Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Genius Idea for 2010 Texas Rangers: 4 man Bullpen Rotation

The Rangers must manage the innings of their valuable young pitchers: must take all precautions to protect their health. A 22 year old arm is far more vulnerable than a 25 year old arm.

Innings must be built up gradually. As a loose rule, you don't want a young pitcher to increase his season's workload by more than 50 innings above his previous year's output.

Therefore, in 2010, the Rangers ought open the season with Hunter, Holland, Feliz, and Harrison in a 4 man bullpen rotation. When Hunter, Holland, Feliz, or Harrison came into a game, they would typically pitch 2 or 3 innings. If they were pitching well, and thus keeping their pitch count under 50 or so, then Hunter, Holland, Feliz, or Harrison would go ahead and close out the game. Such would be invaluable training. If Hunter, Holland, Feliz, or Harrison had pitched effectively in the 7th and/or 8th innings, there would be every chance that they could close out the 9th inning as effectively as Wilson or Francisco could. Hunter, Holland, Feliz, and Harrison have a full complement of pitches at their disposal. They are trained to go through line-ups more than once.

Francisco, Wilson, and O'Day could fill in when the 4 man Relief Rotation was unable to close out a game with excellence. Each of the 4 man Relief Rotation would typically pitch 2 or 3 innings, then not pitch again for 4 or 5 days (depending on off days). This would protect health while providing valuable pitching experience. Here's how it would look on Opening Day 2010:

5 Man Starting Rotation (pitches 5-8 innings per game):


4 Man Bullpen Rotation (pitches 1-4 innings per game):


As a bonus: Hunter, Holland, Feliz, Harrison would be competing with each other to earn mid season slots in the 5 man Starting Rotation. Competition sharpens.

Down the stretch and into the playoffs, the Rangers would have hard throwing young pitchers both rested and firing away in a 5 man Starting Rotation which might look like this:



emjay said...

That really makes sense and as an "all time" Ranger fan, I'd love to see something like that put into effect.

Dusty Chris said...

Whatever is going to work, I am for. I hope the Rangers get out of a "Cubs" mentality and change things where they can take a legitimate run for the big dance.

gcotharn said...

great minds think alike.

"Cubs mentality"? Do you mean settling for not making the playoffs? Or overspending for Soriano and Milton Bradley, et al?

I might write, maybe Fri or Sat, about whether the Rangers ought empty some minor league talent and go for it now, or whether they ought hold tight with what they have for ooone mooore seeaason.