Prior to last night, here were Odalis Perez's last three games, and the tough-luck results:
5/11: 7.0 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 1 BB, 2 K; Royals lose 2-1
5/5: 6.0 IP, 4 R, 7 H, 2 BB, 0 K; Royals lose 7-5
4/30: 6.0 IP, 3 R, 10 H, 1 BB, 4 K; Royals lose 3-1
He seemed cursed. But then last night:
6.0 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 BB, 4 K; Royals win 4-3
Before the season, when baseball's Pollyannas -- among whom IDWT counts itself -- map out best-case scenarios, few would have envisioned much better out of Perez than he's shown so far. Four of his nine starts have been quality, and he's yet to give up more than four runs in any outing. Granted, he lasted just an inning and a third one of those times -- thus the 5.29 ERA -- but he's gone at least five innings in all his other starts. Even better, he's pitched through six in his last five games. This may not seem like much, but consider this: until last night, the mighty, mighty Yankees -- mighty still only because they use a NASA-sized budget to operate a baseball team -- had no one who could match Perez's consistency. Only three of their pitchers, in fact, had even started five games, and two of them were Kei Igawa -- now in the minors -- and Darrell Rasner.
So, the best we can hope for right now is a trade, Perez for someone, anyone who has flashed any potential. The urgency of this situation cannot be overstated. I've been secretly hoping for a trade for the last three weeks, because this -- whatever it is Perez is doing -- can't possibly keep up.
Or -- because we have sworn ourselves to optimism, we're obligated to ask -- can it?