After two straight wins this week, the Orioles lost on Tuesday night to the Pittsburgh Pirates, 9-3 at PNC Park in the Steel City.
Well, Jeremy Guthrie was on the hill again for Baltimore and early on the game, you had to have some legitimate concern about him. After exiting early from his last start due to back issues, Guthrie gave up five runs in the first three innings, and the Orioles simply could not come back from it.
He kept the team in the game and it is a shame that once again his team could not plate in enough runs. Although Baltimore would have probably lost the game, the fact is that the team has not done the job offensively when it has needed to for him.
The Orioles showed some signs of life in the fifth inning as they plated three runs off Pittsburgh starter James McDonald, but that was all they could muster.
Right now, Guthrie is 2-9 and leads the American League in losses. However, if you look at his peripheral numbers and discount the nine losses, the man has an astounding 3.79 ERA!
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been saying that the Orioles should perhaps extend Guthrie’s contract. As said last week, he is the de facto ace of the staff, an innings eater and a guy who seems to very accountable for whatever happens on the mound – his fault or not. It is almost at times Guthrie is stuck in neutral.
His situation in Baltimore may not be bad; alas, it has not improved much either in the past several seasons.
However, is it now to the point that the Orioles should trade him and move on? Fans have argued this. My friends and I have argued this over email and at our Sunday morning hang-out.
As I heard on 105.7 this morning on the Ed Norris/Steve Davis show while driving into, the conversation centered on keeping Guthrie versus trading him. They figured that the Orioles would be well served to trade him to a contender not only for help, but also for Guthrie’s sake.
The hosts believed that Guthrie needs to be traded to save his career.
Well, the more I thought about it, the more I agreed with them. At this point, Guthrie is on the wrong side of the 30 and may have a limited amount of time before his decline phase begins. I do not know if the Orioles are considering him a viable part of their future; nevertheless, I believe Guthrie would prosper if put into a contending situation.
I would like to see what Guthrie could do if he ever pitched in a meaningful game down the stretch.
The fan in me says to keep Guthrie; however, the blogger and armchair analysts thinks that the Orioles should send him on his way, allow him to evolve somewhere else and pitch for a contender.