Friday, June 22, 2007

Dealing With Losers (Phils Win, 6-0)

The mighty Zenmaster, Tony LaLoser, probably told Anthony Reyes that just because he was the losing pitcher against the Phillies tonight, that doesn't mean that Anthony Reyes is loser.
Yet, there were some interesting sidebars to tonight's 6-0 Phils win in St. Loo ... an outcome which dropped Reyes' record to 0-9.
With the loss, Reyes is the first Cardinal pitcher to begin a season 0-9 since Danny Jackson in 1995.
Combine with the sidebar to Reyes' previous decision -- when he fell to 0-8, thus becoming the first pitcher since Curt Schilling in '94 to go 0-7 the season after registering a win in the World Series.

In case it's not abundantly clear:
"Yes" ... Reyes' gem against the Tigers in last year's Fall Classic was a complete fluke (so, let's completely disspell the "he's better than his record indicates" tagline when he's taking the mound in the World Series and his season won-loss record is 5-8 and his ERA is hovering around 6.00 ... he really does SUCK).

However, this is less about a stiff named Anthony Reyes than it is about how a stiff named Anthony Reyes made us remember Schill in the mid '90s.

When Schill started 0-7 in '94, a lot of us wondered what his deal was. He'd been the middle-reliever-turned-starter in '92 and was lights out (14-11 / 2.35) for a last-place team before his interesting personal odyssey in '93 (8-1 /3.03 during the first two months ... 0-5 / 11.76 in five starts during the 3-week span which ended June and began July ... 5-1 in his final six starts of the season ... then, two insanely-pitched games against the Bravos in the NLCS after he'd pitched like crap in four starts against The A-T-L during the regular season ... ).

Y'see, it wasn't just the 0-7 to begin the strike-shortened season of '94.
He wasn't anything special in '95 or '96 either.
Obviously, he proved his worth as an All-Star in '97, '98, '99 and '01 before he was dealt away.

Yet, this isn't about the guy who was sturdy as a Phillie and a Hall of Famer after he left or about trying to explain how Danny Jackson went from 14-6 in '94 (when he probably should have won the Cy Young Award) to 0-9 to begin '95 after the Phils had dealt him to St. Loo for the extremely-dreamboatish Gregg Jefferies.

And, it's not about Jackson being the starting pitcher for the Cards on July 22, 1995 when the Phils were trying to notch Milestone Loss No. 9,000 or about how Jackson, pitching for an organization which had axed Joe Torre as manager two months earlier, was attempting to pin Loss No. 9,000 on the Phils as he was backed by an infield of John Mabry (1B), Jose Oquendo (2B), Tripp Cromer (SS) and Darnell Coles (3B).

Well, actually ... maybe it is.
Life has a weird way of going full circle.
We can ask the ageless Jamie Moyer about that, given the fact that he was a 28-year-old sack-o'-crap who was 0-5 / 5.41 for St. Loo when the Redbirds cut him loose in '91.
Moyer didn't pitch in the bigs in '92 and then he had three mediocre seasons ('93-'95) in Baltimore.

Then, Jamie Moyer had seven seasons ('97-'03) in Seattle which sorta defied explanation.
He averaged a 16-7 record and won 20 games twice (in '01 and '03) .
By comparison, The Greatest Southpaw Ever Invented (Barry Zito) averaged a W-L record of 15-9 during the 6-year window ('01-'06) in the "prime" of his overrated career.
Actually, during the past four seasons, Zito has an average W-L mark of 13-11, so, watch out, world ... he might go ballistic and put up one of those legendary 14-12 seasons if we're not careful.

Newsflash: Barry Zito frickin' sucks.

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