Tony Cingrani is in the midst of an odd streak

6 Comments

Reds starter Tony Cingrani allowed two runs over 6 1/3 innings today in what was an otherwise boring game (aside from that odd double play in the second inning). Cingrani, though, only allowed five hits, continuing a trend in which he hasn’t allowed more than five hits in any of his 21 career starts. According to Sean Lahman, of database fame, that hasn’t been done in 100 years.

Cingrani, 24, has gone at least five innings in 16 of his 21 starts, so the lack of offense isn’t for a dearth of opportunities. The lefty has enjoyed plenty of success early in his career despite using his fastball for a higher percentage of his pitches than anyone else in baseball except for Bartolo Colon since the start of the 2013 season (min. 100 innings). Over 127 innings, Cingrani has a 2.83 ERA and 149 strikeouts.

Dustin Pedroia going back on injured list

Getty Images
4 Comments

Welp, that didn’t last long. Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia is going back on the injured list with more knee issues. If it matters the Sox say it’s not a big deal and they expect him back sooner rather than later, but they also said that his post-2017 knee surgery was just a “cleanup” at first and that basically cost him a year. So.

Pedroia has played in six games and is 2-for-20 with a walk.

I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say that Pedroia’s career may be nearing an end. Sure, he’s under contract for two more years after this season, but he’s also in a unfortunate spiral that so many players experience in their mid-to-late 30s.

Running a website like this makes it all the clearer, actually. When you search a player’s name in our CMS, you get every post in which he appears in reverse chronological order. Just about every long-tenured player ends with about six posts in which he is alternately placed on and activated from the disabled/injured list. Then an offseason link to a big feature in which he’s written about as being “at a crossroads” followed by something vague about “resuming baseball activities” and then, inevitably, the retirement announcement. I can’t count the number of guys whose careers I can tick off in that way by browsing the guts of this site.

I hope that’s not the case for Pedroia. I hope that there’s a “Pedroia wins Comeback Player of the Year” post in the future. Or at the very least a silly “Miller’s Crossing” reference in an “And that Happened” in which I say “the old man’s still an artist with the Thompson” after he peppers the ball around in some 3-for-4, two-double game. I want that stuff to happen.

It’s just that, if you watch this game long enough, you realize how unlikely that is once a player starts to break down.