Thursday, March 18, 2010

Tallet working his way to starting spot

Brian Tallet looks to have firmly established himself as a member of the Blue Jays rotation to start the season. In yesterday's outing against Baltimore, the lanky lefty made short work of the Orioles hitters, pitching four scoreless innings while striking out three. The question is, can Tallet secure his spot in the starting five for the duration of the campaign with plenty of young arms waiting for their chance?

When spring training started I must admit that I didn't want Tallet to be part of the rotation simply because I preferred the young pitchers learning more on the job. But with Dustin McGowan potentially starting the year on the disabled list and some uncertainty over Brandon Morrow, it only makes sense to have a veteran presence in the rotation, at least for now.

It's sometimes easy to forget that while Tallet struggled down the stretch last year, he had a pretty good first go round as a starter in the big leagues. Aside from four hideous starts, he pitched well enough to give Toronto a chance to win most every start. Putting in perspective what the former 2nd round pick did last year compared to his six other seasons in the bigs, he pitched nearly 100 innings more than any point during his career. No wonder he wasn't as solid down the stretch.

As the elder statesmen of the starting staff, he'll be tasked to not only shoulder a great deal of the load, but perhaps mentor the young hurlers now that Roy Halladay has left town. No pressure.

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