While I am sure that there is more Chris Tillman could learn and more polish he could add to his game in Triple-A the rest of this season, it also seems quite clear by the numbers that he has made major improvements throughout this season.
It’s time for a change in the O’s rotation with Rich Hill out and Chris Tillman in.
Tillman is 8-5, 2.42 in 17 starts and is slated to start for Norfolk tonight. Here’s hoping his next start after that will be early next week in Baltimore vs. Kansas City.
Tillman is 3-0, 0.44 over his last three starts and has allowed 2ER or less 13 of his 17 starts.
The most innings he’s pitched in a pro season is 136. He’s at 93 now, so why not pitch those next 50 or 60 or so with Baltimore?
Reports say he is pitching with his best command all year right now. He can get his feet wet in the Majors now and get ready for his full-time work here next year.
He can then make his first two starts at home and pitch his first game vs. a non high profile opponent.
Meanwhile, Hill’s ERA is up to 7.64. Over his last five starts he has pitched just 22 innings to an ERA of 9.82.
Hill’s mechanics seem to be a mess. His release point is all over the map. Once a month, when everything clicks, he looks very good. Once a month is not enough.
The O’s took a flier on Hill. It was worth the chance for a rebuilding club to try and catch lightning in a bottle. Now it’s time to move on.
Jason Berken, one of the O’s homegrown pitchers who has paid his dues in the minors, deserves more of a shot than Hill at this point.
The O’s have handled pitchers like Bergesen, Berken and Hernandez very well this year. They’ve come to the Majors and handled themselves quite well. It’s time to add to that list.