Mitch Talbot, the Indian's right handed rookie sensation, has been surprising everybody this season. Literally, EVERYBODY. No one could have anticipated the impact Mitch would have on this Indians team in 2010. I think it's time the guy earned a little bit of praise (well, from me anyway).
The 26 year old Utah native has caused quite a stir so far. Acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays for Kelly Shoppach in December 2009, Talbot arrived in Cleveland with little-to-no fuss. It seemed most fans had never heard of him, and why should they have? He hardly played at all for the Rays, some relief here, a start in Baltimore there. So it was hardly surprisingly he didn't receive much attention when he was traded to us. However, Talbot entered spring training this year with an outside shot at making the rotation - he had a chance at least. He was up against Aaron Laffey, David Huff, as well as Carlos Carrasco, and proceeded to beat all of them, and earned himself a place in the starting rotation. And he's been fantastic on a poor Indians team ever since, shocking all along the way.
Talbot currently sits at 6-3 with a 3.73 ERA, with 24 walks and 24 strikeouts. I know, looks nothing special right? Well the key difference between Mitch and the rest of his team mates, not to mention his fellow rookie pitchers around the league, is that despite his less-than-impressive numbers, he is getting the job done (currently tied for second place in wins in the AL). He hasn't been fantastic but he has delivered every single start, and has produced the goods in the majors where few others on this Indians' team have (Masterson, Huff etc). He isn't dominant but he is efficient, and we can't really ask much more from him at this stage in his career than that. Many fans have appropriately dubbed him as "The Fury", and rightfully so. He is already being linked to potential trades, as his stock is rising with every appearance. It would be nice if we can keep hold of him for longer than a few months! If Talbot can continue this form, he's set to be a solid middle of the rotation guy for years to come.
If there is nothing else to cheer for in 2010, at least he's giving fans something exciting to watch, in what looks to be another lost season of mediocrity for the Tribe. Keep going Mitch, and long may your success in Cleveland continue.
Thanks for reading.