It was his [Gil Meche's] third quality start in a row, but the right-hander didn't get a win in any of the starts.
Didn't we go through the same thing with Zack Greinke? Come on, bullpen; let's not waste another quality pitcher! Granted, Buehrle was coming off the no-no, which almost always means a win (or at the worst, a no-decision) in the following start. But here is the difference between the Greinke Curse and tonight's game: with Zack, the offense could never put together enough runs behind him. Tonight, the KC offense was certainly present -- four runs is enough to win a lot of games -- and the defense made some spectacular plays, but the bullpen was kind of embarassing. Kansas City had to call on five relievers, and none fulfilled their duties anywhere close to satisfactorily.
However, even after that rant, I'm still enthusiastically counting the hours until tomorrow night's game. Brian Bannister will make his first start for KC after starting the season in Omaha. Part of me is sad that he was called up (hint: it was the completely selfish part). The guy is FUN to watch when he's pitching well. I hope to see him light up the Sox the way he did opposing batters in AAA the two times I saw him.
On a tangentially related note:
I've long had mixed feelings about Mike Sweeney. In his earlier days with the Royals, I of course loved him, as it was fashionable to do so, and because he generally delivered on the fans' hype. Then as the seasons wore on, I got tired of his habit of swinging at the first pitch. Remember some of Nuke's early pitches in Bull Durham; the ones that would go five feet above the catcher's head or that far outside of the batter's box? I've been pretty sure at times that a pitcher could throw one of those pitches at Sweeney, and he'd swing at it, provided that it was the first pitch he saw in that at-bat.
Normally if a player did this sort of thing, I'd dismiss him and add him of my list of players about whom I'm not crazy. However, Mike Sweeney is a Catholic, and a good one at that. After spending all sememster wading through research about all the steroid-pumping jerks who populate the major leagues, it's always refreshing to hear Sweeney casually mention how he's going to head home, see his family, then go to Mass to cap off a great Sunday post-game. Hearing him say things like that -- and show his faith in other ways, like writing Bible verses with every autograph -- makes me more willing to be patient with his impatience at the plate.
Furthermore, he (along with many other players, including KC's own Mark Teahen and former Royal Jeff Suppan) is involved with Champions of Faith. I'm not going to say a whole lot yet because I haven't seen the film, but it looks like a rather awesome melding of two of the most important things in my life: my faith and my Game. I'm anxiously awaiting my copy.
I'll leave you with some videos related to Champions of Faith.