Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hennessey 

Bad Brad has done it again. He's gone and locked Good Brad in the closet. Last night against the Dodgers, it was 2.2 IP, 6 hits, 5 runs, 3 walks, 66 pitches, and shower time.

When Hennessey starts, it's usually one extreme or the other, as I noted a couple weeks ago.

If you weren't following the comment chatter on that post, here are a couple excerpts from people smarter than me. Uh, I mean I.

Snow Leopard wrote: "The numbers show that Hennessey is actually unusually unpredictible/flaky/variable." He proceeded to list a chart of all Giants pitchers who've started 10+ games since 1996. Of the 26 pitchers, Hennessey has the greatest standard deviation in his game score. In non-statgeek terms: he's all over the map.

Later in the thread, El Tipo de los Pantalones wrote: "Hennessey is leading all major league starters (50+ IP) with a 'flake factor' of 0.301 according to Baseball Prospectus. (Don't ask me how flake factor is calculated exactly.) Some good pitchers are in the Top 15 with him (Dontrelle, Mulder, Buehrle, Zambrano, Peavy); some not so much (Drese, Sele, Jennings). Clemens is the least flaky pitcher in the game by this stat, but many of the people in the Bottom 10 are consistently bad (Waechter, Russ Ortiz, Luke Hudson, Wandy Rodriguez). Oddly enough, Correia is fifth on the 'least flaky' list."

Shawn Estes was flaky, too, but with Shawn it was all about the one bad inning. Tomko is the same way. With Hennessey, it's usually el stinko right out of the chute. At least there's no tease. I'm not sure if this is better for the team, but it's more psychologically tolerable for the fans, for some reason.

I'm fascinated by Hennessey in the same way I was fascinated by Kurt Cobain. First, I recognized his inherent talent and was ecstatic when it shone through. Second, I wanted him to do well and paid good money to see him perform. Third, I had a certain amount of empathy for his fuck-ups.

If we can only keep Hennessey away from the pernicious influence of Courtney Love Tomko, he'll have a standing chance to make something of himself.


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