williams once pitched an inning...

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