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Trachsel is the Fifth Starter

Mike SteffanosWednesday, April 12, 2006
By Mike Steffanos

I remembered to turn on WFAN at 5 for the Willie Randolph report. After the usual sarcastic introduction from the pompous Francesa, his partner began the weekly grilling process. There was some interesting back and forth over such things as Willie choosing to use Wagner yesterday, Beltran not wanting to take the curtain call after his home run and whether Willie thought Anderson Hernandez would hit enough to keep the second base job.

Then, when Chris Russo demanded to know why Victor Zambrano was starting over Steve Trachsel tomorrow, Willie told him that Trachsel was the fifth starter. Russo gets all worked up over Zambrano being ahead of Trachsel, and Willie more or less tells him that he knows the team better than Russo, and to f**k off. Good stuff for Willie, last year he seemed a little intimidated by these guys, now he more or less tells them to kiss his ass.

We can debate whether Zambrano should be ahead of Trachsel -- I have no problem with it, but I know some will. What was far more interesting to me, however -- and MATMD both missed it -- is the faith shown in Brian Bannister by saying Trachsel is the fifth starter. For a kid that was supposed to be in Triple-A this year, and doesn't have dominating stuff, I found this very interesting. Too bad the two bozos were more interested in attacking Zambrano rather than asking this important question.

Randolph Interview on WFAN

Comments (4)

Actually that makes Bannister the 3rd starter.

Alot is made of Bannister's 'stuff'how can his stuff be worse than trachsel's. bannister has 4+ pitches with command. His curve and splitter/cutter is his best pitch, and actually given the tempo of the league now a 95MPH FB is NOTHING...a cutter/splitter is THE pitch du jour and it sets up better with a curve. Ask Seo whose FB could not always set up his cutter. Or benson whose shoulder issues took away command of his curve, especially late in the season. Traxx has NO appreciable velocity and lives of his off speed stuff. Pedro likewise does not need his ++++FB and lives heavily off the off speed stuff. Traxx, and Glavine die when they leave pitches up and out over the plate.

so again why not Bannister. I left VZ out because he likely has the best stuff on the staff, but least control. with health he easily is the #2 pitcher with more upside than Benson. He compares well with Carlos Zambrano. Once Jorge is straightened out or traded, (or padilla comes back) then Heilman CAN step into the rotation.

as we blog Ahern hits into a DP.
a. Where is Woody.
b. Same line up. I'd like to see Reyes,beltran, wright,delgado, Loduca,Floyd,Nady or delgado flipped with wright in the 3-4 slots to spice up the order. Note the effect Delgado has on this line up.

I'm not even speculating on who's 3 and who's 4 -- I just think it's an outstanding vote of confidence for the kid. When he's got that curveball working he does have better stuff than Trachsel, no doubt. I'm surprised that he's ahead of Trachsel, but I am shocked that they acknowledge this so early in the year. I agree with you, I think it's great.

Did you see the turn AH made on that double play? If he could hit .250, maybe even .240, he can keep that starting job.


1. kaz will be released traded sold by june, unless he can play off the bench.
2. On ahern great DP but as Metro-mike points out. a slugging %=hitting% wont keep u in the league. Yes that was a game saver but not a 'david wright 'league play, in fact that was near routine. Nonetheless, after 2 yrs of Kaz it was exciting. If kepp does not come up, I can see Jose vidro's shadow offer 2nd base.
3. Get excited but up the road, look at how the Bronx guys are winning games and then ask 'do we have enuff'...WE CANNOT AFFORD A-hern to be in that spot this Aug. Great he does not hurt us (KAZ DOES) but we need a +++ at 2B. We need a tough LHP and a 2nd baseman. The guy we could have gotten (Luis Castillo) is in Minn. But there are others.
4. I think the nats are a WC contender and alot better and deeper than given credit for. Livian, armas, Patterson, Cordero, are legit and they are deep. I suspect the Atl braves will fall farther than anyone expected this yr.

Routine??? You're a tough man to impress.

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