Morrow to Tacoma to Convert to Starter

Dave · August 5, 2008 at 2:20 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Huzzah – it’s a year and a half too late, but Brandon Morrow is finally heading back to the minors to get ready for his future as a major league starting pitcher. Jared Wells takes his roster spot for the next few days, and then will go away when Ryan Rowland-Smith is recalled to take Miguel Batista’s spot in the rotation. Batista will move to the bullpen.

Nice to see this team finally looking towards 2009.

Comments

47 Responses to “Morrow to Tacoma to Convert to Starter”

  1. WardP on August 5th, 2008 2:22 pm

    Mark your calendars. Perhaps the hibernation of the Ms front office ended today.

  2. robbbbbb on August 5th, 2008 2:24 pm

    Can Morrow get stretched out enough in the remaining minor league schedule to be a competent starting pitcher by next year? I have to say I’m doubtful.

  3. Swungonandbelted on August 5th, 2008 2:25 pm

    Good to hear that they are finally going to do what they should have done with Morrow two months ago, I was a bit disappointed though to hear that the press release didn’t include Turbo and Cairo being DFA’d. Maybe that can be tomorrow’s feel good moment of the day.

  4. eternal on August 5th, 2008 2:27 pm

    sweeeeeeeet!

  5. wlad on August 5th, 2008 2:31 pm

    Felix – Bedard – Morrow… Beautiful.

  6. CaptainPoopy on August 5th, 2008 2:34 pm

    About f’ing time!

  7. cody on August 5th, 2008 2:41 pm

    So starting rotation 09′ may look something like this:

    Felix(please keep him)
    Bedard(6 innings a start would be nice)
    Washburn/Silva/Batista/hopefully not another overpaid pile of crap
    Morrow(this will be interesting)
    RRS(so will this)

    Not bad really. One really good young pitcher and two other ones that have shown competence in the bullpen and someday may be quite good. Bedard will be good if he can stay un-injured and maybe throw 6-7 innings every start.

    Then again, there’s also a lot there that could go hopelessly wrong.

  8. smb on August 5th, 2008 2:43 pm

    Plus we’ll still have possibly the worst offensive lineup in the league, so there’s that. But hey, baby steps, baby steps…

  9. Grizz on August 5th, 2008 2:44 pm

    So is Morrow only going to be allowed to throw changeups to make up for the fact that he has thrown only 49 changeups in the majors over the last two seasons?

  10. dnc on August 5th, 2008 2:52 pm

    cody – what makes you believe that only one of Washburn/Silva/Batista will be in the rotation? It seems almost a foregone conclusion that Silva will be around, so there’s one. I could see them cutting Batista, maybe. I can’t see them cutting Washburn, so it will come down to whether we can give him away.

    My gut says two of them start the year in the rotation. I imagine RRS is most likely not to be around, unless a) Bedard is traded or b) Washburn is given away and Batista is cut.

    But yeah, if Morrow can be at all effective it makes the rotation that much more formidable. I have a feeling it’s going to be a rough transition for him though, at least at first.

  11. mak52 on August 5th, 2008 2:53 pm

    But with Batista going to the bullpen, we are losing some opportunities for Mariner history. Batista Watch 2008, will he… “Pitch for The Cycle“. (To be official; the single, double, triple and HR have to be in 1 inning.)

  12. smatbte51 on August 5th, 2008 2:54 pm

    Felix, Bedard, Morrow, RRS, Wells. I don’t care if Wells sucks at least he’s not Washburn/Silva/Batista.

  13. Mr. Egaas on August 5th, 2008 2:58 pm

    Can’t wait to see him “Establish the fastball.”

  14. msb on August 5th, 2008 3:01 pm

    Can Morrow get stretched out enough in the remaining minor league schedule to be a competent starting pitcher by next year? I have to say I’m doubtful.

    FWIW, when Norm was asked that a while back, he seemed to think 2 weeks would do it …

  15. crazyray7391 on August 5th, 2008 3:11 pm

    Felix, Bedard, Morrow, RRS, Wells. I don’t care if Wells sucks at least he’s not Washburn/Silva/Batista.

    So have we given up on Dickey being a possible starter? I’m with you, I don’t want to see any part of the terrible trio in the rotation next year, but wouldn’t Dickey be a more likely canidate for the fifth spot than Wells?

  16. Max Power on August 5th, 2008 3:13 pm

    So have we given up on Dickey being a possible starter? I’m with you, I don’t want to see any part of the terrible trio in the rotation next year, but wouldn’t Dickey be a more likely canidate for the fifth spot than Wells?

    I was wondering that too but also with respect to Feierabend. His outcomes look a lot better this year albeit in limited action. Has he improved or is it just noise?

  17. dnc on August 5th, 2008 3:16 pm

    I don’t think the issue with Morrow is getting stretched out nearly as much as it is getting acclimated to facing hitters 2 and 3 times a game. He has to learn to rely much more on the offspeed stuff (particularly the change). This is going to take time to develop.

    He could stretch out enough to start full-time before the end of this season. I’m not sure he can acclimated to starting in time to be anything short of a disaster in next year’s rotation.

    Honestly, I’d feel better if he were heading to Double A.

    I just hope the M’s have enough patience with him.

  18. cody on August 5th, 2008 3:17 pm

    10- Well, I think they’ll put Batista in the bullpen (or release him). And there’s the possibility that they put Washburn out on waivers. Silva will sadly still be around since the the day they send his contract down is the day hell freezes over. So that eliminates two and makes what I said possible

    But that’s all tentative at this point. We’ll really have to wait and see what happens.

    We could also throw Dickey in there, he’s not great, but at least he’s mildly entertaining. It’s not like we are going to contend either

  19. Sports on a Schtick on August 5th, 2008 3:19 pm

    Vidro’s gone!

    YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA fdhskalfhadslfhs EYAAEEEEAA!!

  20. kentroyals5 on August 5th, 2008 3:19 pm

    BASEBALL IS GREAT AGAIN! I HAVE HOPE!

  21. dnc on August 5th, 2008 3:21 pm

    Best. Mariner 24 hour period. In years.

  22. Saberfan on August 5th, 2008 3:22 pm

    So have we given up on Dickey being a possible starter? I’m with you, I don’t want to see any part of the terrible trio in the rotation next year, but wouldn’t Dickey be a more likely canidate for the fifth spot than Wells?

    What makes you think Wells will be starting? He’s replacing Brandon Morrow, RP. In a few days we will see either RRS or Feierabend come up to take Jared’s place on the roster.

  23. smatbte51 on August 5th, 2008 3:29 pm

    Where did you hear Vidro is gone?

  24. scottiedawg on August 5th, 2008 3:32 pm

    Let’s see what sound better
    #4 starter Jarrod Washburn
    #5 starter Miguel Batista
    closer Brandon Morrow
    DH Jose Vidro

    OR

    #4 starter Ryan Rowland Smith
    #5 starter Brandon Morrow
    closer JJ Putz
    DH who really even cares? it’s not Vidro!

  25. Swungonandbelted on August 5th, 2008 3:32 pm

    Just heard from the Groz on KJR, Turbo’s been DFA’d!

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

  26. CaptainPoopy on August 5th, 2008 3:32 pm

    Tribnet M’s blog says Vidro is DFA’d.

  27. jephdood on August 5th, 2008 3:36 pm

    Oh, thank GOD!!!

    (dance of joy.. dance of joy.. dance of joy..)

    A Vidro/Cairo ’2-fer’ would have been nice, but I’ll take this.

  28. MattThompson on August 5th, 2008 3:37 pm

    Wow, what a day. Morrow finally starting, and Vidro at long last is gone. The two most obvious moves ever, but I guess it’s better late than never.

  29. smatbte51 on August 5th, 2008 3:37 pm

    What has happened to the Mariners front office? Trading Rhodes for Gaby Hernandez (small trade but a decent one), moving Morrow to the rotation, and now getting rid of Vidro.

    Can we trade for Griffey next?

  30. Mike Snow on August 5th, 2008 3:38 pm

    The M’s website has the official release on Vidro, Balentien has been called up to replace him on the roster.

  31. smatbte51 on August 5th, 2008 3:39 pm

    What has happened to the Mariners front office? Trading Rhodes for Gaby Hernandez (small trade but a decent one), moving Morrow to the rotation, and now getting rid of Vidro.

    Can we trade for Griffey next?

  32. scottiedawg on August 5th, 2008 3:41 pm

    Now perhaps a Balentien call-up, Ibanez to DH, Washburn jettison for something. If only we could DFA Ho-Arm.

  33. smatbte51 on August 5th, 2008 3:43 pm

    At least Cairo doesn’t start every can and hit 3rd.

  34. jephdood on August 5th, 2008 3:45 pm

    The obvious move would now be to take Raul’s glove when he’s not looking and hide it somewhere.. slide him into the DH spot. Put Balentien in LF.

    Lee? Riggles? Eh? C’mon.

  35. The Ancient Mariner on August 5th, 2008 4:01 pm

    Personally, I’m all for keeping Dickey in the rotation. It will no doubt be an up-and-down ride, as knuckleballers always are, but I think the odds are good that he has a long career as a pretty good starting pitcher. I doubt he ends up a Niekro or a Wilhelm, but I don’t see any reason he can’t match Tim Wakefield, and that’s a pretty good deal.

    As for Morrow, at least he’s evolved from the “succeed by throwing harder” approach he had last season; I think we’ve seen real growth out of him in his career so far. In the end, I think his time in the bullpen may turn out to have helped more than it hurt, so long as the FO sticks to their guns in moving him.

  36. Mike Honcho on August 5th, 2008 4:15 pm

    As for Morrow, at least he’s evolved from the “succeed by throwing harder” approach he had last season

    Actually, he is throwing harder this year…

  37. Gomez on August 5th, 2008 4:37 pm

    Well, Morrow’s velocity is up. That doesn’t necessarily mean he is throwing harder, per se. He is locating better and even mixing in other pitches. That in itself indicates that he is not throwing harder: he’s pitching more rather than rearing back and flinging it at the plate as hard as he can.

    As for whether he can get stretched out in a month… while RR-S has been able to stretch out quickly (hitting 101 pitches in Tacoma yesterday in only his 3rd start of the season), Morrow does have the handicap of not having started regularly since college (if we don’t include the 5 “starts” he made after getting drafted in 2006). It’s going to take him a lot longer to stretch out, get acclimated to facing entire lineups 3-4 times and not get bombed, handle the little adversities like getting squeezed by an ump or dealing with hitter-friendly conditions over 100-110 pitches, etc.

  38. jordan on August 5th, 2008 4:59 pm

    Any idea on when Morrow will start in AAA? I may go to the game if I know when it is.

  39. The Ancient Mariner on August 5th, 2008 5:03 pm

    Mike: my point wasn’t about his velocity, it was about his approach, as Gomez pointed out in more detail.

  40. dchappelle on August 5th, 2008 5:15 pm

    Dave – just curious, but it sounds like your view has changed somewhat from
    this article?

    Sure, it seems he now has better command, but probably still not a strength. He still doesn’t change speeds much, still absolutely and definitely has an outpitch, doesn’t have pitches that tail to both sides of the plate and probably doesn’t pitch unpredictably.

    I can’t really say I believe the idea that the M’s are going to keep him down long enough to really develop a changeup…

    Or am I (as usual) missing something obvious?

  41. scott19 on August 5th, 2008 5:16 pm

    Personally, I’m all for keeping Dickey in the rotation.

    Me, too…he’s been one of the brighter spots on the team this year. Not sure exactly what his contract status is, but might not at least a short-term (1-2 year) extension with a performance bonus or two be in order?

  42. AssumedName on August 5th, 2008 5:34 pm

    Okay, I know I should be thrilled about this and all, but does this mean the M’s aren’t planning on actually having save situations the rest of the year? Cuz right now, J.J. raises my blood pressure.

    Do me a favor, big guy…don’t walk the first guy you face.

  43. junglist215 on August 5th, 2008 6:11 pm

    Awesome news! M’s finally getting pointed in the right direction.

    41. Dickey spent the 2004 season with the Rangers. That should put him under club control for another 4 years.

  44. edgar for mayor on August 5th, 2008 7:52 pm

    Better late than Never? Eh, not the best saying for baseball, but I am sure glad they are making good decisions even though Morrow had to say about 30 times “Hey Seattle. Yeah you, this is stupid, get me the fuck out of this pen and into the rotation.”

  45. cdowley on August 5th, 2008 8:02 pm

    38 –

    Tomorrow is his first scheduled start, due to throw 35-40 pitches. I may try to see if I can swing tickets for a weekend start of his if he gets one…

  46. Madison Mariner on August 5th, 2008 9:44 pm

    I was a bit disappointed though to hear that the press release didn’t include Turbo and Cairo being DFA’d.

    Well, you’re going to be disappointed when you find out that Cairo wasn’t DFA’ed at all, seeing as how he just came into the game.

    (And personally, I have no qualms about keeping him as a bench guy for now, since he doesn’t have a high-priced 2009 option attached to his contract!) ;)

  47. TumwaterMike on August 6th, 2008 1:43 am

    I like Cairo on the bench. He plays all the infield positions, knows how to bunt and can steal a base. He really doesn’t have to hit for average if he’s coming off the bench. Just get hits at critical times, steal a base or lay down a bunt. What more can you ask of him.

    My starting roation next year (in this order) Felix, Bedard, Morrow, RRS and Feierabend or Silva (if he’s still with the team). Dickey is valuable as a long reliever, sometimes starter. Batista in the bull pen, if he’s still here. We really don’t need to tweak the pitching much.

    You have Putz, Green, Lowe, Dickey, Jimenez, maybe Batista and a combination of Corcoran, Wells and O’Flaherty (if he’s healthy) in the bull pen.

    We should spend the off-season working on the offense (and defense). Maybe trade Betancourt, trade Johjima (if we can), use Clement, Balentien, LaHair, Reed, Lopez, Ichiro and Beltre as our core of players. Bring up Hulett for the bench, get a shortstop that plays good defense and can take a pitch. I would really like Rauuuuuuuul back as the DH (probably our MVP this year). Get a Centerfielder (so that Reed can be a good 4th outfielder and bench player). Let the youngsters play and have fun next year.

    A second thought on Johjima, why not get some pictures of him in an indecent situation with a hooker and then threaten to tell his family if he doesn’t quit the team and return to Japan.

    Dave your a photographer right? Just a thought.

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