Last year Rob Dibble got canned from MASN after he said that Stephen Strasburg should have “sucked it up” and pitched despite having an elbow injury that went on to require Tommy John surgery. After he said it — but before he got fired — he apologized and said that his comments were “inappropriate and disrespectful.” Based on an interview he gave yesterday, however, he didn’t actually believe that:
“And it had nothing to do with the game he got hurt in Philly. He had a sold-out game against the Braves, and the people I worked with at MASN were excellent, we followed his workout regimen — which was fantastic. His warm-up was fantastic. He didn’t do any of that the day that he basically walked away from that Braves start, which was sold-out. And all the money that the Nationals were making per start on Strasburg was well over seven figures. So to me, you know what kid, you’ve got to suck it up.”
Bonus: he says he didn’t get fired because he’s still getting paid by MASN (note to Dibble: just because your contract got bought out doesn’t mean you weren’t fired) and he says that the real reason he got, um, not-fired was because Stephen Strasburg’s dad sent an email to the Lerners after Dibble’s comments.
One wonders if Dibble should just be quiet about all of this. Because if he persists, someone with the Nationals is going to feel obligated to go on record with the truth: that the Strasburg stuff was merely the final straw and that Dibble’s comical incompetence as a color man would have gotten him not-fired eventually.
Diamondbacks pitcher Shelby Miller left Sunday’s start against the Dodgers after four-plus innings due to tightness in his right forearm, the team announced. He’ll be reevaluated tomorrow. Needless to say, though, a forearm injury is very concerning. In his four innings, Miller gave up three runs on four hits and five walks with three strikeouts, raising his ERA to 4.09.
Miller, 26, has had a nightmare of a time since joining the Diamondbacks in December 2015. Last year, he made 20 starts and posted a 6.15 ERA. He suffered a finger injury suffered from scraping his hand on the pitcher’s mound with his follow-through, and he was also demoted to Triple-A during the summer as well.
Pirates starter Ivan Nova has been outstanding in his first three starts of the 2017 season. He yielded only five earned runs in 20 innings for a tidy 2.25 ERA. But even more impressively, Nova didn’t issue a walk in any of those starts.
That changed on Sunday afternoon against the Yankees, but in a most peculiar way. Nova had struck out the side in the first inning, notched a 1-2-3 frame in the second, and got two quick ground outs to begin the third inning, bringing up Yankees pitcher Jordan Montgomery for his first major league at-bat. Montgomery never batted in the minor leagues, either, so Sunday’s AB against Nova was his first since his senior year of high school in 2011. Montgomery took the first two pitches for balls, then a called strike, a ball, and another called strike to even the count. Nova came in with his sixth consecutive fastball but it missed low, walking the Yankees’ pitcher for his first free pass of the 2017 season.
Nova got out of the inning without any further issue. He wound up going seven innings, giving up a lone run on four hits and a walk with seven strikeouts, lowering his ERA to an even 2.00.