Here’s a snyopsis of what Lieber brought to the table yesterday from good ol’ Marcus Hayes’ recap of the Phils-Reds spring training game:
He bore down and pitched two scoreless innings against Cincinnati, giving up three hits with three strikeouts among 41 pitches. He effectively used all four of his pitches, and his slider was occasionally nasty.
“I’m just watching the catcher’s mitt, just getting ready. Pitching. Preparing for Opening Day,” Lieber said.
Apparently the man was sharp. He needed only 41 pitches to go 3 innings, bringing back memories of various points in his 2005 campaign with the Phillies when he looked like an all-star on the mound. If Lieber can continue to perform like this in the fair weather in Clearwater, why would we want to trade him for bullpen relief? At that point we should tell Adam Eaton that his services would best be used out behind the centerfield wall.
You don’t trade a starting pitcher if he reclaims his form. You use that guy to win ballgames. Just don’t ask him to carpool.