View Full Version : What to do if Claussen has another bad outing?

George Foster
06-04-2006, 11:49 PM
I think Claussen is at a cross roads with not only his career as a Red but his career in general. If he has another bad outing as a starter, do the Reds keep him in the starting rotation, move him to the bull pen, or?

Who could replace him in the rotation? big questions. If Claussen has a good outing against the cards, it just makes you scratch your head even more. It seems he is just going through the motions sometimes. Like he lacks concentration. What happened in Chicago with two outs is typical.

I'm looking forward in reading the discussions about this matter. This guy is a mystery.

06-04-2006, 11:58 PM
Not sure the last game was his fault. He pitched 4 good innings before the rain delay. The bummer thing is Maddux has been sucking lately, but pitched well that outing. I think Claussen still has some rope. Especially considering we don't have a replacement. Only Paul Wilson when he gets back is another alternative and that doesnt' excite me either. Just how thankful to have EZ doing so well and Milton looks like he's back. If we can get the good Claussen then watch out I think we can compete espeically considering PUjols may be out awhile.

06-05-2006, 12:01 AM
Leave him there, nobody is available to replace him.

06-05-2006, 12:06 AM
I just said that, but just not in so little words :)

06-05-2006, 12:13 AM
I just said that, but just not in so little words :)
Indeed, I just read the topic.

I like the way you said it better :D but I doubt Paul Wilson will ever throw in a major league game again.

The only other option? Mays

Fear it ;)

06-05-2006, 12:17 AM
What about Germano.

I agree with the Claussen. He just seems to be a pit off his stride. Whether its because of the change in pitching coaches or whatever. The reports don't seem to indicate any major mechanical or other deficiencies.

06-05-2006, 12:18 AM
I advise patience with Claussen. He has to get it together sooner or later, and he's still young. Young pitchers are inconsistent. Comes with the territory.

06-05-2006, 12:34 AM
I advise patience with Claussen. He has to get it together sooner or later, and he's still young. Young pitchers are inconsistent. Comes with the territory.

I totally agree. In most of his starts, he gets in trouble by trying to pitch on the corners. Some of his close pitches are not given the benefit of the doubt by the umpires. That results in high pitch counts and fatigue. And the result of that is lots of runs.

Truth is, Brandon is still a thrower and not a pitcher. He wants to be a pitcher, but he isn't there yet. He had improved a lot with the hiring of Verne Ruhle, but with Ruhle not being around much this year it looks like he has regressed.

But give him time. I'm told he has a lot of the qualities you look for in a pitcher. When he learns to pitch I think he'll make us proud.

06-05-2006, 12:35 AM
Trade him and LaRue to Colorado for RHP Jason Jennings and a prospect.

06-05-2006, 12:57 AM
I contend that he would make a decent relief pitcher.

At the very least, a LOOGY.

They'll need someone when Mercker or Hammond are gone, and he's (Claussen) had decent success against lefties so far.

06-05-2006, 01:00 AM
Claussen had a very respectable season last year. He blew up in his last start, otherwise would have been one of the only Red starters since Pete Harnisch to post an era under 4.00 for an entire season of work. GAB should favor left handed starters. Personally, I like what I see a lot of the time with Claussen. He was cruising along for four innings in Milwaukee before being shelled for 9 runs. He was in control in Chicago before the rain. He can be very efficient when he has his command, and goes through long stretches of effectiveness even in starts that ultimately wreck his stat line. Tom Browning went through something very much like this before he was sent down to AAA many moons ago. When he came back, he became a solid major league pitcher. I think that would have happened for Browning if they had left him alone, and I think it will happen for Claussen too.

No way you take his spot away from him after two months. He is going to contribute a lot to this club before the season is done.

06-05-2006, 02:16 AM
My personal thoughts are that Clausen should never have seen the Majors till he was dominant in triple A or atleast in dbl a, sadly the past can not be changed. It is far easier to suck and have a plan than to disguise a franchises pitching as a true ML starting staff. The point I am trying to make is rushing Kids to the majors is not a wise idea, building there confidence level and maturity levels to deal with the mental part of the game is the most vital element out there. Claussen cruises for 3 plus innings then loses focus and his game goes to feces. This kid has a ton of ability but what do you do now? Send him down and he may be crushed, learn from the sins past and keep them in mind for Wood and Homer. Desperation is not only a scent it is the move of a perinial also ran.

06-05-2006, 03:17 AM
First off, Claussen was the teams 2nd best starter in 2005.

Now, that isn't saying a whole lot, given the state of that pitching staff, but it is good for at least something, that he was able to put up non-horrible numbers pitching half his games in GABP last year. For that he should get more than a little bit of rope this season.

Second - lets take a look at his season so far.

11 total starts

63.1IP, 75H, 38ER, 20BB, 46K, 5.40ERA, 1.59WHIP, 2.30K/BB, 2.84BB/9, 6.54K/9, 10.66H/9

Looking at it game by game.

He's had 11 starts
3 would be termed "quality starts" (at least 6IP with 3ER or less)
3 would be "quality starts" as he allowed 3ER or less but he didn't pitch the full 6 innings.
3 of his starts had 4 ER.
2 of his starts were total bombs, and both of those were against Milwaukee.

Actually, if you take out the two Milwaukee games, here are his season numbers

54.1IP, 60H, 24ER, 15BB, 39K, 3.98ERA, 1.38WHIP, 6.46K/9, 9.94H/9

Which are actually pretty good numbers - about equal with what he put up last year.

I wouldn't be throwing Brandon under the bus quite yet, I think he still has quite a bit left to offer the Reds.

Maybe the Brewers caught him tipping his pitches, or maybe they just own him- Who knows.

06-05-2006, 03:19 AM
For some more "fun with Claussen's numbers"

His ERA right now has him 84th in the bigs (One spot behind Randy Johnson)
WHIP is T-79th (Tied with Gil Meche, just behind Cliff Lee and Livan Hernandez).

His K/BB ratio is pretty good in comparison to the major league wide talent (T-40th) and he's 36th overall in K's per 9 innings. He's tied with Jeff Weaver and Roy Oswalt for 59th overall in Pitches per Plate Apperance.

As of right now there are 114 pitchers who've thrown at least 50IP at this point in the season, so you can look at those numbers and see some silver linings.

06-05-2006, 05:51 AM
I'm not too concerned about Claussen. He has a 5.40 ERA, while the team ERA is 4.40. About one full point of his ERA can be traced to his disastrous game against Milwaukee on April 22 when he surrendered nine earned runs in three innings. No one can argue -- He wasn't on his game that day. He also got left out to dry. If you ask me, any starting pitcher who surrenders more than 5 or 6 runs during the first three innings of a game should get yanked. Not sure why that didn't happen on April 22, but the blame certainly extends beyond Claussen.

Overall, he's been like most young pitchers. All over the map. Some days he's hot, some days not.

He hasn't gotten a lot of run support. And while he's not generating headlines like Arroyo or Harang, he hasn't at all pitched himself out of the rotation like Williams.

I would bear with him. We might reap some rewards for doing so down the road. If not, then if your fifth starter has an ERA roughly equivlent to the team average (minus one bad hair day), then the problems we need to be addressing aren't with him or any of the other starters, but rather with the bullpen.

The fact that there is no starter in AAA pitching lights-out makes this a no-brainer. We stay the course, or else we panic and surrender Kearns or another player of comparable value or a group of players to land a replacement SP who may or may not perform any better than Claussen.

I'd just stay the course for now. If it becomes clearer that we need a 5th starter, better to deal in July. Then, maybe we don't have to cough up much talent. We might have to spend some money and eat an inflated contract for a half-season, but that's the piper we'll have to pay if we still think we have a ghost of a chance to compete in '06.

06-05-2006, 10:57 AM
Claussen is a power pitcher without the power. He tries to go after hitters but doesn't have the stuff. He just hasn't recovered his stuff since the surgery and I don't think he ever will. I like his competitiveness but he needs to learn to pitch with what he has not what he had. Even if he succeeds at this, he will never be anything better than a 4 guy.

Marc D
06-05-2006, 11:10 AM
Looking at it game by game.

He's had 11 starts
3 would be termed "quality starts" (at least 6IP with 3ER or less)
3 would be "quality starts" as he allowed 3ER or less but he didn't pitch the full 6 innings.
3 of his starts had 4 ER.
2 of his starts were total bombs, and both of those were against Milwaukee.

As this season has developed it's pretty clear Claussen is our #5 starter. I can live with a mix of 80% "quality starts" and 20% shellings from my #5 guy.

06-05-2006, 11:23 AM
High pitch counts haunted he and Harang earlier in their careers because of lack of a k pitch and lack of control. Aaron turned the corner by finding both (most games), while Claussen still hasn't gotten over the hump.
When he can spot the ball (first 4 in Chicago were a great example), he is a an above average pitcher.

When he can't spot the ball, hitters will wait around for their pitch to hit...they just don't fear getting two strikes against Brandon because he doesn't possess a hammer k pitch when his control is off.

I'm with the group that says be patient with Brandon, especially with Ruhle out.