Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Francisco Liriano

My grandmother put it best. She hated Livan Hernandez. She gets most of her baseball updates from the newspaper, and since the story broke during the day, I called her to inform her that the Twins had released the veteran right-hander. Without hesitation, she retorted, "Who'd they call up, Liriano? He's not any better!" Strictly by the numbers, he pitched pretty well in August and into September. Despite this, he looked like he could revert to the ineffective no-control pitcher we'd seen demoted in the spring. Following the Twins sweep of the White Sox, I wish I could have felt more confidence in the southpaw when he took the hill to open the series with the Royals. In the most important start of his career, Liriano proved my grandma right. He allowed 6 runs on 11 hits in less than 5 innings of work. For all his whining when he was in Rochester, I'd think he could handle the Royals with a playoff spot on the line.

He's still plenty young and has a good arm. But don't hold your breath waiting for him to be the next Johan Santana. I'd be content if he could roughly match Eric Milton.

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