Baseball Prospectus' Will Carroll has a rational and resonable expalnation for Mark Prior's lost velocity. This from Carroll's column today:
Mark Prior was also throwing a simulated game in Arizona, still searching for his lost velocity. Reports from observers say that once again, Prior threw well and without pain, but lacked the pop. This time, my observer had an idea why--“he’s throwing scared.” If the problem is mental rather than physical, then it can more easily be fixed. Pitchers coming back from injury often have similar problems letting it go. Remember Johan Santana in the first month of 2004? Prior’s 65 pitch outing in the rookie league is likely to be followed by one more start at the same level before heading out for his expected two game rehab stint.
I have wondered in this space about the Prior's mental makeup. Keep in mind that everything came very easy for Mark Prior. Up until the Bartman incident he had led a charmed life. That all seemed to change that night. Since that point things have been tough for #22. It wouldn't surprise me if "he's throwing scared" right now. Hopefully Carroll's observer is correct.
Now the second of the DL triplets. Kerry Wood's stiffness in his right shoulder. Carroll told us this in Under The Knife:
The Cubs are going to push Kerry Wood back after his shoulder got “cranky.” You can tell Wood’s a new father given that description. There’s no new damage and, given the proper rest, this should get better with time.
Because the two players are so over hyped and the team is in a death spiral that looks like the 2002 team, these routine recovery setbacks are being overblown by many (including this page). With the season already lost I'd like to see the team take their time with both Wood and Prior and do what's best for the rest of their careers (whether with this club or not).
Protest Set for Saturday @ 11:30
On Monday I detailed Cub fan Bill's protest that is scheduled for Saturday at 11:30. Just to set the record straight, Bill is not affiliated with this crappy/unpopular blog. He's a fan, just like all of us, who is frustrated and wants to do something. You can't blame a guy for trying.
I got another e-mail from Cub fan Bill who is leading the Protest on Saturday. Here is what he had to say:
Just showing up and helping us with the cause would really help, we're not even going to the game, we're just protesting the Tribune Co. in front of Wrigley (big red marquee) at 11:30am. We are protesting the lack of vision and forethought in putting a world series team together for the past 98 years. 25 of it under tribune co. ownership! We still love the cubs, but we're tired of the Tribune Co. taking us for granted. This is not a boycott, but instead, a protest. A peaceful one at that. If you have any other way to help out, let me know. Some will disagree with me and i respect your opinions, but this is my little effort for what it's worth. Feel free to contact me for info.
Thanks for your support.
Help spread the word.
Again if any of you are interested please e-mail Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org.