Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Jenkins: Ben Sheets’ tenacity is no joking matter

Hollis Green and gold…

Behind all the levity, such an integral part of Sheets’ personality, lies a fierce work ethic and considerable patience. A lot of pitchers find themselves out of work, or needing some serious adjustments, after the type of surgery (torn flexor tendon) he endured. To me, Sheets’ most telling comment Friday concerned his willingness to pitch through the 2008 stretch drive despite knowing that his arm, as they say, was falling off.

Asked if he thought the Brewers would have handled him differently in retrospect, he said, “They couldn’t have handled me differently. I was on the bump (mound) - I wasn’t taking myself out of there. If I could go back, I wouldn’t change a thing. I’d go out there and be willing to blow my arm out again.”

This is something too few people understand. Every time a pitcher gets hurt - at least in modern times, in the paranoia over pitch counts - it’s the manager’s fault. The pitching coach’s fault. Has to be somebody’s fault. Dusty Baker, as sensitive to a player’s plight as any manager in the game, still hears from horribly unenlightened critics who believe he carelessly blew out arms on the Giants, Cubs and now the Reds.

It’s competition, folks. It’s a strong-willed athlete who would do anything to take the mound. It’s a manager with faith, and the good sense to ride the hot hand. It’s Robb Nen, Kerry Wood, Ben Sheets. The injuries come, or maybe they don’t, but the operative phrase is “Let’s go,” not “Jeez, I’m pretty worried.”

Repoz Posted: March 06, 2010 at 01:13 PM | 9 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: athletics, sabermetrics

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. GregQ Posted: March 06, 2010 at 03:49 PM (#3473898)
Yeah because they do not want a long term career. Jenkins believes that all of the A's pitchers that never recovered from Billy Martin's reign preferred having a few winning seasons rather than a long successful career.
   2. joker24 Posted: March 06, 2010 at 04:24 PM (#3473917)
It's a fine line to walk in terms of pitching through pain vs. pitching your way into injury. All of these guys are pretty much dealing with damaged arms all the time.
   3. Walt Davis Posted: March 06, 2010 at 06:45 PM (#3473988)
Jenkins believes that all of the A's pitchers that never recovered from Billy Martin's reign preferred having a few winning seasons rather than a long successful career.

Athletes are weird and that is quite possibly true. Steve Stone has several times said he knew he was blowing out his arm in his Cy Young season ... and he wouldn't change a thing. If you ask Mark Prior if he regrets all those innings in 2003 and I doubt he'd say yes.

Which is why it's the MANAGER's job to get the pitcher out of there and help keep him healthy. But, in the case of managers, not only do they have much the same competitive spirit as the players but _their_ career security will be helped by taking that team all the way. If the Cubs don't have that 2003 run, Baker's probably gone one year earlier and maybe not hired later by the Reds.
   4. bobm Posted: March 06, 2010 at 08:28 PM (#3474034)
It’s competition, folks. It’s a strong-willed athlete who would do anything to take the mound.

What about the money? He's entitled to whatever he can get, but, please, let's cut out the romantic B.S.

<u>Salaries and Bonuses</u>

1999 drafted (1-10)   $ 2,450,000
2001 Milwaukee Brewers    200,000
2002 Milwaukee Brewers    290,000
2003 Milwaukee Brewers    428,000
2004 Milwaukee Brewers  2,425,000
2005 Milwaukee Brewers  6,000,000
2006 Milwaukee Brewers  9,625,000
2007 Milwaukee Brewers 11,125,000
2008 Milwaukee Brewers 12,125,000
<u>2010 Oakland Athletics 10,000,000 (plus performance bonuses: $0.5M each for 165, 175, 185, 195 IP)</u>
Career:                54,668,000

Sources: BB-REF, Cot's
   5. Walt Davis Posted: March 06, 2010 at 10:02 PM (#3474100)
Wow. I thought the Sheets contract was 1/$8 and that was pretty horrible. 1/$10 is ridiculous.
   6. jmp Posted: March 06, 2010 at 10:18 PM (#3474106)
What about the money

He didn't earn anything in 2009. Sheets could have shut down in 2008 and he would have made something in 2009. Heck, he could have accepted the Brewers arbitration offer in 2009 and made a nice check.

I don't find it at all hard to believe that Sheets really wanted to pitch in games that mattered in 2008 and was willing to experience damage to do so. Of course, helping a team get to the playoffs would have helped his pocketbook as well, but I don't know that it's safe to assume it the was the only motivation.
   7. Nasty Nate Posted: March 06, 2010 at 10:41 PM (#3474112)
If you ask Mark Prior if he regrets all those innings in 2003 and I doubt he'd say yes.

I bet he has some regrets about that last one.
   8. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: March 06, 2010 at 11:26 PM (#3474125)
Hm. I'm starting to like this Sheets fellow.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.



<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF


Thanks to
ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick
for his generous support.


You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogHardball’s winners and losers at halfway point of MLB season | New York Post
(4 - 1:37pm, Jul 05)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - July 2015
(494 - 1:37pm, Jul 05)
Last: Athletic Supporter is trying to remember your name

NewsblogBen Zobrist is the mystery hitter Mets would ‘overpay’ to get | New York Post
(13 - 1:31pm, Jul 05)
Last: bobm

NewsblogOTP - July 2015: Winning the Political Game: Politics is More Like Baseball Than Football
(658 - 1:29pm, Jul 05)
Last: BDC

NewsblogOMNICHATTER 7-5-2015
(7 - 1:27pm, Jul 05)
Last: Misirlou is too lofty, and grabs up all the light

NewsblogNick Cafardo | Sunday Baseball Notes: Who should make the 2015 MLB All-Star teams?
(2 - 1:17pm, Jul 05)
Last: Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site

NewsblogScioscia Reigns and Dipoto Resigns: What the Heck Is Going on With the Angels? «
(4 - 1:14pm, Jul 05)
Last: cardsfanboy

(85 - 12:24pm, Jul 05)
Last: BDC

NewsblogCharges pending in alleged St. Louis Cardinals computer intrusion of Houston Astros -
(13 - 12:13pm, Jul 05)
Last: Zach

NewsblogRangers notes: Hamilton may go back on disabled list | The Star Telegram
(1 - 11:46am, Jul 05)
Last: Pat Rapper's Delight

NewsblogOT: Soccer June 2015
(931 - 11:16am, Jul 05)
Last: frannyzoo

NewsblogMLB and the Grateful Dead - JOIN US FOR THE FINAL 5 SHOWS EVER!
(221 - 10:14am, Jul 05)
Last: Biff, highly-regarded young guy

NewsblogOT: Wrestling Thread November 2014
(1002 - 9:43am, Jul 05)
Last: Rowland Office Supplies

NewsblogBrian McCann’s Three-Run Homer in 12th Helps Yankees Walk Off With a Victory - The New York Times
(5 - 7:42am, Jul 05)
Last: boteman asks Where's My Ring?

NewsblogAlex Rodriguez, New York Yankees settle dispute over bonus payment
(17 - 5:59am, Jul 05)
Last: Swedish Chef

Page rendered in 0.1988 seconds
48 querie(s) executed