Thursday, May 28, 2009

Myers Finally Tells the Truth

After getting hit hard again last night, Brett Myers finally came clean and told the truth--he's been pitching with a very sore hip that prevents him from planting and pushing off the way he needs to be able to do to pitch effectively.  He described a sharp nerve pain: "It kind of runs from my hip down to my knee sometimes. It might be a nerve."

Obviously, he needs to do what he needs to do to get well.  That much is obvious.

I also respect his desire to play hurt, and to do his best.  There's no question that Brett Myers is a competitor, and I have always admired that about him.  However, that raises another issue: how smart is it for a high-priced major league pitcher to hide an injury like that which (a) hurts the team, which continues to trot him out there expecting him to perform at a level that is physically impossible at the moment and (b) which could cause him to alter his motion and irreparably damage his arm?  

There comes a time when you have to do the right thing, set aside your own ego, and seek help.  I respect Myers for do so, but I can't help but ask why he waited so long to do so if this has been bothering him that much?  Getting help sooner not only would have helped him, it also would have helped the team.  I'd rather see him spend some time on the disabled list, get well, and come back to pitch the way we all know he can, rather than to have him continue to get hit hard and lose games when he's not pitching at his best.

A trip to the DL for Myers raises the important question of who takes his place in the rotation.  It shouldn't be Chan Ho Park, who seems to be thriving in the bullpen.  That means that the Phils either have to bring up someone like Carlos Carrasco, who made a run at making the team in spring training, or they have to go out and trade for a starting pitcher.  Quality starters don't come cheap. 

I hope Myers gets well soon.  The Phils need him--at his best--in order to compete.

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