In 2011, San Francisco Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong finally figured it out and put it all together to become an All-Star. In 2012, his earned run average went up a tick, but he was still a very effective pitcher and collected 14 wins.
Unfortunately for Vogelsong, 2013 has been nothing like the previous two seasons as he has struggled with an ERA over 7.00.
On Thursday, Vogelsong will take the mound against the Atlanta Braves and he desperately needs a solid outing. In his last two appearances, he has allowed 12 earned runs combined in 9.2 innings. He has given up at least one home run in each of his last five starts.
The time is now for Vogelsong to prove that he should keep his spot in the rotation. The 35-year-old right-hander needs to show the team he still can get the job done. The Giants are hoping to win the National League West and can’t wait around for Vogelsong to find his stuff.
As nice as the last two seasons have been, those are in the past and baseball is a ‘what have you done for me lately’ kind of game.
If he bombs again on Thursday, he may need to be moved to the pen and the Giants can call up a guy like Shane Loux from Triple-A Fresno for a start or two. I don’t think Vogelsong in the pen is a long term solution, but it may be good to help him figure out what is mechanically wrong with him. A short term setback may bring long term gains.