|Anything Goes: Adenhart and Webb|
Written by Adam Adkins (Contact & Archive) on April 11, 2009
Anyone who believes in the Lord should be praying for the family and friends of Nick Adenhart and frankly any other victim like this.Â I cannot put into words the sorrow I feel as a fan of baseball, a fan of pitching.Â Iâ€™ve already spoken to God about Adenhart, and I feel that is the best gift I can give.Â Not only the Angels, but all of baseball has lost a bright young pitcher.Â Rest in peace, Nick.
On to baseball.Â Brandon Webbâ€™s bad shoulder could very easily be nothing, but in the same vein itâ€™s quite worrisome.Â We hold pitchers up so high, everything little thing that happens with them is newsworthy.Â Take CC Sabathiaâ€™s roughâ€”admittedly, he was awfulâ€”first start as a Yankee.Â He walked a bunch and struck out no one, so we start thinking, is he hurt, what was wrong, why did he stink, is he going to stink all year, they still owe him seven years!Â All of those random and increasingly depressing thoughts, in rapid fire succession.Â We love pitchers, especially young ones that are quite good.
Webb is older than Sabathia, but I certainly still feel he is young.Â And having a stiff shoulder, which I guess is like stubbing a toe, while not good, is probably not season-ending, much less the gasp-worthy idea of â€˜career-threatening.â€™Â But shoulder injuries are so daunting, even the mere thought of an issue with Webbâ€™s right shoulder had me worried, and Iâ€™m not a D-Backs fan.
Speaking of Arizona, they are a lot closer to suck than greatness.Â Webb and Dan Haren lead a rotation that is not strongâ€”Doug Davis has no business pitching any longerâ€”and the lineup has a lot of projection in it, but itâ€™s a little light on current production.Â Justin Upton ought to start producing real soon, but he might now.Â Conor Jackson could hit 30 home runs or not.Â
Thatâ€™s a long winded way of saying the Diamondbacks need Webb healthy.Â They are a long shot anyway, given the Dodgers being in their division and also happening to be much more talented than Arizona.Â Without 230 strong innings from Webb and 200+ from Haren, they have absolutely no chance.
What to do if Webb misses a great deal of time?Â Would Josh Byrnes consider trading Haren?Â It would be an interesting idea.Â They appear to be in the perilous situation of young talent that is either about to blossom or probably never will.Â That could mean by 2010 they are ready to rock and roll, or the core is gone and youâ€™ll need to restart.Â Now, Iâ€™m not saying none of their players will be good if they arenâ€™t breakouts this year, but the likelihood of stardom (or in Uptonâ€™s case, being Ruthian) goes down a bit.Â And those are the kinds of things that GMs should pay attention to.
All in all, Iâ€™m sure Webb will be fine, but Iâ€™m worried.