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Time to trust Dontrelle?

By: Channing Cummins

The regular season for the Detroit Tigers is a week and a half away and the Tigers are still looking to fill their fifth spot in the rotation. The Tigers have a few familiar faces to consider while trying to fill this spot but the one name that has to jump out is Dontrelle Willis.

Yes, Dontrelle Willis has been one of the biggest mistakes for the Tigers in the last decade. His contract makes your blood boil and his lack of production is brutal. He's made a habit of filling the stat sheet with walks and runs, which tests the fans' patience with every pitch.

Now, we're left with the million dollar question. Should Willis be given the fifth spot? This decision might have the playoffs on the line so it's an important one.

If spring training is a sign of things to come then I believe the man has earned enough trust to be given the spot. He's totaled 15 innings pitched this spring with a 1.20 e.r.a, not bad. He has also totaled 10 k's and only given up nien hits, not too bad either. The small problem is the eight walks he has given up, which can't sit well in any ones stomach. The fact that he's been working on a new stance, reducing the height of the leg kick, might provide some validity with his strong pitching recently.

Before we buy into the recent, lets remember the past. In the last two seasons Willis has totaled approximately 58 innings, 35 strikeouts, 53 earned runs and 63 walks. With more walks than innings pitched and an earned run average of nearly 8.0 there has to be some question of whether or not he can be trusted at all.

I'm a strong believer of having a short memory, which is why I'll install some trust with Dontrelle but it won't be much. He is only 28 years old and has been the work horse for the '03 World Champion team. Maybe the the "D-Train" just lost his way and now he's back on track. We'll have to just wait and see. The one thing that is for sure is that he'll be on a short leash and could be pitching for the Mud Hens in no time.

Now's the time to ask yourself if Dontrelle deserves that fifth spot in the rotation?

1 comment:

  1. We have to remember this is still a pretty young player that at his age should just now be coming into his prime, I am very willing to give him another chance and I think the Tigers should as well. The walks are still the scary part, but if he gets a little confidence going I think they will come down.