From the looks of it, and mind you it is still really early, but it seems like Jesse Foppert might be the real deal. Yes he was highly touted and yes he ahs had a little major league experience. That being said he is still young and a lot of times these guys who have Tommy john not only return and still be able to pitch, but they return and are better than before. It’s like what Eddie Johnson, former sonic great, said in a recent interview: "Surgery doesn’t just fix things it makes them better!" I think this could be the case with Foppert. He has looked very good this spring. Posting the following numbers through, mind you, 3 games. He has started all 3 games going a total of 7 innings. In that time he has allowed 2 hits and 1 earned run. He struck out 3 however he has walked 6. Those numbers are solid though.
Now here are the scenario’s I see for Foppert over this season. The mariners basically can go two routes. I think they would like to keep him a starter and as it stands now there is no room for him in the rotation. S if they want to start him then obviously he will go to Tacoma and start there. That does not mean of course that he will be there all year but it is a good spot for him. Plus being so close it is a quick call for him to come up for a spot start at home here and there.
Ok say he remains this good all spring and the mariners decide he is too good to keep off the roster. Well in this case it seems to me that he would fill the Ryan Franklin mold of 2001. He would be our long guy out of the pen. I know how valuable that is for a team But I would rather that go to a older guy who is serviceable and let Foppert continue to get stronger and mature in AAA.
I also see that Third scenario which I like but I am almost 99.9% convinced that the mariners would never do it. That is make Jamie Moyer a at home starter where he, lets face it, is near Cy Young Caliber, and let Foppert take Jamie’s starts on the road. TO keep both guys in shape they can throw simulated sessions on their prospective start days if they are missing one or two. In Fopperts case whose to say when your home for a long home stand you don’t send him down for a couple starts at triple AAA just to keep his arm alive. I really like this scenario as I see it not only taking home pressure away from Foppert, but it benefits the team in letting him get some serious Big league experience while only improving your pitching staff at the same time. Jamie is a pitcher that I love in spacious ballparks. But when the mariners take that first flight down to Texas……that will scare me.
Perhaps if Mike and I see Mr. Bavasi this year at Spring training I’ll present this idea to him or at least maybe try to get some insight as to why this would or wouldn’t work for them.