Sunday, April 13, 2008

Kuo takes Loaiza's spot in the rotation

Joe Torre has announced that Hong-Chi Kuo will start the 2nd game of the upcoming series against the Pirates in place of Esteban Loaiza. Loaiza will go to the bullpen for the time being.

The move makes sense for a couple of reasons: 1) Kuo is the only lefty in the rotation, and it's nice to have at least 1. 2) Kuo has yet to give up a run in 6.2 innings this year, while Loaiza is sporting a 6.75 ERA. Even though Loaiza only made 1 start, that was enough to prompt the change in Torre's mind.

To be honest, I could probably list another reason, in that Kuo is just better. Loaiza pitched well enough in the Spring to earn the job, but it's not like he was the clear-cut winner. He was just good enough. Because of recurring arm problems, Kuo is not the type to pitch in consecutive days, so as long as he can make quality starts, he'll probably be kept there. Sucks for Loaiza, but it's not that surprising.

For now, Kuo will slide into the #5 spot in the rotation in between Hiroki Kuroda and Brad Penny.

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