"No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda
Big Klu (07-01-2013)
Yet I am hardly the only person who seemed to read it that way...
I was at the game Saturday. Leake was outstanding. I don't believe his current success is indicative of what his career norms will be, but I've always said a player is who he is until he proves he isn't. Leake was a batting tee in years past, always had a high H/9. Now he isn't. So for now he isn't.
I'll say this. He had ample opportunities to melt down Saturday, and he didn't. He showed a lot of maturity. It's altered my perception of him a bit. Not completely mind you, but I cannot argue too much with his results.
Raisel Ghul, the Demon's Head
Leake isn't the most valuable player for the Reds this year.
But if he hadn't stepped up the way he has its hard to tell where the Reds would be.
Latos has been incredible too.. not really his fault the pen has blown so many leads, but the games Leake has started have kept us in contention.
Again, not saying Leake is a better pitcher than Latos, just my definition of valuable.
Honestly, in hindsight, putting Chapman to the rotation and Leake to long relief or trade bait would've probably put us another 3-6 games behind in the standings. (Subtract Leake's good games, plus the back of the bullpen would be a disaster with Brox and Marshall out)
Thank you Walt and Bob for bringing winning baseball back to Cincy
Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!
"You only have to bat a thousand in two things; flying and heart transplants. Everything else you can go 4-for-5."
I think it is pretty clear that Leake has rounded a corner mentally.
Physically, he's still the same pitcher he always was. But mentally, he is new man. Take his 7/24 start for instance. He had nothing going for him that day (12 hits, 2 walks, 2 K's in 6 IP) and his defense didn't do him any favors either (2 errors), but he kept battling and somehow managed to hold the Giants to one run. The 2012 version of Leake would have lost focus, started serving up mistake pitches in the middle of the strikezone, and the game would have got out of hand. The 2013 version buckled down and found a way to escape unscathed inning after inning after inning.
Leake is not the same jittery kid who used to lose focus and lets games get away from him. He's not throwing mistake pitches at the worst possible time anymore. That is the big difference in him this season. It has allowed him to become consistent and reliable, which is the difference between a BOR guy and a TOR/MOR guy. Let Leake serve as an object lesson in the silliness of theoretical 'ceilings'. Leake has shattered his ceiling.
"This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner