Friday, April 23, 2010

Bench Party Hosted by Qualls

There are some parties that you can always crash: As long as you know where and when the party is, you can just show up and drink and eat other people's booze and food.

On the other hand, the parties that you can never crash and are never invited to are the Bench Parties.

Chad Qualls held himself a nice bit of a Bench Party last night, partially thanks to the ineffectiveness of Aaron Heilman - who gave up an extra run to turn a four-run lead into a save situation for the Arizona Diamondbacks - and the Lucky Charm that is Kirk Gibson, filling in for the ejected A.J. Hinch.

Given that benching Verlander turned out all right - preventing him from beefing up my ERA and WHIP (4 ER and 2.00 WHIP in 5 IP) - and I didn't kick myself too much for not benefitting from his first win of his season, I decided to show Qualls the bench. I argued that I needed Qualls to give me a reason to believe and trust in him and his ballet moves on the mound. I backed up the argument with the fact that the heart of the Philadelphia Phillies have battered Qualls (historical) and pointed to the 1/3 IP disaster on 4/21 against the St. Louis Cardinals (recent trend).

Needless to say, Qualls came through, inducing a groundout from Palcido Polanco and notching that elusive save for the Arizona Diamondbacks . . . on my bench.

Now the question is, do I invite myself to the Qualls party, knowing fully well that it's perfectly possible for him to a lay another ERA and WHIP explosion or perhaps even some INF bombs?

Is Qualls finally starting to get into the groove of things or was it just a lucky result, born out of a special circumstance (the ejection of Hinch, the said Lucky Charm, and Heilman's mess)?

Let's hope that it's a turning point. Since Quall's relative ineffectiveness in Los Angeles (2 BS) and at home against the Cardinals (4 ER in 2 1/3 IP 1 SV), Qualls, Hinch, and the rest of the Diamondbacks needed an outing like this: A confidene building small step.

Despite the offensive ERA and WHIP, Qualls have been a victim of poor defense and high BIBAP thus far.

Give credit to Hinch for stirring up the pot a bit and getting himself kicked out of the game, Gibson for making the right moves, and Qualls for doing his job (finally).

Yes, I'm plugging Qualls right back into the starting lineup and hoping for the best, and hoping for more smirky smiles from Gibson and company.

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