Monday, November 2, 2009
Did anyone else think that maybe they saw the last of Brad Lidge on the mound last night?
As we have seen in previous playoffs, he can easily have his psyche crushed to a point of near no return. Of course, I'm speaking of when Albert Pujols crushed his soul in that 2005 NLCS with a mammoth homer off that fucking train in Enron.
In 2005, Lidge was absolutely lights out with a 2.29 ERA and 42 saves. Plus, his K/9 was a disgusting 13.1 while his BB/9 was 2.9, which is a little high but acceptable. With Lidge's nasty slider, one can live with that higher walk rate because his K/BB ratio at that point was still 4.48.
Unfortunately, that 2005 season was his peak.
Ever since that pivotal Pujols homer, his ERA has been 4.37 while his K/BB ratio has been heading south to a career low 1.79 this year. (Even in 2008's amazing 41 for 41 save season, he put up his second lowest K/BB ratio since being a closer of 2.63) Plus, his WHIP in 2005 was 1.15; in 2009, his WHIP was 1.81. You don't need to be a statistical analyzing genius like Zach to see that all of these are not good signs for Brad Lidge.
However, the biggest problem I see for him now is that he has to think about how he got crushed last night. And he gets to think about that all winter long. For a guy who clearly in 2006 got his mind fucked up by one 500-ft Pujols blast. Last night, he gave up two straight line drive doubles to surrender the lead. Nothing worked. The Yankees were not fooled at all by whatever he threw. He gets to re-run that over and over and over again in his head all winter since there is a good chance he won't pitch again until next spring.
Now, given this mental situation he has to deal with (and probably will very poorly... unless he is sent to the outreaches of Mongolia to study with Ra's al Ghul!) combined with his peripherals that have been sliding for five years... I introduce to you Ryan Madson as the 2010 Phillies Opening Day Closer.