This situation reminds me of the scene in Wedding Crashers where Owen Wilson is trying to convince Vince Vaughn's character to stick with him over breakfast. In this case Brewers fans are Vince, Trevor Hoffman is Owen Wilson.
'I'll stick it out with you because you're desperate. I'm gonna try to give you a little more time, because somebody can't close. Here's what's going to happen, Tanto, Kemo Sabe's gonna have some flavor, I'm gonna chose not to eat with you, I'd like to recharge my batteries and shut down the engines and get myself back to neutral. When the meal is over I will talk to you, I don't want to get into what happened last night cause it's only going to make me mad, let's get through today, let's keep our eye on the prize, let's focus and let's close some games.'
Sigh....so with that, the popular topic in Brewer nation late last night and into this morning has been whether or not the Brewers need to make a switch when it comes to their closer. And after the year Hoffman had last year, that notion would seem as odd as me being nervous for a Bucks game at 10 in the morning. But here we are. Now I was as frustrated/angry/bitter as anyone was who watched the whole game last night. I was frangritter in other words. But I have to say I was shocked at what bloggers on JSONLINE and facebookers were saying after the Cedeno home run to tie it at 3. People were spitting straight venom on a guy who was 37/41 in save opportunities with an ERA well under 2. Good thing Trevor's too old for that bookface otherwise he might feel pretty down this morning! Nevertheless I'd be lying if it weren't a bit perplexing to watch a guy who was so crafty last year throw 83 mph 'heat' right over the middle the plate time after time when his changeup is his money pitch. Not including the intentional walk last night he threw 20 pitches. 3 changeups. And when your fastball is as pedestrian as Hoffman's is, it's basically like throwing batting practice when he's not locating it. Hell I think I could go deep make contact strikeout and cry if you're throwing 83. But the problem is Trevor's not pitching to me, so something's got to give.
Now while a lot of aforementioned people are calling for Hoffman to be replaced or cut blah blah blah, I'm not ready to panic just yet. And I did a little research to validate my faith. I hit up 'Baseball Reference'* and looked at Hoffman's monthly splits, and what I found was that during his career, in his team's first 20 games he is 51/64 in save opportunities. A percentage of 79%. All other games? 542/602. 90 percent. What this tells me is that Trevor simply struggles in April, which is something Brewers fans didn't deal with last year because he was injured. Bottom line is the dude's a hall of famer. There's no way he goes from dominant season last year, to totally useless in the span of 5 months. Then again when I was 24 I could drink a case of beer and be fine and since I turned 25 I can't drink two beers without falling asleep. So take it for what it's worth. And while Hells Bells has gone from 'game over' music to 'nervous/sweating' music, Hoffman deserves at least a couple more weeks until there is a serious conversation about his role on this team. Bonus word: off
*If you've never been to Baseball Reference, navigate at your own risk. It is the most detailed/nerdiest baseball stat site ever invented. I once went there to look up the career stats of Ben Sheets before a fantasy baseball draft and found that I could not only get his year by year breakdown but also how Ben pitched each month, day of the week, and when we wore boxers instead of briefs. One click leads to another and all of a sudden 3 days have gone by and you haven't slept or bathed. So while doing research there I suggest the buddy system. Baseball Referencing 101.