Chris Capuano was the picture of mediocre from 2003 to 2007. If you were playing baseball during that era, someone in your mixed league owned him at some point. He was probably comparable to someone like Rick Porcello or Homer Bailey today as far as where his numbers actually turned out (he wasn’t as highly regarded as those two). He was an all-star in 2006 and won 18 games in 2005.
After 2007, there was doubt that Capuano could ever pitch again. He has had two Tommy John surgeries and went over 32 months between appearances on a Major League mound. Capuano did make it back last season though. And this season he has not spent any time on the disabled list while throwing over 150 innings to date. That alone defied the odds, but his start yesterday against the playoff-bound Atlanta Braves was storybook material.
Capuano struck out 13 and walked none in a complete game 2-hit shutout. Michael Bourn struck out four times in four at-bats. Dan Uggla said it reminded him of the Capuano he saw when he first arrived in the big leagues. Capuano threw the curve ball for strikes early in the count and also utilized his change up with terrific control. It was likely an easy decision for Terry Collins (and not just because of the alternatives in the pen) to leave Capuano in for 122 pitches.
Now does this mean he should be added and started next time out? Not exactly. Before tonight, Capuano had just one quality start over his last starts – and in that game he had allowed two home runs. Where Capuano could be useful is to teams that are in desperate need of strikeouts. Before this start again Atlanta, Capuano had struck out 13 in 11.2 innings in two prior starts. His 7.70 K/9 is certainly above average and being in a better groove of late only solidifies his place as an answer for teams struggling in the strikeout category – as long as those teams aren’t having problems in ERA or WHIP too.
- Brett Lawrie hit another home run yesterday. Alex Anthopoulus said that he has no regrets about not calling him up to begin this season from a development standpoint.
- Lance Berkman hit his 30th home run.
- Ryan Dempster has a player option that he says he will have to consider after the season. Given the thin market for pitching and the fact that he’s in his 30s it’s hard to imagine that he won’t try to hit free agency.
- Carlos Carrasco could begin a throwing program next week and Grady Sizemore could see action in some rehab games.
- The Orioles got an emotional and uplifting win over the Yankees yesterday.
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