Check out Looper's stat lines by month:
So, it looks like we've found the exact level of Braden's performance in the rotation: 5.40ish ERA ball, going five, maybe six innings into a game. I hear that Mulder has actually found the 2003 speed on his fastball again. It seems like me that Loop would be more effective out of the bullpen and that Mulder, if he continues to have rehab starts as encouraging as his most recent one at Palm Beach would be a better option in the rotation that Looper really is right now.
Aside from that, Joe Buck was right in pointing out that the Marlins are truly a free swinging club. This should at least help Loop out as far as the stamina issue is concerned. What it doesn't help us with is the fact that the Marlins are fifth in the majors in home runs despite playing in a pitchers' park, while Loop has given up 13 HR in 133.67 innings. Obviously, the key to this game for him is to keep the ball in the park.
Scott Olsen has been struggling all season, giving up 10.4 hits per nine innings to go with that 5.25 ERA and his 1.63 WHIP. Not to be topped by Looper, Olsen has given up nineteen home runs in 145.67 innings pitched. So, he's vulnerable to home run power hitters, and he's vulnerable to being singled to death. The Cardinals will either go up there and pick him to pieces, or he will simply start racking up strikeouts. Let's just see if we can get some guys on base for Albert tonight. That's really all that I ask. We're currently sitting two games below .500. Wouldn't it be nice to be talking about a winning ballclub again?
Here are the lineups:
|Eck, SS||H. Ramirez, SS|
|Soguchi, CF||Uggla, 2B|
|Albert, 1B||HR Trot Cabrera, 3B|
|Juan, RF||Willingham, LF|
|Rolen, 3B||Jacobs, 1B|
|LUD, LF||Olivo, C|
|Yadi C||Hermida, RF|
|Loop, P||Amezaga, CF|
|Ryan, 2B||Olsen, P|