I drove in heavy rain to get to Nationals Park, and though the precipitation has stopped, the forecast for the rest of the day isn’t promising. That’s an ugly sky overhead. The tarp’s been pulled off the infield, but it hasn’t been rolled up. The mound and plate remain covered.
Perhaps we’ll find out soon whether Koji Uehara is going on the disabled list. I don’t see the point in waiting, since manager Dave Trembley mentioned last night that Uehara wouldn’t be available today. The guy hasn’t picked up a ball or tried to play catch.
Having Kevin Millwood on the mound today increases the changes that Trembley can lay off his bullpen until late in the game, so that’s a plus. And tomorrow’s an off-day, which brings another reprieve.
You had to know something was up with Uehara when he still wasn’t able to pitch yesterday. It can’t take him three days to catch his breath.
If that was the issue, he’d need a cab to get from the media parking lot to the stadium entrance.
Fans screaming for Trembley to remove Brad Bergesen after five innings yesterday need to take into consideration that Cla Meredith had pitched in three consecutive games and Jason Berken threw 75 pitches on Thursday. Trembley wanted to lay off Matt Albers and Will Ohman, but they both warmed up last night.
Trembley isn’t blameless for the bullpen being taxed - he’s the manager and he makes the moves - but the starters have let him down. Jeremy Guthrie was sensational on Wednesday, but the Texas heat knocked him out after the sixth. Brian Matusz turned in the shortest outing of his major league career on Thursday. David Hernandez one-hit the Nationals on Friday, but he covered only 5 1/3 innings. Bergesen couldn’t record an out in the sixth yesterday when the Orioles desperately needed him to go deep.
The rotation has provided 22 quality starts in 44 games this year. In 2009, it didn’t register its 23rd quality start until the 69th game of the year on June 21.
You won’t find me griping about this year’s rotation, but it hasn’t exactly shined on this road trip.
Shameless plug alert: I’ll be joining MASN’s Amber Theoharis on O’s Xtra, and I’m sure Uehara and the bullpen will be popular subjects.