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Jair Jurrjens leaves game early with discomfort in his side

Mar 24, 2011, 4:35 PM EDT


You know what I can’t wait for? I can’t wait for teams that ridiculously put promising young starting pitchers in the bullpen to start complaining about how they don’t have enough starting pitching.  That’s what I can’t wait for.

In the meantime, the non-deluded teams out there realize that there isn’t anything as valuable as a solid starter. And this is brought home when they lose one, like the Braves might:

Right-hander Jair Jurrjens left his start against the Blue Jays after just one inning on Thursday afternoon because of discomfort in his right side. Jurrjens said the soreness originated near his rib cage, but was not related to his oblique muscle. He believed it was a cramp and that he could have continued pitching, but he left the game for precautionary reasons.

It doesn’t sound serious. And if it does — hey! — the Braves just sent down a guy who could do a pretty decent job of filling in if Jurrjens has to miss some time.  He’s available as a starter, you see, because no one overthought things and convinced someone that he should be in the bullpen. Because the Braves understand that you can string together a bullpen if you have to, but that a young starting pitcher is a valuable asset.

And if you think I’m a bit animated about this, well, you’re right.  Because I just wrote my damn Texas Rangers preview in which I pegged everything to Neftali Feliz starting the year in the rotation, and now the Rangers have gone and made that inoperative.  Craigy isn’t big on timing. Craigy isn’t big on editing. Craigy is big on holding petty grudges, though, so yeah, I’m gonna stew for a while.

  1. apbaguy - Mar 24, 2011 at 4:57 PM

    Craigy isn’t a mind reader either, so no way you could have seen the Texas thing coming. On the other hand, those of us who own Jurrjens in keeper leagues are not heartened by the thought of him having two straight injury plagued Springs. We all saw what happened last year.

    • Old Gator - Mar 24, 2011 at 6:30 PM

      Craigy has cleared away so much interference from around his antennae that he should be able to read minds.

  2. spudchukar - Mar 24, 2011 at 9:54 PM

    Starters are more valuable than closers, but nothing is more demoralizing to a team than, consistently blowing saves, and that is what the Rangers were looking at. They tried Ogando but he blew it and they chose not out of want, but need to return Feliz to the closer role. This same line-up got them in front and the Lee acquisition helped them finish there. A little more health from Hamilton, Cruz, and Kinsler coupled with a productive Beltre, may just be enough offense. And Young may still be dealt, most likely for another starter.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Mar 24, 2011 at 11:24 PM

      Look and see the trade cost of a decent reliever vs. a decent starter in a month or two. Closers are cheap, especially with so many in contract years playing for mediocre or bad teams.

      Not to mention, every year Feliz does not start it another year where he fails to develop as a starter. Pitchers should not aspire to be relievers. They should become relievers only when it has been proven that they can’t handle starting for whatever reason.

      • spudchukar - Mar 25, 2011 at 12:04 AM

        It isn’t about aspiration. Feliz has indicated he wants to start. He is very, very young, and his secondary pitches are not developed. The bullpen is the perfect place for extremely talented young power arms. They are not overextended and can grow into the starter role. It isn’t that the Rangers do not see Feliz as a future star starter, it is just their decision that they will win more games with him closing, with their current roster.

  3. cur68 - Mar 24, 2011 at 11:24 PM

    “…discomfort in his right side….the soreness originated near his rib cage…”
    Sounds like the New Black is at it again. Or something…

  4. macjacmccoy - Mar 26, 2011 at 7:44 AM

    Yea the Braves are great and do everything perfect. To bad they wont make it past 162 games this season .

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