Lou Piniella Turns to Situational Lefty in the First Inning
May 3, 2008
(St. Louis, MO) – Shortly after losing an extra inning heartbreaker to the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs manager Lou Piniella was peppered with questions about a controversial decision he made in the first inning. With two outs, and before he’d given up a hit, Rich Hill was removed from the game. Why was the decision controversial?
Obviously because Piniella had decided to start the game with a situational left-handed reliever.
There could be little other explanation for Piniella pulling Hill after only 2/3 of an inning. Hill must have done his job in short relief, and Piniella was ready to move on to another reliever. But why would Piniella start the game with a short, situational reliever?
“Look, I know it’s not a decision that looks great on paper, and especially now that we lost the game,” Piniella said. “But I am the manager. I thought Rich Hill was the guy to get those first two outs in the first inning, and I was right.”
Still, fans and observors have been troubled by the decision. To make matters worse, Piniella used situational lefty Hill to face primarily right-handed hitters.
“Yeah, I know that typically you bring in short relief later in the game, but Lou is inovative,” Hill said of his manager. “Doing it in the first inning really throws off the opposition, and gives us the chance to really use up our bullpen in the first game of the series [against the Cardinals]. Wait. That’s not, like, a good thing, is it?”
(In case it isn’t painfully obvious, the Brickyard is a PARODY news publication, so accounts and quotes are FICTIONAL. Lou isn’t so stupid as to start the game with a situational lefty. He’s simply stupid enough to pull his starting pitcher after 2/3 of an inning, one run, four walks, and no hits. No one should construe this fake article as being fact. Additionally, any similarity between this and other publications is entirely coincidental. Don’t sue. We don’t have money anyway.)