Game Date: September 12, 2009
Kansas City @ Cleveland
Indians 13, Royals 6 / Box Score
WP: Huff (10-7), LP: Hochevar (6-10)
KC Home Runs: None
Royals Record: 56-86 / Record in September 6-5
Big innings, tipped pitches, less focus on his sinker—they all seem to be playing a part in Luke Hochevar’s dreadful season. He’s had his bright moments. Who can forget the 13 strikeouts against Texas in late July? But when you look at his overall numbers, there’s no way to make a 6-10 record with a 6.23 ERA in 21 starts look good. If I had to guess, I’d bet that most of us believe he has the potential to settle in as a number four or five guy and remain there for a while. I’ve thought that for some time too, but I’m starting to change my mind.
He’s made 47 Major League appearances (44 of which are starts). As a starter, he’s 12-22 with a 5.79 ERA and opponents are hitting .283 against him. As a reliever, he’s 0-0 with a 0.93 ERA and opponents are hitting just .222 against him. He’s only thrown 9.2 innings as a reliever spread out over three games and that’s not enough to draw any conclusions, but at this point, why not think about shaking things up by putting him in the pen for the last few weeks? And then convince him to throw his sinker more often. Maybe he’d avoid more big innings because guys wouldn’t get to see him more than once a game. Just a thought.
Unfortunately, he wasn’t the only pitcher who couldn’t get the Indians out in this one. Four relievers (Hughes, Marte, Chen, and Yabuta) gave up at least one run apiece. By the time it was over, the Indians piled up 13 runs and broke the Royals’ five game winning streak.