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Misch Givings

Before the season started, I considered Kevin Correia and Pat Misch to be interchangeable. Correia had the inside track on the fifth-starter’s job, and that was just swell, but Misch didn’t seem like a bad alternative.

Title Card: Present Day

Scorched earth. Flames ten feet high. Corpses. A hopelessly barren landscape.


Giants Fan #1

Line drives did this.


Giants Fan #2

They warned us about Zito…
but it was Misch…dammit…
it was Misch the whole time.


Giants Fan #2 sinks to his knees and sobs.

Maybe I’m understating the point, but you get the idea. Misch has been abysmal. He just gave up another home run, even though all he was doing was pouring a bowl of Honey Smacks. There goes another one. It was a fastball right over the heart of the plate. I think the frog hit it.

What kills me is that Misch is allowing fewer baserunners than he was in 2007, and his strikeout rate has gone up. His K/BB rate is just fine for a fifth starter, and that’s a cautious statement. No, the problem is that a fifth of the hits he has given up have been home runs. This is odd, as his line-drive percentage is actually down from last year. Maybe we’re just running into sample size shenanigans. Misch has had a couple of starts with a catawampus inning sandwiched by effective innings, and maybe those catawampus innings are just clouding our judgment. Catawampus.

It’s mostly a moot point with Kevin Correia about to return. But when I look at Misch’s stats in relief last year (AAA – 66 innings, 74 strikeouts, 19 walks, 2.30 ERA), I wonder if his future isn’t in the bullpen. There’s no rush to find out – the rotation is full, and Jack Taschner and Alex Hinshaw have been just swell from the left side so far – but maybe Misch is being shoehorned into a role just because he has three or four pitches.

If you find my point, please return it (possible reward!), but in the meantime, consider this a moment to mull the myriad of Misch measures. Open Future of Misch Thread. I say he finishes the year in Fresno as a starter, but if the results are underwhelming, he begins 2009 in middle relief.