Pitchers and catchers are days away from reporting to their spring training homes and all thirty teams have question marks regarding their rotations. When will the Nationals call up Stephen Strasburg? Is Joba or Hughes the Yankees fifth starter? How many games will Kyle Farnsworth win as a starter for the Royals? No, I wasn’t making a joke. News out of Kansas City yesterday said Farnsworth will come into camp competing for a rotation spot.
The old adage “you can never have too much pitching” rings true every MLB marathon. However, to quote Dr. Seuss,“The 3 best words that best describe you(Kyle Farnsworth), are as follows, and I quote Stink, Stank, Stunk”.
I understand the depth in the Royals rotation has lead management to this decision, but I would rather see rookies get those starts to mature and learn their craft at the MLB level. The Royals are far away from competing and need to groom youngsters for their rotation, not try to transform a journeyman. If Mr. Grinch grabs a spot, every fifth day will be batting practice in the American League.
Farnsworth has a solid fastball and slider when they are working, but as we have seen over the years, those effective pitches are few and far between. He has always been a very hittable relief pitcher and is MIA in big games. In 1999, during his rookie campaign with the Cubs, he started 21 games with an ERA of 5.05, 5-9 record and yielded 28 bombs. His career ERA is 4.47 while making stops with the Cubs, Yankees, Tigers, Royals and Braves.
The Royals have not spent money on starting pitchers since landing Gil Meche. If Farnsworth takes the ball every fifth day, KC will find themselves 21.5 games out of the Central again this season. From a fantasy baseball standpoint, if Farnsworth does manage to secure a rotation spot , I wouldn’t touch him with a 39 and a half foot pole–I just couldn’t resist.
Jay Ferraro is the Executive Producer of Baseball Digest LIVE and Gotham Baseball LIVE. He is also a columnist for Baseball Digest ,Baseballdigest.com, and Gothambaseball.com. You can reach him at Jay_Ferraro@Juno.com , follow him on Twitter here and add him on Facebook here.