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Gameday Thread, #137: 9/4 vs. Marlins

Enrique Gonzalez, RHP (3-6, 5.42)
Brian Moehler, RHP (7-8, 6.04)

After the events of the weekend, we suddenly have a new bete noire as Arizona fans. The traumas which were the first inning suddenly seem like nothing beside the issues we experienced in Washington during the eighth inning. If there was any way we could bypass it, take a mulligan, or cross it off the scorecard entirely, I'm sure Bob Melvin would be looking into it on the flight to Florida.

The good news is, he probably won't have to agonize over whether or not to pull his starter for the eighth on Monday. Not with EnGon on the mound... He hasn't pitched into it this season - indeed, he's got anywhere past the sixth inning only once in seven starts since July 22nd, and that was a single out into the seventh. His ERA in August was 6.32, and word is that he's been working with Bryan Price:

Price thinks Gonzalez is trying to be too perfect with his pitches. Though the right-hander flourished early in the season, he's been scuffling while trying to duplicate that success. "He started out and was throwing the ball real well. It's easy to expect to be successful when you're throwing the ball well," Price said. "But sometimes you lose that expectation when you struggle. His command has depreciated in his recent outings, mostly because he wants to make too good of a pitch."

If there is no apparent improvement, Enrique may find his remaining starts given to other deserving candidates. Dustin Nippert maybe, or perhaps EdGon might get to hang around a bit longer than Wednesday's scheduled spot start. It'll be interesting to see if the sweep in Washington has convinced Melvin to give up on 2006, and start preparing for next season. As I already mentioned, there is no reason any longer why LuGon, Counsell or Easley should see more starts the rest of the way, but I somehow doubt we'll be so lucky as to see such brutal trimming of deadwood.

Speaking of which, I spent much of Sunday evening with Mrs. SnakePit wielding power-tools in the garden. One of our orange trees were preparing to make a push into our bedroom, while I'm not saying our lawn was out of control, but it concealed several native tribes, a hitherto unknown species of rodent and Osama Bin Laden. An hour of strenuous but enjoyable weed-whacking later, and order has been restored. Though you do not want to know what happens when you weed-whack the corpse of a dead bird. Remember when Randy Johnson hit that bird with a fastball? Same thing here: feathers everywhere. All I can say is, thank god I had my mouth shut...

Anyway, should be up for first pitch or thereabouts. Here's to a rookie-heavy lineup: that'll be something which I can get enthusiastic about over the last month. Because, let's face it, there's not much else in that box at the current time.