Sunday, July 22, 2007

There's No Disturbin' J.D. Durbin

At least, that's what it reads on the bumper sticker on Phillie Phan's car after what the Phillies' newest mound phenom did in San Diego today.

A shutout?

That's highly unusual for a hurler who received his "total reject" label when he was dumped three times (by the Twins, Bosox and D'Backs) between the beginning of spring training and the first week of the regular season.

Compounding Phillie Phan's bewilderment is that he/she doesn't know if The Disturbin' J.D. Durbin pitchin' at The Cit is a baseball reincarnation of former Eagles' backup QB . . . "The Annoying Bobby Hoying."

Either way, The Disturbin' J.D. Durbin has done a bang-up job (sort of) ever since he arrived in Philly after that one-game stint for Arizona at Coors Field (two-thirds IP, 7 hits, 7 ER).

Durbin had a rocky outing in his Phillies debut (starting against the Mutts in that series which ended June, Durbin allowed 6 runs in 4 2/3, which -- get this -- put his Phillie ERA at 11.57, but lowered his overall season ERA from 94.50 to 21.94).

During three subsequent relief appearances, Phillie Phan watched as the ERA shrunk from 21.94 to 15.95 . . . to 14.00 . . . to 13.50 (that final half-run drop occurring after he walked three batters and allowed a run during one IP of mop-up duty in the 13-3 trouncing of St. Loo).

Then, Durbin got his first Phillie W and -- say it together -- "helped his own cause" by going 3 for 4 in that 15-3, act of heroism in La-La Land . . . an effort which lowered his ERA to 9.00.

Now, with his 5-hit, complete-game shutout vs. the Pods, well . . . the kid who, three games into the season, had an ERA a smidge under 100.00, has a (very) respectable 3.33 ERA with the Phils.

If he keeps this up, J.D. Durbin's going to have Phillie Phan believing that he's the second coming of 1995 All-Star Tyler Green.

Or, better yet . . . Garrett Stephenson.

Sure . . . it seems a little amusing, but it's important to bear in mind the numbers of the Phils' projected No. 1 and No. 2 starters (Brett Myers and Freddy Garcia) since the team came north from spring training:

Myers -- 3 starts, 15 1/3 IP, 15 hits, 9 walks, 5 HRs, an 0-2 record w/ an ERA of 9.39.
Garcia -- 11 starts, 58 IP, 74 hits, 19 walks, 12 HRs, a 1-5 record w/ an ERA of 5.90 -- abyssmal numbers for a pitcher who'd averaged a 15-9 W/L record per season for the first eight years of his career.

Right now, Freddy Garcia is the Latino Joe Cowley, like it or not.

And, right now, there's no tellin' who J.D. Durbin will no-hit next . . .

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