“Jarrod Washburn is the epitome of a bad free-agent target.”
Aaron Gleeman, December 2, 2009
You may wonder why Aaron has been a bit quiet this week. I’m no good at keeping secrets, so I may as well just come out with it: Aaron is currently undergoing intense psychiatric counseling following multiple suicide attempts brought on by the Twins doing things like making offers to Jarrod Washburn instead of getting in on Adrian Beltre or a serviceable second baseman who may actually help them win the Central in 2010. But hey, if you have the opportunity to pay $7 million or so to a guy like Washburn, you simply can’t pass up that deal.
As Aaron noted last month, Washburn went 1-3 with a 7.33 ERA in eight starts following the trade to the Tigers,
allowing 35 runs in 43 innings before missing the final three weeks
with a knee injury that required offseason surgery. He’s a smoke and mirrors pitcher who benefited from a big ballpark and an outrageously good set of outfielders in Seattle the first part of last year. Without those things, he was utterly exposed.
The Tigers trading for him last year did not help them win the division. The Twins signing him this year, however, may allow Detroit to do just that.
Nationals starter Max Scherzer bunted a ball into his face during batting practice on Tuesday, breaking his nose in the process. He ended up with a gnarly looking shiner around his right eye, making him appear a bit like Terminator. Scherzer still took the ball to start the second game of Wednesday night’s doubleheader against the Phillies.
Despite the injury, Scherzer was incredibly effective, limiting the Phillies to four hits and two walks across seven shutout innings, striking out 10 batters in the process. He might even have had some extra adrenaline going, as he averaged 96.2 MPH on his fastball, his highest average fastball velocity in a game since September 2012, per MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. The Nationals provided Scherzer with just one run of support, coming on a Brian Dozier solo home run off of Jake Arrieta in the second inning, but it was enough.
Wander Suero worked a scoreless top of the eighth with a pair of strikeouts. Victor Robles added a solo homer off of Pat Neshek in the bottom half. Closer Sean Doolittle took over in the ninth, working a 1-2-3 frame to give the Nats their 2-0 victory.
Over his last six starts, Scherzer now has a 0.88 ERA with a 59/8 K/BB ratio across 41 innings. He has gone six innings, struck out at least nine batters, and held the opposition to two or fewer runs in each of those six starts.