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To Glavine or Not Glavine Against the Yankees

I’ve been a little preoccupied with real life the last several days so I haven’t been able to post. The real job and fatherhood have kept me busy. But since I have a few minutes now I figured why not chime in on some issues. So here we go.

Art Howe has opted to keep Tom Glavine on rotation to pitch against the Reds this week instead of altering the rotation to have Glavine pitch against the Yankees. I’ve spoken with many people who are upset about this. Whenever I ask them why they say something like “how can you not have your best pitcher pitch in such an important series?”. My next question, naturally, is why they think the Yankees series is so important. The answer is generally something lame like “they’re the best team in baseball” or something along the lines of trying to gain bragging rights in the city. These people are idiots.

Although Art Howe has made some questionable moves that has had fans calling for his head, this move is not one of them. Games against the Yankees (and, to a lesser extent, other non-division opponents) are just not as important as division games.

Think of it this way. With the Phillies playing Baltimore and the Marlins playing Tampa Bay this weekend it’s possible that the Mets could sweep a series and not move up at all in the standing. But a win against the Phillies on Monday would gain a full game in the standings against the division opponent. In the meantime, a loss to the Phillies would drop them another full game back. Clearly the Phillies games have a greater impact. So clearly Glavine should be kept on target to pitch to them.

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