There's been a lot of discussion recently on baseball's "unwritten" rules, thanks to the Dallas Braden-Alex Rodriguez dustup a while back. Stay off my mound and all that.
My question - what are the unwritten rules within a single-team framework?
I watched Scott Olsen look like hell last night and figured it was just one of those nights. It goes back to my theory that every starter, even the Roy Halladays and Ubaldo Jimenezs of the world, are going to have a handful of starts where it just isn't there.
Olsen had been so good for a long stretch. Last night, it just wasn't there. I'm not going to curse on Scott Olsen because he's been a lot better this season than anyone had a right to expect.
Then we learn he left with shoulder tightness, in a shoulder that was surgically repaired no less. Then I do my morning reading and learn from various outlets that Steve McCatty and Ivan Rodriguez could tell in the bullpen Olsen wasn't right.
So why in the name of Dr. Andrews was he on the mound to start the game? At what point does someone say, "Sorry, son. You ain't going tonight." Is it Rodriguez's job to tell Riggleman to go to plan B (Batista, we assume)? Is it McCatty's? Is it Olsen's?
Or do those "unwritten" rules say you just keep your mouth shut? Rub some dirt on it and go out and suck it up?
If so, someone needs to take an eraser and rewrite the unwritten rules.
It isn't so much about one game. Yeah, sure, the team is in a tailspin. That 20-15 thing seems like ages ago. It would indeed be nice to string a few wins together again.
This is more about the player, a still-young pitcher who should have convinced people by now he does have a little upside. He's less than a year removed from shoulder surgery.
If something isn't right, DON'T SEND HIM OUT THERE.
Unrelated, a friend put this on my Facebook page yesterday. It's pretty much a must-have. I just hope the past tense thing remains accurate.