U.S. Cellular Field | 8:11 | Snell vs. Javier Vazquez | Box
Thankfully, the 2008 Pirates haven’t had too many games like this. Ian Snell walked six and gave up nine hits and seven runs in four innings. The Sox banged out 19 hits and scored 16 runs. Just not a pleasant game.
Javier Vazquez gave up five runs on just five hits in six innings.
Jason Bay was out with the flu. Xavier Nady missed another game with his bruised shoulder. When he returns, can we move Jason Michaels to first base until July when Adam LaRoche will heat up?
Javier Vazquez is the kind of pitcher that the Pirates could have used over the past 10 years. He is an innings eater. He is rarely stellar (career ERA+ is 106 and season best is 126). But, he stays healthy and keeps the team in the game. He has hit double digits in wins every year since 2000. He is on his way again this year with 6 wins and five losses. He strikes out a lot of hitters, with 1905 in his career in 2152-1/3 innings.
His last two outings have been underwhelming. He has given up nine runs in 11-1/3 innings of work. Three Pirates have seen him often in his career. Chris Gomez is 8-31. Jack Wilson has 7 hits in 23 at bats. Jason Michaels has a homer among his five career hits in 15 at bats off of Vazquez. The team as a whole is hitting .273 off of him.
Vazquez is 4-3 with a 4.76 ERA against the Pirates. He has just one appearance against them since 2005. That was June 17, 2007 and Vazquez got a no decision in a game the ChiSox lost.
As a dude who has seen his fair share of math, stats and engineering courses through the years, I’m trained well enough to know that two points don’t normally constitute a valid trend. Yet, that’s what I’m hopeful of as Ian Snell has given up just two earned runs in his last 11 innings over two starts. His ERA sits at 5.33 and his record is a measley 3-6.
This will be Snell’s second career tilt against the White Sox. He lost a start back in 2006 after giving up three runs in five innings. There is not a whole lot of experience against Snell for the South Siders. They are a collective 6-20 off him. Only Jermaine Dye (2-3) has more than one hit. Three of those six knocks are doubles.