Penny gets San Francisco treat
Monday brought good news on
multiple fronts for Brad Penny.
Not only did his rocky
relationship with the Red Sox end, he also returned to the more pitcher-favorable
National League by signing with the Giants.
The NL West is nothing new to
Penny, who spent 4 1/2 seasons pitching for the Dodgers, including a career
year in 2007, when he went 16-4 with a career-best 3.03 ERA and 208 innings.
Oh, and there was that World Series championship he helped the Marlins win in
He also can’t be unhappy about
starting home games at the vast confines of AT&T Park, where he boasts a
respectable career ERA of 3.88 ERA.
Penny joins an already formidable rotation that includes Cy Young contenders Tim
Lincecum and Matt Cain, a resurgent Barry Zito and Jonathan Sanchez.
While many owners will undoubtedly
be scared off by the 5.61 ERA Penny compiled with the Red Sox, or the 8.31 ERA
in August, a change of scenery could be just what the doctor ordered.
A closer look shows that his
strikeout rate actually rebounded from a woeful 4.80 K/9 to 6.08, thanks in no
small part to higher velocity. Look no further than his fastball, which
increased from an average of 92.4 mph last year to 94 mph this season,
according to fangraphs.com.
Given the mediocrity floating around on the waiver wire this time of year, why not give Penny a second chance?
San Francisco only figures to
improve his marketability heading into free agency.
–Alex Cushing, MLB.com