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While going back and forth on the Syracuse shuttle this season, Corey Thurman's had a pretty good year. He came up a couple of times without seeing any action, then finally pitched three innings of shutout relief against the Red Sox July 10. Three days later, he gave up a couple of walks, a hit and a run against the Yankees, followed by two perfect frames at Fenway on the 20th. That's a 1.42 ERA in 6.1 IP in the AL, and in his 14 AAA starts, he was 5-3, 4.46, with a couple of valid excuses.

First, he was learning a new pitch. Corey has pretty good command of an average fastball, and his deceptive changeup is his bread-and-butter, but he needed a breaking pitch, and it's been more important to master his new slider than to win. Also, he was returning to the rotation after spending an entire season in the Toronto bullpen as a Rule 5 steal. Though Thurman was named the best starter in the AA Texas League in 2001, it has taken a while to rebuild his stamina. The game Jordan saw him pitch a couple of months ago in Ottawa (and I caught on TV) was a good example; he dominated for four innings, began to weaken in the fifth and was gone in the sixth.

You can completely dismiss Corey's previous big-league start last September. Still a raw rookie who really wasn't sure he belonged, he was visibly nervous, hyperventilating and gassed by the third inning. I'm hoping for a more poised performance tonight; it would be a big success if he goes six innings and keeps his team in the game. Tom Wilson is the catcher, Reed Johnson is in LF, Dave Berg's at 2B and Mike Bordick plays third tonight, batting second against southpaw Jarrod Washburn. It all makes sense -- O-Dawg has been terrible from the right side, Cat hasn't hit anyone lately and Hinske's getting a routine night off, so Delgado's the only lefty bat in the lineup, and Tosca has plenty of firepower on the bench.
Game 110: Thurmanator II | 12 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
_Andrew Edwards - Saturday, August 02 2003 @ 11:09 PM EDT (#95692) #
Every time I check up on any Jays game, Keilty is involved in a scoring play.

Thurman's pitch count is way too high (writing in the third). Suggests a lack of confidence. He can cut it, but he's still just a rookie, really.
Coach - Saturday, August 02 2003 @ 11:18 PM EDT (#95693) #
Corey sure didn't have first-inning jitters; he fanned Eckstein with a hard fastball in a perfect spot, then whiffed Salmon. His best pitch of the night was the 3-2 change that Spiezio missed by a mile. Good catch by Kielty to help get him out of the third.

Reed Johnson, with family and friends in attendance, popped up a bunt attempt first time up, but since has made amends. Sparky singled and came around to score the game's first run on Delgado's 2-out RBI, then was hit by a pitch for the 12th time this year and just scored on a Wells single to make it 5-0 Jays.
_Spicol - Saturday, August 02 2003 @ 11:31 PM EDT (#95694) #
Corey had a couple of economical innings...he's now thrown 64 pitches after 4. That's not bad at all.

Tom Wilson's head isn't staying still when he swings. Somebody fix him already.
Coach - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 12:31 AM EDT (#95695) #
Six innings, 94 pitches, four hits, two walks, five strikeouts and zero runs -- absolutely outstanding for a 24-year old who's had half a season as a starter above AA.

Of course the game isn't over, even though the Sparkplug has scored again. Juan Acevedo is in for the seventh; Candiotti says he's been working with Gil Patterson on a "mechanical problem" that was preventing him from keeping the ball down. Sure enough, he got the first two hitters to ground out.
Craig B - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 12:45 AM EDT (#95696) #
Memo to the file

Re: Thurman

One game is one game, folks, but that looked a lot like a major league #4 starter out there tonight. Very confident, even worked through a really tough sixth when he was getting tired. Light years ahead of his start last year.
_StephenT - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 01:27 AM EDT (#95697) #
New rule: When a manager makes a mid-inning pitching change (i.e. after a pitch or warmup pitch has been thrown in the inning), two intentional balls shall be charged to the incoming pitcher. (Typically, this would mean the batter would start with a 2-0 count, which is a disincentive to make a mid-inning change.)

Exception: when the pitcher leaving the game has faced at least 9 batters, intentional balls will not be charged to the incoming pitcher (so there isn't a disincentive to remove a tired pitcher).

Addendum: if the change is made during an at-bat (i.e. when the count is not 0-0), two more intentional balls shall be charged (this will always lead to at least an intentional walk and likely additional balls to the next batter).

General Exception: intentional balls will not be charged which would force a run to score (e.g. with a 0-1 count and the bases loaded, the count would just change to 3-1).

e.g. tonight, Kershner would have been charged two intentional balls for his manager bringing him in for Acevedo during the 8th inning. That would have caused Tosca to consider bringing Kershner in to start the inning, if he didn't think Acevedo could get through the 8th.

More generally, one-batter pitchers would be of substantially less value. In most games, managers wouldn't make mid-inning changes, and spectators wouldn't even notice the rule.
_Mark - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 01:39 AM EDT (#95698) #
Well, a nice game tonight. Watched almost the whole thing. Nice to get a win.

Some thoughts on the hitters: Wilson just didn't look comfortable at the plate at all. I like Kielty's strike zone awareness and willingness to work the pitcher but it seems like he's hitting with two strikes an awful lot. Still, his 2-out, 2-run single was a big hit. And is it me, or does Kielty lead off a large number of innings? Wells reached base 5 times and had his second (!) two-walk game of the year. If he could cut down on some of those pesky walks he might be able to challenge for Willie Wilson's "record" of 705 ABs (he's on pace for 690 right now)... (haha). I'm never quite convinced about Reed Johnson's ability, but here he is scoring three runs tonight.

I wasn't a huge fan of the lineup tonight, with Berg, Bordick, Woodward and Wilson playing. I thought Tosca might have had Myers pinch-hit in the sixth, but I guess he wanted to give him the whole night off. Woodward came really close to a HR but was robbed by Erstad.

I thought Thurman had a nice game. I worry a little about him, it looks like there's some excess motion in the middle of his delivery but I'm not arguing with the results tonight.

Yet more of Faulds' "inside for a strike" routine...
_rob faulds soun - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 02:02 AM EDT (#95699) #
Is there any chance this is our 2004 rotation:


I could totally go for that.
_Matthew Elmslie - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 09:39 AM EDT (#95700) #
I might prefer:

J. Miller
_S.K. - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 10:31 AM EDT (#95701) #
Elmslie - that's three rookies in the rotation. (Or maybe only two, but Thurman may as well be a rookie). Isn't that a little risky?
I'd like to see JP go out in the offseason and see if he can sign a #3 (better than Lidle or Sturtze this time, though we all acknowledge that Lidle seemed like a good idea at the time). Thurman can be #4, and Arnold/Walker/Miller can fight for #5.
If I recall correctly from a previous thread, it was calculated that the Jays have upwards of 10M to play with this offseason (which includes non-tendering Cat and other such things). That's enough to sign a decent starter and still have 5M left over to fill holes.
_Matthew Elmslie - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 11:03 AM EDT (#95702) #
Actually, Miller's not a rookie either, but I take your point.

I don't see it as a problem, though; sure, Thurman or Miller or Arnold might struggle and have trouble making the transition, but I think you have to assume that they'll succeed or fail independently of each other. If they're the five best candidates (and note that we're assuming five starters and not four) then I think they should be the five starters. If one falters, then we can consider Walker or Hendrickson or whoever as a fallback.

As for the possibility of Ricciardi signing another starter... well, obviously it's possible, but I can't put this pitcher's name down on the list until I know what it is.
Coach - Sunday, August 03 2003 @ 11:28 AM EDT (#95703) #
Yet more of Faulds' "inside for a strike" routine...

Rob, who alternates randomly between "Keel-ty" (incorrect) and "Kel-ty" (correct), also invented his own mispronunciations of "Tschida" and "Amezaga" this weekend. Since he still hasn't learned the rules or the history of the game, you can't expect him to do additional homework on names. Combine that with Candiotti's atrocious grammar -- he "shoulda went" to school -- and you've got the most intolerable combo on the air. Well done, Sportsnet.

When a manager makes a mid-inning pitching change (i.e. after a pitch or warmup pitch has been thrown in the inning), two intentional balls shall be charged to the incoming pitcher.

Great idea, Stephen, but it will never happen. There have been other suggestions (forcing a pitcher to stay in until he's allowed a runner) that try to minimize mid-inning changes, but MLB doesn't seem to care. Fans detest it, but the broadcast sponsors love it. ..
Game 110: Thurmanator II | 12 comments | Create New Account
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