The Study of Sports blog has a brutal little letter to Mike Hampton.
Sorry Mike, but you need to go now. Well, maybe you can stick around as a pinch hitter, because Houston needs any help they can get at the plate. But as a pitcher, you’re just not good anymore. And to be fair, you haven’t been very good since you took all that money to go to Colorado eight years ago. But this is just getting embarrassing now, isn’t it?
The start you just made on Wednesday in Chicago should be your last, at least for this club. Because if the Astros have any fantasies of making the playoffs this season, they can’t keep running you out to the mound every fifth day. The Astros can’t keep throwing away starts on you when they sit on the fringe of contention in the NL Central. Cecil Cooper did it last season with Brandon Backe when he was clearly in over his head, so hopefully history doesn’t repeat itself and you’ll find yourself out of the Astro rotation...
...And yes, anyone can see that Brian Moehler and Russ Ortiz aren’t exactly throwing lights-out baseball for the Astros either. They’re terrible too. But Mike, you’re clearly the guy now. There’s no getting around the fact that you’re the worst starting pitcher for the Astros right now. So if they insist on playing for this season and making a run at the playoffs, they’re going to have to remove the weakest link from that rotation, especially now that they have a viable alternative. Bud Norris made his major league debut today, coming in to relieve you, and he was quite impressive. He’s your replacement in the rotation. And if it turns out that Roy Oswalt has to miss two or three starts, well then the Astros need to bring up Yorman Bazardo from AAA Round Rock. He can’t be any worse than you.
Whew. Unfortunately, it's debatable on just whom fills the role of The Worst Starting Pitcher For The Astros Right Now. But this seems a little over-the-top.