Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Blake Hawksworth Hoping To Make The Cut

It's easy to look menacing against an old guy with a quiver of arrows.

Saw this tidbit on the AP wire, which impressed me that Blake Hawksworth, he of 75 MLB-game experience, with a 203 ERA+ his first year and a 79 ERA+ his second, is just trying to make the best out of his Dodgers spring training invitation (no link):

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) - Blake Hawksworth knows he's in no position to make any demands about what role he'll have this year on the Los Angeles Dodgers pitching staff.

"After playing eight years in the minors, I'm not dumb enough to have a preference," Hawksworth said. "I just want to be on the team."

Hawksworth is part of a large group of relievers in camp vying for a spot on the Dodgers' opening day roster. If he makes the club, it will probably be in long relief.

Manager Don Mattingly said Hawksworth also could develop into a setup reliever, a role he had with the St. Louis Cardinals last year.

Acquired in an offseason trade with the Cardinals, Hawksworth is coming off a year in which he appeared in 45 games, starting eight. The 27-year-old right-hander went 4-8 with a 4.98 ERA a year ago. In 2009, working strictly as a reliever, Hawksworth was 4-0 with a 2.03 ERA.

"Out of the pen, he's more aggressive and attacking and we kind of think that's where he fits best," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "I know he's started a lot in the past and I don't want to rule him out as a possible guy who could do that, but I look at him more as a reliever." [...]

Mattingly said the Dodgers are excited about Hawksworth's velocity out of the bullpen.

"We got the reports out of the minor leagues that this guys is throwing 90-91 with a good changeup. But he was like 95-96 out of the pen and with a filthy change-up. We think he's going to be a solid part of that bullpen depth."

(There is more on Hawksworth on Dodgers.com from Kenny G, who references Hawksworth's toughness after getting hit by a Sam Fuld line drive last year, requiring 40 stitches to the mouth. "I'll face hitters, same as always," said Hawksworth. "It's part of the game. You can't pitch cautiously. It split my lip, knocked my teeth, but it could have been worse. I saw it, but it was too fast to do anything about it. They said I had a mild concussion. I did lose consciousness for a moment." Yikes.)

I like to see players like Hawksworth who come to spring training with positive attitudes, particularly those attempting to overcome adversities of the past. Reading these two pieces has me pulling for Hawksworth. (And, I tend to be compelled by players with attractive sisters. Erin Hawksworth, ladies and gentlemen.)

Blake Hawksworth photo: Stephen Dunn / Getty Images. Erin Hawksworth photo swiped from here


spank said...

Wow!! Look at them titties!!

Feel better,Saxy?

Eric Karros said...

"I tend to be compelled by players with attractive sisters."

Yup, those are attractive sisters, alright

Steve Sax said...

Hey now

Pistol Pete Reiser said...

Gotta get milk again...