Nationals Arm Race

"… the reason you win or lose is darn near always the same – pitching.” — Earl Weaver

Minor League Rotations Cycle #2: good/bad/mediocre

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Former Kansas standout Cameron Selik has been a find for the Hagerstown rotation in 2011.

Turn #2 through the minor league rotations has completed.  Here’s a look at our starters.

Here are the daily links from NationalsProspects, for reference below:


  • Taylor Jordan finally gets his turn in the Hagerstown rotation and pitches very effectively; 5IP 2H 0R 1BB 5K.  Not bad for a 5th starter in low-A.
  • Paul Demny put up a nice line in a ND on a cold night on 4/13: 5 2/3, 1ER, 3 hits and 1bb with 4ks.  The one earned run was inherited and allowed to score by Paul Demmin who relieved him in the 6th and allowed a game-tying homer.
  • Cameron Selik escaped a rough 1st inning and cruised for another 4, pitching 5 shut out innings for the 2nd outing in a row.  Final line: 5ip, 4hits, 2bbs, 0runs and 5ks.  Can’t beat a 0.00 era through 2 starts.
  • Ross Detwiler‘s 2nd start was still good, albeit not quite as dominant as his first.  Line: 6IP 6H 1ER 2BB 4K.  Most of the hits were singles, well scattered.
  • Erik Davis threw a shortened start (having been originally scheduled to go two days prior, only to have his game rained out).  Final line: 4IP 3H 0R 2BB 6K.  I’ll take 6ks in 4 innings in AA any day.
  • Another good start for Potomac Ace Denny Rosenbaum, though his bullpen conspired to blow his Win.  Line: 5IP 5H 1R 1ER 2BB 6K.


  • Jimmy Barthaimer‘s spot start in Harrisburg went badly: 2⅔ IP 5H 5ER 3BB 4K.  I like the K rate but 5 earned runs in 2 and 2/3s gave him the loss.
  • Brad Meyers couldn’t follow up his gem and was touched for 9 hits in 4 2/3 inning in a loss on 4/13.  Final line: 4 2/3, 9hits, 4er, 5ks, 0bbs.  On the bright side, no walks and 60 of 84 pitches for strikes.
  • Paul Applebee was hit hard in his Hagerstown spot start on 4/13: 4 2/3ip, 6hits, 5 runs, 2 walks and he gave up two gopher balls.   Oddly, the two homers were given up to the #8 hitter and the leadoff hitter in quick succession.
  • Matt Grace got shelled on 4/14; 4IP 11H 6R 6ER 1BB 1K 2HR.  Not an impressive follow up to his first start.
  • Garrett Mock continued to show why his retention is questioned by some observers.  He walked 7 of the 20 batters he faced and failed to get out of the 4th inning despite throwing 91 pitches (only 47 of which were for strikes).  He even threw in a balk to boot.  Final line on 4/15: 3⅔ IP 2H 3R 3ER 7BB 2K.  His frustration was evident; getting ejected in the 7th inning while sitting in the dugout.
  • Ryan Tatusko followed up a shaky first start with a downright awful one: 3⅔ IP 10H 7R 7ER 3BB 2K on friday.  10 hits and 3 walks meant that 13 of the 23 batters he faced reached base.  That’s really tough to do.
  • Christopher McKenzie went from a good first start to a shaky second start for Hagerstown.  Line on 4/15: 3⅓ IP 7H 5R 5ER 6BB 1K.  He’s averaging more than a walk an inning on the season and isn’t getting the strikeouts we saw last year.  He may be the starter to make way when Sammy Solis is ready to come off the DL.


  • Brad Peacock‘s 4/12 start line: 4⅔ IP 7H 2ER 1BB 3K.  Too many base-runners, though he managed to work around a lot of those runners to only allow the 2 runs.
  • Mitchell Clegg‘s outing in the nightcap on 4/13 was so so: 4ip, 4hits, 2er, 1 bb and 3ks.  He also uncorked 2 wild pitches, had a hit batsman and balked during his brief outing (both of which factored into his first earned run allowed).  It sounds like it could have been worse for Clegg, who got a ND for his troubles on the night.
  • Yuneski Maya‘s 2nd start was better than his first: 5⅔ IP 4H 2ER BB 5K and a no-decision.  Lets just hope he continues to settle down and improve.
  • Tom Milone took the loss on saturday 4/16 despite getting a quality start.  Line: 6IP 6H 3R 3ER 0BB 5K.   Two of the 6 hits were solo homers (oddly, to the #’s 6 and 8 hitters), otherwise this was a decent outing.

Relievers of Note and other Thoughts

  • Chris Manno‘s 4/12 line: 2IP 1H 0R 0BB 5K.  Wow!  The Manno-maniacs (is that the name of your fan club?) are ecstatic.  What a find this guy is looking like early in the 2011 season.  He threw another couple scoreless innings on 4/15 and he’s yet to give up a run in 2011.
  • Erik Arneson pitched 3 1/3 innings of scoreless long relief on 4/13.  It could be interesting to see if he pitches his way out of the spot-starter role in AA and returns to the rotation.
  • Cory VanAllen put in a nifty 3 inning stint to finish off a win for Erik Davis; 3ip 4ks and 2 hits (one homer).  He may not have succeeded as a starter, but he could provide LOOGY backup for the organization.
  • Hassan Pena had a nifty relief appearance on 4/15: 2ip with 5ks.  The converted starter is repeating AA this year and is looking to improve on a 4.29 era in 2010.


Eventually i’ll post the trends of the starters, but with half the system with just one start b/c of rainouts, we’ll wait til next time.

Summary: Our spot starters didn’t help out at all, and they’ll probably get another opportunity in this next rotation cycle because of all the rainouts.  Lots of starters took steps back their 2nd time through.   Detwiler continues to look sharp, but there’s no room for him at the MLB level with our starters throwing so effectively.  A good problem to have.

5⅔ IP 4H 2ER BB 5K,

Written by Todd Boss

April 17th, 2011 at 10:22 am

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