From respected news publications to blogs to message boards, the consensus on Carlos Silva amounts to one thing and one thing only: he sucks.
Yes, at 0-2 with a 6.35 ERA, Silva is having a tough go of it for a second straight season. Unfortunately, your Seattle Mariners are in a tough position when it comes to handling their burly Venezuelan starting pitcher.
First off, there’s the whole contract issue.
Not unlike the situation surrounding another contractual obligation in the form of catcher Kenji Johjima, the M’s have handcuffed themselves to Silva by agreeing to pay him $12 million per year over four years (and we are currently two weeks into year two of this increasingly misguided deal). You can’t just release a guy owed that much in the way of dollars and cents, and no other team would be willing to trade for him at this point, so in essence you’re stuck with him. That’s problem No. 1.
Problem No. 2 is the fact that the team really doesn’t have any rotation replacement options right now for Silva.
With fifth starter Ryan Rowland-Smith succumbing to injury in the first week of the season, the M’s have already handed the ball to 30-year-old rookie/de facto starter Chris Jakubauskas.
So who would take Silva’s place if the team were to send him to the pen, place him on the DL, or just flat-out let him go? Miguel Batista is the only person capable of starting currently in the Mariners’ bullpen, but he’s a lateral move at best.
At Triple-A Tacoma, the M’s have a staff full of journeymen, fledgling prospects, and Quad-A fillers who aren’t necessarily worthy of a promotion. Andrew Baldwin, a 26-year-old right-hander, would have to be the most deserving option at 1-1 with a 1.86 ERA. Other options might include lefty Garrett Olson, obtained from Baltimore in the offseason, or righty Gaby Hernandez, acquired from Florida in the Arthur Rhodes deal last season.
Not exactly an overwhelming cast of fill-ins, if you ask me.
Which means that for the foreseeable future, the M’s will have to trot Silva out to the bump every fifth day, cross their fingers, and hope for the best. Let’s just hope he can turn it around.