After Park signed a huge, five-year contract following the 2001 season, his ERAs went like this: 5.75, 7.58, 5.46, 5.74, 4.81. That 4.81 came last season with the Padres, who happen to play in the pitcher-friendliest ballpark in the major leagues. His ERA away from that pitcher-friendliest ballpark last season: 5.45. So leaving aside that 7.58 mark in 2003 -- he was hurt that season, and started only seven games in the majors -- Park seems to have established a fairly consistent level of "ability." ... That said, the decision to turn to Park upon Orlando Hernandez's injury seems like a strange one. There's not only the last five years of awfulness; there's also the last three weeks, as Hernandez racked up a 7.29 ERA in four starts with New Orleans. So why not fellow Zephyr Jorge Sosa (4-0, 1.13 ERA)? Because today was Park's turn to pitch. Which just reinforces my suspicion that today's pitching staffs are far, far too regimented.There was no good reason for Chan Ho Park to pitch on Monday other than the fact that it "was his day." If this thinking isn't backwards I don't know what is...Bring up a guy with a 7.29 ERA over one with a 1.13 ERA because of a 24 hour difference?
Every staff should carry at least one pitcher -- "swingman," they used to call him -- who's capable of giving you five or six decent innings in a pinch. But instead you bring up Park to get hammered. Again.
We should all hope that Omar, Willie, and the rest of the decision makers take Neyer's advice (as well as close to every Met fan's) and get Chan Ho back to New Orleans in a hurry.