SF Pitching Rotation Order
With Matt Cain declared the Opening Day starter, it got me to wonder about the rest of the rotation. Despite Bochy’s brilliant use of Lincecum out of the bullpen in the playoffs, it’s almost a 100% certainty that he’ll return to the rotation. But what spot? If Bochy decides to go R/L/R/L/R then it can be assumed that MadBum would get the two slot although it’s also possible that Zito would get it with MB switching to the 4. But let’s say MadBum is #2. Do you then go Timmy #3? Because in this pattern that’s now going to shift Voggy to the #5. Is Voggy a number 5? Not to me.
If Bochy doesn’t go with the L/R order all the way through the rotation, I still think it’s likely that MadBum gets the #2 slot and Timmy goes #3 with Voggy #4 and Zito #5. And I think he’d do that mostly because Zito’s already pitched as the #5 and knows he could handle the *label* of being a #5. But Timmy already handled the *demotion* to the bullpen in last year’s playoffs so he probably wouldn’t freak out if he was given the #5 spot.
If we had 6 starters I think the best thing would be to leave Timmy in his *Super Reliever* role that he dominated in last October. Maybe there is something about less time to prepare or less pitches to throw that allows Tim to come out with his filthiest stuff. But we don’t have a 6th starter who could slide into the rotation if Bochy kept Lincecum in *super relief*.
This is a *problem* that’s fairly specific to San Francisco. Most teams don’t have more than 2 or 3 stud starting pitchers. They’re just worried about finding something un-dead to trot out to the mound in the #4 and #5 spots.
Once the season gets underway, their spot in the order will get defined by how well they pitch. I doubt Timmy has a lot of rope with Bochy going into the season. If he’s mailing in the sub par performances we got from him last year he will not last long in the rotation. Last year, he made it all the way to the end of the season before his role changed. This year? I would say middle of May is about the length of Bochy’s tolerance if the *2012* Timmy shows up in 2013…….