Go ahead, look back up there and smile. Stare at it — and Wednesday night’s Papelbon misery will fade, you’ll see.
In 2008 Brad Lidge was 41 for 41 in save chances. Go ahead and look all you want, it’s therapy, I tell you. You need it. You deserve it.
Okay, that’s enough, now back to reality.
I’m still pickin‘ ‘em. In three games, there’s positive signs, just like I said. Here they are:
* Hamels is on his way back and it could be sooner than we first thought;
* the Piece went 4-for-13 with a double, a home run, three RBIs, a walk and seven strikeouts against the Rangers, who used two left-handed starting pitchers;
* Kendrick and Burnett look solid in the rotation;
* Utley has five hits and is looking more and more like Utley;
* Byrd has five hits including a dinger and is playing great defense;
* Ashe — after benched for getting 3 hits in the opener, now has four hits including a home run;
* Sandberg is mixing his young guns out of the bullpen nicely — left-handers Jake Diekman and Antonio Bastardo and the rook Mario Hollands and right-hander B.J. Rosenberg; he hasn’t used right-handers Justin De Fratus, Brad Lincoln, and Jeff Manship, yet;
* the team is showing it can score runs — tied for first in the NL with 19 runs;
So what’s up with Papelbon?
Easy. Its so simple even I can see it. He’s lost his giddieup. He can’t make hitters swing and miss anymore. He can’t throw hard so he tries to imitate Jamie Moyer.
Only, Papelbon can’t be like Moyer. He doesn’t know how. He’s blown people away his entire career and now he wants to be Jamie Moyer? Finesse them?
We’ve got a problem here.
Papelbon is owed $13 million this season and $13 million next season, making him the highest paid closer in baseball. Plus, with that money on the line and his giddieup gone, who will take him in a trade?
Did you say nobody?
All right, I hear you. Now let’s get three in Chicago.
Oh, almost forgot. Jimmy and Johari Rollins are about to have their second child.