I didn't really know what to write about in this space until I remembered that Jonathan Pettibone is starting tonight for the first time in the major leagues -- that's pretty great! As I've seen noted in a couple of places, this debut is somewhat auspicious, insofar as it's the first time we're seeing any of the "Baby Aces" of yore -- Jarred Cosart (now of the Astros), Brody Colvin, Trevor May (now of the Twins), and Jonathan Pettibone, if I'm remembering correctly. How quickly the worm turns, though: Colvin, and to a lesser extent Cosart and May, have seen the shine come off of their previously lofty prospect statuses. TINSTAAPP, friends.
Even Pettibone is a troubling sort of prospect, tabbed with a low strikeout rate and the unenviable "crafty" label that only Greg Maddux made look good. He's the appetizer prior to the main course of Adam Morgan and Ethan Martin here in Philadelphia, and the fear is that he'll prove to be a fairly unappetizing opener. That said, Pettibone has maintained his control (the last 50 or so innings notwithstanding), and he's been exceptional at limiting the longball. He could be the team's new Vance Worley!
And that's kind of what prospects, particularly pitching prospects, are or seem to be most of the time: damn, dirty teases. Flash the ace stuff in single-A, and come up the majors as Kyle "Voodoo" Kendrick. But Kendrick's valuable, as we've discussed in these very pages, and Worley helped net us Ben Revere, who will probably hit someday and is super likeable as we speak. Does this mean that RAJ has been right the whole time?
Nah. At least, that's what my gut says. While he's no Zack Wheeler or Gerrit Cole, Pettibone's debut is exciting in its own right. I can dream that he'll mature into a cost-controlled 3-4 pitcher, and I enjoy that kind of wish-casting very much. I'm going to guess all of you do too. At the very least, we can wish ill luck on that ostrich of a man, AJ Burnett. Let's enjoy it for now. Talk about the game below and include your prediction for Pettibone's first start. Here's mine: 6 innings, 7 strikeouts, 2 walks, 1ER, WIN.
4 game series vs Pirates @ Citizens Bank Park
|Tue 04/23||7:05 PM EDT|
|Wed 04/24||7:05 PM EDT|
|Thu 04/25||1:05 PM EDT|
#44 / Pitcher / Philadelphia Phillies
Jul 19, 1990
#34 / Pitcher / Pittsburgh Pirates
Jan 03, 1977