Congrats to the Bruins on winning the Stanley Cup. This is coming from an angry Capitals fan, by the way, so when I opine on where to store the thing this summer, please, pay no mind.
As was mentioned here at OTM yesterday, the Angels released Scott Kazmir. Kazmir was a super great awesome amazing awesome super awesome pitcher, but the most important word there is "was." He isn't any of those superlatives anymore. In fact, he's pretty awful. So awful, in fact, that the Angels released him despite the fact that they're on the hook for about $10 million more in salary. Do you think the Angels are so stupid they'd flush $10 million down a hole? If you're answer contains the words "Vernon" and "Wells" then you may have a point, but the truth is if Kazmir could still pitch, if there was any minute (as in infinitesimal) shot he could still contribute anything at the major league level, he's still be wearing a Angels uniform. But he's not.
Yesterday, Jared asked the question, should the Sox take a chance on Kazmir? My answer, and I'm very confident in this, is no, no, no, a thousand times no. Remember how bad John Lackey was before hitting the DL? He was the worst pitcher in the AL with an ERA of about 9.00. Admittedly ERA isn't the best judge of pitchers, but at a certain point it's a useful metric. Kazmir's ERA is 17.02. In AAA! His ERA last year in 28 starts for the Angels was 6.00. He's terrible and he's been terrible for long enough that we know he's terrible. Brandon Duckworth is better. I hope that last sentence wasn't overkill. It's sad that such a promising pitcher's career is going to end like this, but injuries happen. Scott Kazmir is just the latest pitcher to succumb.
In other young wild pitcher news, Andrew Miller has decided to opt-out of using his opt-out clause and remain with the Red Sox. The word on the street is he'll be called up to Boston to pitch against the Padres on Monday night. Terry Francona said on WEEI that he sees Miller as part of the Red Sox plans for the future. We discussed Miller in the latest OTM podcast which should be out later today. Miller has been very effective in AAA recently, but his success in the majors is far from assured. Miller has an extensive track record of failure at the major league level. This isn't to say he's a lost cause or anything close to that, but to say we should temper our expectations, like Kevin Goldstein of BP. There's a reasoned discussion over at Sons of Sam Horn as well.
For those of you who can't get enough draft talk, Alex Speier of WEEI.com has Jim Callis of Baseball America on his podcast to talk about the players the Red Sox just picked in the recent draft. I wonder if he was asked about beer and sausage.
Fan Graphs franchise player draft took place last week and was interesting enough to merit mention in this space shortly thereafter. One of the more interesting choices in the draft was Steve Slowinski's choice of Carl Crawford at the seventh pick. Mr. Slowinski was give the opportunity to explain his reasoning at Fan Graphs today and it's an interesting read for any Sox fan, particularly one who's been hungering for positive things to read about Carl Crawford since, oh, say, April 1st.
Finally, a couple winners from Not Graphs. First, hitting a good curveball is hard. And scary. Yikes. Second, well, yikes.