By Danny Mehigan
The Brewers kinda, sorta, maybe announced a tentative starting rotation for the regular season today.
Through Boxcar Children-like investigation, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel beat writers and other media have deduced that new manager Ken Macha and the 2009 Brewers’ Opening Day starter will be … insert drumroll here … JEFF SUPPAN!
Oh boy. I remember the Brewers last meaningful game, which was just on October 5. Game 4 of the NLDS, Miller Park, a win at home sets up a winner-take-all Game 5 in Philadelphia with all the momentum in the Crew’s corner. It was tied for five whole pitches before “Soup” gave up a dinger to Jimmy Rollins. The game wasn’t even in doubt. It was the first Brew Crew playoff game I’d ever attended, and only the second home playoff game since 1982 – well before I was even alive. And that was that.
Well, before you think I’m just angry and bitter (though you’re right in some respects), I actually think it’s a good move. To start the season, Milwaukee heads to San Francisco and (unless Bruce Bochy also gets tricky on kids) will face Cy Young winner and 24 year-old wonderboy Tim Lincecum in game numero uno. Even with Yovani Gallardo or the red-hot Dave Bush on the hill, it’d be a tall task to beat Lincecum. So why not let the veteran pitch?
The pros: Suppan feels all warm and special. He takes the day one jitters and pressure off the youngsters. Gallardo and Manny Parra will likely be better than whoever they face in games two and three of the series.
The cons: About a 97% chance the Brewers start 0-1. And nobody likes losing to the Giants, because that’s just embarrassing.
By the way, barring injury before the opener – in which case Seth McClung would take the spot, the rotation lines up like so:
1) Suppan. 2) Gallardo. 3) Parra. 4) Braden Looper. 5) Bush.