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Finding it in your heart to forgive Kyle Lohse: A Self-Help Manual

A special guest post by Dan Moore, M.D., author of Finding It in Your Heart to Forgive Adam Kennedy, Finding It in Your Heart to Forgive Just About Anybody, and Defense against a Dark Heart: A Draco Malfoy Songfic

Sometimes our friends and loved ones can hurt us, even when they don't mean to. It's inevitable—we're human beings, with our own wants and needs, and oftentimes it's difficult for even the most perceptive among us to realize, let alone come to grips with, the way they come into conflict. Cardinals fans needed Kyle to pitch like he did in 2008. The Cardinals needed him to sign Kyle contract two or three weeks later than he actually did. Kyle needed to suck for a while. All parties concerned, I'm willing to say, have been a little selfish about it. They've looked at this situation with their Mine, instead of their Mind!

But that doesn't mean we can't come to a positive compromise here! The way I see it, there are a few win-win-wins available to us in this sticky situation: 

1. Cardinals fans could lower their expectations about Kyle Lohse. Done and done! Kyle cut half a walk off his career averages in his first go-round with the Cardinals, and was overrated by his first-half win total and terrible stablemates anyway. Cardinals fans have successfully compromised, and so long as Jaime Garcia continues to pitch well will likely be ready and happy to accept anything south of a 4.50 ERA for the duration of the season, so long as he does the innings-eating thing.

2. The Cardinals could finance and build a functioning time machine with the money left on Kyle Lohse's contract; upon going back in time, they could either prevent the failure of Lehman Brothers or bankroll a team of physicists to learn what would happen when the funding to construct the time machine never leaves Future-DeWitt-Prime's bank account at the appointed time, after which they could sign Kyle Lohse at a discount. This is an unsuccessful compromise, and by failing to avert global financial catastrophe the Cardinals would be showing a certain unseemly selfishness. But the Cardinals are doing the right thing by paying Kyle's salary anyway, on time and in real currency. This is owning up to your own mistake—and you have to do it, because nobody owns your stuff but you!

3. Kyle Lohse could pitch better than he's been pitching lately, already. Yesterday's game was an important step for Kyle, because all steps are important—after all, if you miss one, you're going to fall down, no matter how small it is! Kyle and the Cardinals realized that it's better to work together than work apart! The team put four runs on the board for him, working without selfish, me-centric dingers, and he responded by putting together a perfectly palatable game, one he ought to be proud of. 

Kyle showed real attention to the Cardinals' needs by throwing a game that was not only good but their kind of good. Working almost exclusively with the sinker in the early-going, he didn't mix in his first breaking pitch until he was five outs into the game. What a successful compromise! Kyle's historically a breaking ball-centric pitcher—his fastball is a career -89 runs below average—but with nothing else seeming to work he found considerable success throwing his sinker as single-mindedly as the most fervent of Duncan devotees. 

It might have worked too well! When he went back to his slider/changeup/curveball-centric pitching style, after he'd gotten established, he began to struggle! But yesterday's start was, as incredible as it may seem, his fourth quality start in eight tries, and his third in five. With the help of the bullpen—particularly Jason Motte, who appears to have molted again and is now throwing triple digit fastballs exclusively—any damage that could have been done was reined in by the power of positive linking [of positive actions from multiple compromisers], which is a catchphrase I'm still working on. 

Next time, if your buddy danupbaby is kind enough to have me back, I'd like to share with you an excerpt from my new book—Finding It in Your Heart to Forgive The Lineup after They Do Something Good! Until then, keep looking up! Because the only thing you'll get if you look down is dizzy!


... I don't think I'm going to have him back.