Trade Javier Vasquez? Are you out of your fuzzy mind?
Except for Tommy Hanson—and Tommy is new and still in trial stage, so to speak— he’s the most dependable pitcher in the Braves zoo. He has spent a career striking out batters and living on starvation rations as far the offense goes. He’s another victim of Bobby Cox’s quick hand in late innings, when, no matter how well he may be in command, he’s out of there and the game is turned over to that wretched bullpen. He’s the Braves’ strikeout leader—130 in 112 innings. But more than that, he has given them the most impressive streak of starts, and could have had the best record of the lot. He’s lifted the other night, when Cox goes to Mike Gonzales, who has a style that reminds you of a drunken sailor, weaving and bobbing about, and Vasquez is betrayed again.
And shamefully, they speak of trading him. He has lived in the shadow of Derek Lowe, who has been a low producer, and Jair Jurrjens, who has shared the same lack of support as Vasquez. In order right now, I’d go Vasquez, Hanson, Jurrjens, Lowe and Kawakami. Trade him, my eye!
Escobar, sure. He is an inconsistent, addle-pated performer who’ll bring you to your feet cheering one time, then break your heart the next.
Who’s doing all this readjusting of the Braves’ roster for us? Buster Olney is it? A Vanderbilt man. I thought Vanderbilt produced men of education. That’s television for you.