H-Town Sports

Houston Sports Blog - Real sports cities have TWO Conference USA teams

Monday, May 08, 2006

Gallo-wed be Thy Name

Admittedly, Astros lefty specialist Mike Gallo is the focus of much ire on this site, generally following one of his numerous outings in which he is brought on to 'take advantage' of his lefty throwing motion by dominating the opposing team's left-handed power source in a late-inning situation, only to either walk the hitter on four cowardly pitches or give up a moonshot that disappears deep into the Space City night. No matter the ending, the always-spunky Gallo is sure to spike the resin bag, kick some dirt or cuss into his glove in a way that ensures you that even if he cannot pitch like a major-league reliever, he certainly can exhibit quirky behavior like a major-league reliever.

Since we last checked in on Michael Dwain, much has changed in Astro Land. Of most importance to The Rooster is the fact that the Astros 'other' lefty specialist, TrevEr Miller, landed on the disabled list with a left elbow sprain on April 19. Acquired by T-Poo as a free agent in a highly-publicized 'splash' during the Astros' thrilling 2006 offseason with some of the surplus revenue that was wisely not wasted on that washed up gascan Roger Clemens, TrevEr followed M.D. Gallo's lead masterfully, allowing nine hits, five runs (and two home runs) in three-plus innings of work, while walking more batters (three) than he struck out (two). Hopefully, Uncle Drayton has taken out a restraining order against TrevEr because it has been printed that T-Mill thinks he's about ready to re-toe the rubber at the Juice Box.

Since T-Mill departed for the infirmary, The Rooster has bravely borne the responsibility of 'lefty' specialist solely upon his shoulders. The results?

6 G 2 IP 5 hits 1 run 1 walk 2 K (including a dastardly whiff of Todd Helton Sunday)

Gallo's ERA has shrunk from a mediocre 12.46 to a miniscule 8.59 since April 24. OK, so that's still not that great. Let's delve deeper and reveal exactly why Gallo remains on the Astros' roster.

As the proverbial book says, numbers can be deceiving for relief pitchers early in the year. Let's face it, Gallo's job is not to win ERA crowns - it's to retire challenging hitters late in ballgames. So far in 2006, here's how MDG has fared against the most dangerous hitters he's seen:

Luis Gonzalez (0-1, walk)
Adam Dunn (1-1)
Todd Helton (1-2)
J. D. Drew (0-1)
Kenny Lofton (1-1)
Prince Fielder (1-1, double)
Geoff Jenkins (0-2)
Barry Bonds (1-1)
Nick Johnson (1-1)
Alfonso Soriano (0-1)

Total: 6-12 (.500 BAA)

OK, so he's had a couple of bad at-bats. Certainly, though, his reputed prowess agaisnt lefties remains clear: .400 BAA for lefties versus .500 BAA for righties. OK, so the average LH hitter is Ted Williams against Gallo, while the average RH hitter is apparently a cleanup hitter from the SNK Baseball Stars. Must be something else.

Maybe he is being utilized in a clever home/road platoon. Nope. Unfairly, the pressure of pitching in front of his tens of fans has obviously impacted his performance at home: .550 BAA at home v. a puny .308 on the road. That's not a typo, by the way - hitters are batting .550!!! at MMP against Gallo in 2006. But there's obviously some reason that Scrapper continues to trot this accelerant out to the mound every couple of nights...

Most importantly, considering his role as a situational reliever, let's look at his splits with runners on. Surely THAT's why Garner continues to bring this talentless biscuit into games:

Bases Empty: .455 BAA
Runners on: .444 BAA
RISP: .455 BAA

We'll keep digging, and we're open to your suggestions as to why Mike Gallo remains on a major-league roster. The numbers seem to indicate that MDG has compromising pictures of a high-level Astros exec working out with Kaz Tadano, but I'm sure we're missing something here.

2 Comments:

Blogger Tim said...

(Standing slowly and silently, then beginning a Hoosiers-esque slow clap that increases in intensity and is soon accompanied by tears slowly streaming down his face): Attaboy, Scott. Attaboy.

Mon May 08, 03:16:00 PM  
Blogger Ted Bosquez said...

SNK Baseball Stars - that brings back a few old memories - awesome!

Mon May 08, 05:10:00 PM  

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