Friday, April 21, 2006

"...And pitching for the Crimson, Number 8, Lance Salsgiver..."

As much as some have salivated over this propect over the years, especially given his great high school career in Michigan, one can still ponder: why now?
The Crimson, meanwhile, may have a few tricks up its sleeve. Salsgiver, usually a starting outfielder, could potentially start his first game of the season on the mound this weekend, most likely in one of Sunday’s games. Salsgiver pitched two innings of one-hit relief against Northeastern in the first round of the Beanpot Tournament, and his teammates express complete confidence in his starting abilities.

“Having Lance start is one of the things the coaches talked about as an option,” Brown said. He’s phenomonenally talented in outfield and on the mound, and we want to maximize his ability. He could start; the coaches may or may not decide to do it. If he does, he’s very capable, and if not, we’ve got a lot of other great guys lined up. Lance is a competitor and senior—he will throw until his arm falls off. He’s been very effective this year in relief.”
The article says maybe Sunday. That would suggest that we're going Haviland and Cole Saturday as usual (and correctly). Javy Castellanos is in the midst of his best stretch of pitching at Harvard, and I can't imagine why you wouldn't start him. So are we saying that he's getting the nod over Brunnig in the fourth game?
For those of you who forgot, here's what happened in Brunnig's last start:

Brunnig (W)7.041152100

Then he winds up in emergency relief last week, and now it seems like he may have fallen out of the rotation? Even though Cornell jumped on him the week before the Columbia start, and even though Columbia straight-up bad, I was still surprised reading this that a start like that doesn't keep Brunnig in the rotation--especially since Salsgiver's got one career collegiate start to his name, also against Brown and not a full start in any real sense.

Here's my theory.
Sunday: Periods of showers, mainly after noon. High near 49. Breezy, with a east wind between 16 and 21 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.
Walsh wants five starters at the ready given the reasonable likelihood that a game gets interrupted and the series takes until Monday to finish. Wouldn't be the first time. And he probably feels more comfortable taking his chances with Brunnig/Salsgiver at the back-end at this point than with Unger, Watson, Dukovich, Bruton et al. I'm guessing we wouldn't be hearing talk of Lance starting if the weather forecast were different.

As with everything else, I will likely be wrong. Salsgiver probably just threw a tremendous bullpen this week or something.

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