• Jul
    04

    Buck with questionable BP management in loss

    In just about every game in which the bullpen gives up a game-winning homer, fans and analysts can usually find some kind of "poor" bullpen management that cost the game.

    I normally can see both sides of the argument, but I'm struggling to understand why Tommy Hunter was pitching to Adam Dunn in the bottom of the 9th in a tie game.

    First off, Tommy Hunter worked a clean 8th inning in yesterday's win and had already worked a clean 8th in this game. Second, Buck Showalter had both of his lefties well-rested since Brian Matusz hadn't pitched since June 27th and Troy Patton hadn't pitched since June 30th. And lastly, the left-handed hitting Adam Dunn has been miserable against lefties this year putting up a .138/.269/.323/.592 mark against southpaws. Matusz would have been my choice since he's held lefties to a .141/.174/.266/.440 mark this season.

    I had no problem with Hunter starting off the 9th since the right-handed hitting Dayan Viciedo was leading off the inning, but I can see very little reason for him to face the powerful Dunn in this situation.

    Either Buck has lost all faith in his two left-handed relievers or he's relying on one guy too hard. Hunter has been fantastic this season, but he's only worked on back to back games three times this season until today and in none of those second appearances was he asked to go more than one inning. Sure, Dunn was 0-for-5 with three K's and two walks against Hunter up to this point in his career, but I still see very little reason to push Hunter through that matchup in this situation.

    Saying all this, Hunter needed to be smarter than throw a get me over curveball on 3-2. With Jeff Keppinger on deck and Casper Wells in the hole, he really should not have thrown anything remotely close for Dunn to hit in this situation.

    If I'm Brian Matusz or Troy Patton, I'm wondering what kind of faith my manager has in me if they are not used in this situation.

     

     


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Tony Pente

Tony has owned and operated Orioles Hangout since 1996 and is well known for his knowledge of the Baltimore Orioles organization from top to bottom. He's a frequent guest on Baltimore-area sports radio stations and can be heard regularly on the 105.7 FM The Fan. His knowledge and contacts within the Orioles minor league system and the major league baseball scouting industry is unparalleled in the Baltimore media and is known as an expert on the Orioles prospects.

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