Monday, April 25, 2011

The Curious Case of Oriole Reliever Mike Gonzalez

When reliever Mike Gonzalez signed with the Orioles before last season, I thought it was a decent signing at the time despite the money involved.

He had a solid track record in the National League with Pittsburgh and Atlanta, so one would think he certainly would be integral part of the Baltimore bullpen.

As we all know, from the start of Spring Training until 2/3 of the way into the 2010 season, Gonzalez was awful. He was signed by the Orioles as a closer, and sadly he didn't close much. I don't think he has even saved a game with the Orioles since he signed his John Hancock.

I was at Opening Day in 2010 where Gonzalez was literally booed off the mound and remarked to a fan next to me who was bashing him, "um, I think he's hurt".

I added (and paraphrasing), "I have watched too much baseball over the years and I have seen this guy on the mound. Something isn't right."

He was out of sorts in Spring Training and then was disastrous in the first week of the season. Of course, his had a small part that led to an infamous and horrendous stretch for the Orioles in 2010.

Gonzalez, in the end, was hurt. After working his way back in the minors, he came back towards the end of last season in a non-pressurized role in the bullpen and was decent.

Now that we are in 2011, Gonzalez looks awful as ever. He says he's healthy in a Baltimore Sun interviewHe says he's healthy in a Baltimore Sun interview and wants to pull his weight on the team.

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