Rick Porcello is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get.
Today, the Detroit Tigers received caramels as Porcello pitched his first complete game in a 9-1 blowout of the Chicago White Sox. Porcello, who has always found more success against the White Sox than he has against virtually any other baseball team for some reason, delivered another gem against them and gave the Tigers a giant win to put them 5.5 games ahead in the division after the Cleveland Indians fell earlier.
Having Porcello pitch well is always a big deal for the Tigers because it eliminates a weak link in the strongest rotation in baseball. When he is pitching well, he could easily fill the role that Doug Fister brings as a second/third-best starter; but when things go south, you wonder why he is allowed to be within 50 feet of a baseball mound.
Porcello picked a great day to have arguably one of his best starts of his career, as the Tigers were desperately looking for something positive after a week of being hammered on this current road trip. Now this start gives the Tigers a second wind to hopefully finally separate themselves enough to kick their feet up and wait for the first round of the playoffs.
It’s still hard to see Porcello making the playoff rotation given the front four, but he is still going to be a huge part of this team come October in the bullpen. If he is going well, he adds a lot to this team.
While his ups and downs will frustrate any fan, the upside is so good that the Tigers are willing to risk it. Tonight, Porcello proved to be worth the risk.