Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Chad Gaudin Has to Gau...

Hooray bad puns. But seriously, let's cut to the chase, Chad Gaudin has been terrible this season. When the Nats acquired Gaudin in the offseason, there was some thought he might even get the 5th starting rotation spot. After an average spring, Gaudin was given the the de facto long reliever role, as he was a starter as recently as 2009 with the Yankees. But his need in that role diminished as all Nationals starters have gone at least 5 innings in every game this season. Instead, he was placed in numerous mop up roles and non-clutch situations.

In those appearances, though, he's given up 10 runs (6 earned) in just 8.1 innings this season. Of all current Nationals relievers, he has the highest BB/9 (walks per 9 innings) at 8.6. No one should be surprised about that, especially if they saw him pitch against the Pirates on Monday night at PNC Park. He threw behind two different right-handed batters in just 2/3 of an inning. The only person on the entire 25-man roster that has a higher ERA than Gaudin (6.48) is the rookie Brian Broderick (7.36).

As Mac wrote about yesterday in The Bullpen Issue, the Nats bullpen has struggled mightily this season, largely due to a big changeover in "the other guys." Who are "the other guys?" People not named Storen, Burnett, and Clippard, of course. Gaudin, however, is at the center of the issue. Who reads this blog, despite his early season numbers, and wouldn't rather see Collin Balester on the 25-man roster than Chad Gaudin? I don't think many, but tell me if I'm wrong.

We here at the blog hope that Henry Rodriguez is ready to appear in the bigs soon, because who couldn't use a high-90s throwing reliever? Rizzo might also have to use some of that free agent money early in the season to get another reliever, otherwise the bullpen stars of Clipp, Stor, and Burn are going to get used into oblivion in games where the Nats are competitive. It's unfair to give Riggleman a bullpen of 7 guys when he only truly feels comfortable using 3 of them in close games. And the first one to go has to be Chad Gaudin.


  1. Henry Rodriguez pitched 2 sterling extra innings 11th and 12th last night. He's ready. He may be on his way today.

  2. Here's hoping, Anon. They've got to make a decision before the end of the month, so it's gotta happen this week.

  3. I definitely vote for Ballester - not sure about Coffey, we'll see. How is Detweiler doing? It's way past time to tweak the mid-game relief corps. LOVE the pun! Oh -- and I really, really, miss Ryan Zimmerman. Whether we win or lose, he is just exciting to watch.

  4. We've got a Detwiler post going up tomorrow morning! Stay tuned, macmom!

  5. It should be noted that Rodriguez has allowed just 1 ER in 12.1 IP of rehab work this year. In addition to a solid ERA he has 16 strikeouts to just 6 walks. Good sign, considering he had zippy control in Spring Training.