Show Something Soon, Ian
Ian Snell takes the hill for the M’s tonight. He needs to pitch well pretty soon, or the M’s are going to have to seriously re-evaluate whether they can go into the off-season planning on him taking one of the spots in their rotation next year. To be frank, Snell has been terrible since the M’s acquired him. Really, really bad. Here’s a comparison, for instance:
Snell as a Mariner: 40 1/3 IP, 38 H, 6 HR, 28 BB, 21 K, 6.13 FIP
Silva, pre-DL stint: 28 2/3 IP, 38 H, 5 HR, 9 BB, 10 K, 5.91 FIP
They haven’t been terrible in the same way, of course – Silva gave up a ton of hits, while Snell has just been walking everyone in sight, but their performances were roughly equivalent in terms of expected runs allowed. Neither of them have pitched like major league starters in Seattle this year.
When the M’s made the trade with Pittsburgh, they clearly did it with the intention of turning Snell’s career around and sliding him into their rotation for 2010 and beyond. He’s due $4.25 million in salary next year, so he’s going to get a lot of chances to earn his paycheck. But he can’t continue to pitch like he has since the trade and still be penciled into the starting five for 2010. The M’s simply can’t head into spring training next year with Snell expected to break camp in the rotation if he continues to pitch like he has in his first eight starts as a Mariner.
Tonight would be a great time for Snell to show that he can still throw strikes and miss bats. The stuff is good, but his command has been abysmal, and on the nights where he has thrown strikes, he’s been a pitch to contact guy. We have enough of those. We need Ian Snell to get a bunch of outs on his own without putting men on base every inning. We need him to pitch up to his abilities. And we need him to do it soon. Otherwise, he’ll have to be relegated into the already large group of guys who haven’t shown enough to be considered reliable starters for 2010.