Though he earned the win, Ryan Madson is still trying to prove himself worthy of the starting rotation.
Nothing has come easy for Phillies starting pitching.
The blasphemous idea of keeping Ryan Madson in the bullpen doesn’t seem quite so profane after another brief outing last night. Beerleaguer has always maintained Madson has a pitch selection hitters will figure out quickly. Sub-par fastball and plus change both come over the top. The curve, still a project pitch, must be easier to spot because of his delivery. Toss in suspect command, and it's just not enough.
There were other factors last night. Madson and Mike Lieberthal weren’t on the same page, and because of that, the game slowed down. During the telecast, the broadcast crew said Lieberthal is not used to asking for the curveball quite as much in Madson’s new starting role. It also appeared that Madson was bothered when calls weren’t going his way.
In five innings, Madson gave up 10 hits, 4 runs and a walk to lower his ERA to 8.05. As a result, Madson and Gavin Floyd, the two experiments in the starting rotation, have given the Phillies similar results, but in slightly different ways. With Floyd, he cannot find command of his fastball and does not trust his curve. With Madson, hitters appear to be figuring out his pitches. Both do not seem to have enough pitches in their repertoire to go deep into games, and they have not been able to pitch out of trouble.
Comments in the previous thread wondered if it was time to consider moving Ryan Franklin into the starting rotation. One response said that would be "a recipe for disaster."
Though Floyd and Madson are still baking in the oven, we’ve tasted some bitter dough.