FanPost

Set the Rotation

We have few games left on our schedule, and we have to set it accordingly. We WANT to have Zito, Blanton and Haren face the Angels, and in lue of Harden missing the series, Kennedy since Saarloos has bad numbers vs the Angels. Here is our schedule:

Minnesota vs Oakland - ZITO (WIN)
Minnesota vs Oakland - BLANTON
Minnesota vs Oakland - KENNEDY
OFF DAY
Texas vs Oakland -
Texas vs Oakland -
Texas vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Oakland vs Seatle -
Oakland vs Seatle -
Oakland vs Seatle -

Those three Seatle games could be very important, but the most important ones are those four games vs the Angels. We can only pray that the Rangers and Devil Rays have their way with the Angels.

Only the Twins Series is mapped out for pitching probables. The Rotation currently stands as follows..

Zito
Blanton
Kennedy
Haren
Saarloos

That is how its set right now due to a variety of things. Now, for the #'s of each pitcher vs each team.

Zito:
vs Texas - 15IP, 3.00 ERA, .137BAA
vs Anahiem - 30IP, 1.50 ERA, .149BAA
vs Seatle - 27.1IP, 2.63 ERA, .235BAA

Blanton:
vs Minnesota - 7IP, 1.29ERA, .091BAA
vs Texas - 23IP, 5.09ERA, .267BAA
vs Anahiem - 22IP, 2.05ERA, .225BAA
vs Seatle - 19IP, 3.79ERA, .254BAA

Kennedy:
vs Minnesota - N/A
vs Texas - 13.1IP, 6.08ERA, 3.16BAA
vs Anahiem - 7IP, 5.14ERA, .310BAA
vs Seatle - 6.1IP, 2.84ERA, .240BAA

Haren:
vs Texas - 21.1IP, 6.75ERA, .265BAA
vs Anahiem - 5.2IP, 13.50ERA, .429BAA
vs Seatle - 24.2IP, 4.18ERA, .274BAA

Saarloos:
vs Texas - 11.2IP, 6.75ERA, .244BAA
vs Anahiem - 16IP, 7.31ERA, .323BAA
vs Seatle - 9IP, 0.00ERA, .133BAA

There are your numbers. There is your schedule. Using that Day off, you want to make the best matchups you can. So lets examine this and create a schedule worthy of the A's.

The first two days are already good matchups.

For the Texas series, we have an off day before, which gives us a bit of leway to either skip someone, or go ahead. By far our best pitcher vs Texas is Zito, but if you ignore the inflated ERA totals, and look at the Batting Average Against, it gives you Saarloos, Haren and Blanton being good guys to go for those days. But we must be weary of the Angels series. Lets plug some guys in.

Minnesota vs Oakland - ZITO (WIN)
Minnesota vs Oakland - BLANTON
Minnesota vs Oakland - KENNEDY
OFF DAY
Texas vs Oakland - Haren
Texas vs Oakland - Zito
Texas vs Oakland - Saarloos
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Anahiem vs Oakland -
Oakland vs Seatle -
Oakland vs Seatle -
Oakland vs Seatle -

There, we have Zito pitching on 5 Day Rest as normal, Haren is pitching in his normal spot, and Saarloos is in there instead of Blanton, to allow Blanton to pitch vs the Angels.

Now lets look at the Angels series. We kept Zito back a day so that he could pitch in the Angels series instead of missing it. So lets plug him in there. Blanton is now on line to pitch the first game of the Angels series, instead of the Rangers series. After Blanton in the rotation comes Kennedy then Haren. We want Haren vs the Angels, his bad numbers are small sample size. Kennedy has a slightly larger sample size, and we will pencil him in, but leave a chance for Harden.

Minnesota vs Oakland - ZITO (WIN)
Minnesota vs Oakland - BLANTON
Minnesota vs Oakland - KENNEDY
OFF DAY
Texas vs Oakland - Haren
Texas vs Oakland - Zito
Texas vs Oakland - Saarloos
Anahiem vs Oakland - Blanton
Anahiem vs Oakland - Haren (Harden?)
Anahiem vs Oakland - Kennedy (Harden?)
Anahiem vs Oakland - Zito
Oakland vs Seatle -
Oakland vs Seatle -
Oakland vs Seatle -

For the Final 3 Games vs Seatle, we have to simply pick the guys who do good vs Seatle, of the guys we have that do good vs Seatle. We can't use Zito on short notice. We will need Zito to come back on 4 days rest to pitch a 1-Game-Playoff if needed. Lets pencil in that final series.

Minnesota vs Oakland - ZITO (WIN)
Minnesota vs Oakland - BLANTON
Minnesota vs Oakland - KENNEDY
OFF DAY
Texas vs Oakland - Haren
Texas vs Oakland - Zito
Texas vs Oakland - Saarloos
Anahiem vs Oakland - Blanton
Anahiem vs Oakland - Haren
Anahiem vs Oakland - Kennedy (Harden?)
Anahiem vs Oakland - Zito
Oakland vs Seatle - Saarloos
Oakland vs Seatle - Blanton
Oakland vs Seatle - Kennedy (Harden?)

And there we have it. That should be the best rotation we can come up with. Not a lot is done except to have Zito pitch on 5 Days Rest instead of 5 Games, and have Saarloos get bumped up a day in order to miss the Angels, who crush him, and face the Rangers who have a high ERA on him, but low BAA, and the Mariners, who he is good vs. Kennedy will make a few more starts, and it will be decided if we can use Harden for a few games. Harden could indeed (if in the unlikely event he is able to pitch) be used in the Bullpen to build up some stregnth, and the two "rehab" starts (if he could make them) would be used to set him up to pitch in the playoffs, likely as the Third Starter.

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