Can The Cardinals Please Stop Starting Jake Westbrook?

To state the completely obvious, there’s a problem lately when Jake Westbrook pitches.

Jake WestbrookYesterday’s buzzkill of a game squashed the high of Thursday’s extra-inning comeback walk-off win over the Pirates and Kolten Wong’s major league debut as Westbrook gave up seven runs and the Cards managed only two hits in the 7-0 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field.

It was just another bad outing in a string of bad performances from Westbrook.

In three outings this month (only two starts, since he pitched in relief of Shelby Miller’s two-pitch outing on Aug. 7) he’s given up 20 earned runs (21 total) in 16 1/3 innings pitched on 25 hits with 12 walks. He’s faced the Reds, Dodgers and Cubs in those three outings, and they’re hitting .368/.463/.471 off him. In searching for some sort of silver lining, he’s only given one home run. At least he’s had 22 ground-outs, which obviously are what a sinker-ball pitcher needs to succeed. Of course, it’s the non-outs that cause all the trouble.

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