Drew Smyly has been nearly flawless for the Detroit Tigers during Spring Training, despite being in competition with Rick Porcello for the final spot in the rotation.
Smyly was just about perfect again on Thursday, going four strong innings, including a second inning where he stuck out the side. Through two weeks of Spring Training, Smyly has been more consistent and more impressive than the more experienced Porcello.
It’ll be frustrating to Smyly and to Tigers’ fans if Porcello continues to be less consistent through Spring Training, yet still makes the roster as the fifth starter. Porcello has more experience in the big leagues, but since his first season in 2009, when he was 20, he has floundered and hasn’t posted an ERA or a WHIP as low as he did in that season.
We’re talking about promoting a less consistent, less reliable, but more experience individual over the better performing candidate. Yeah, I get that that is the preferred practice in a union environment, and that the city of Detroit embraces that inefficiently frustrating model when it comes to manufacturing cars, however, it’s really not considered best practice when we’re talking about winning baseball games.
Smyly, we realize that this is frustrating, but just keep stringing together strong performances and people will take notice. Rest assured, you will be getting the call up if anything happens to any of the starters, or, possibly, when Porcello demonstrates to the managers and Tigers’ fans that he’s less reliable than a Canadian pacemaker.
Justin Gawel is a taco enthusiast who mainly writes for Rant Sports about the Detroit Tigers. Follow him on Google+ for all of his article postings.