Back in Spring Training Kenny wanted to put Brandon McCarthy in the rotation, and give the starters a break from their extended workloads. Kenny was told no such thing was needed. He's not so sure now:
"Our guys won't say it, but I'll say it for them. The intensity and the stress they had to pitch through, it takes a little bit more of a toll on you. In our ballpark, which is the Coors Field of the American League, the difference in the strike zone, if you're a fatigued pitcher, is this much. If you're able to get down in the strike zone, on a more consistent basis, the residual effects if you don't can result in more balls flying out of the ballpark. I don't know. In a nutshell, in hindsight, I learned a lot. I learned, again, the value of ... to quantify to a greater degree what stressful innings and playoff innings can do to pitchers. That's why it pained me to hear about and read about some of these guys not pitching up to their level this year or carrying their load, because a lot of people forgot what they did last year. To their credit, none of them wanted to go to a six-man rotation to start the season. They took the ball each and every time, with the exception of a couple of times here and there, and they battled through some soreness and some fatigue and competed and almost got us there again."
Update [2006-10-1 14:1:48 by thewizardsofoz]:
"People will say it?s an excuse, whether I say if it is or isn?t. It definitely takes its toll on the body. That?s why you tip your cap to teams that go back to back. It doesn?t happen too often. To do it, what you have to put together mentally and physically, it?s amazing."Vazquez's take:
"A six-man rotation is for me just a lot of time without pitching. It's especially true with all those days off [in April]. Sometimes you would go without pitching for a week. I think we all had a routine before. So, personally, I don't think that would work. I feel stronger with four days because my routine, I've always done that. In Montreal, especially my last three or four years, I was always every five days, every five days. In Arizona, I was basically every five days. I've always been part of that routine."
And more Kenny:
"Our pitchers and the coaching staff were against that. I probably would have, looking back on it now, brought that up again for discussion."Do you think he could explore that option next season?