10 Washed-Up Pitchers Who Are Somehow Still Pitching
Making fun of Jamie Moyer's age is too easy.
It's fun, too.
Let me put it this way how old Moyer is—he went to the same high school as Charlie Chaplin, who was a freshman when Moyer was a senior.
Moyer leads this cavalcade of pitchers who somehow continue to find a way to take the mound despite their advancing age, diminishing velocity and/or fleeting stardom.
Perhaps these wily vets have found the secret location of the fountain of youth, but more likely their arms are held together with Scotch Tape and Big League Chew and they're willing to sign for really cheap.
The good news for batters is that if they hit you with a fastball, it'll probably feel like they hit you with a Nerf Ball. The bad news, they're still somehow, amazingly, more likely to get you out.
1. Jamie Moyer
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Moyer made his big league debut when he was 23. He could have pitched when he was younger, but baseball wasn't invented yet.
Moyer was adequate as "the other guy" in the Phillies rotation last year and might have earned himself another shot after going 9-9 with a 4.84 ERA.
He's recently pitched a session for the San Diego Padres, who are coincidentally looking to add AARP as a sponsor.
2. Carlos Silva
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At 32, Carlos Silva is the puppy of this list.
However, he's one immensely rich puppy thanks to perhaps the worst contract in the history of contracts.
The desperate Seattle Mariners signed the former Twin in 2008 to a $46 million contract after a "stellar" 13-14 season with a minuscule 4.19 ERA.
More amazingly, the Mariners were able to pawn Silva off to the Cubs, where he quickly wore out his welcome.
After taking an extended vacation in 2011, Silva was signed to a minor-league contract with the Red Sox, where he's sure to be a fan favorite.
3. Erik Bedard
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Erik Bedard has been about as healthy as the economy for, well...pretty much his entire career.
Bedard hasn't made more than 30 starts in a season since 2006 and has never pitched more than 200 innings.
Besides annually maxing out his healthcare deductible, Bedard has also enjoyed some modest success, prompting the once again rebuilding Pittsburgh Pirates to take their turn to roll the dice.
4. Livan Hernandez
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When I turned to CNN last spring and they were talking about "trimming the fat" in Washington, I assumed the Nationals had cut Livan Hernandez.
The Nationals didn't and he thanked them with a 8-13 season.
While he doesn't currently have a home, it appears the rest of the league has been playing hot potato with the Nationals for Hernandez' services, so he'll probably just end up re-signing there at some point.
In fairness to Hernandez he was the World Series MVP—when FDR was president.
5. Miguel Batista
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Forty-year-old Miguel Batista has played for so many teams, that I could list them but it'd be easier for me to list the teams he didn't play for.
The good news for Batista is that he's only a couple teams away from completing his collection of MLB team hats. Rumor is he'll have a bathroom stall in Cooperstown named after him if he can accomplish that task.
Despite a 101-112 record and a 4.48 ERA, the Mets saw enough in Batista to continue his storied career with another stint in Gotham.
6. Arthur Rhodes
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Most baseball players relish the day when they can sit down with their grandkids and tell them how they once pitched in a World Series.
Arthur Rhodes can do that now.
The 42-year-old lefty didn't allow a run this postseason for the St. Louis Cardinals, and he's drawing interest from a few teams for his self proclaimed final season.
After a terrible start to his career, Arthur Rhodes should be a pitching coach for a rookie league somewhere, but here he is, still chugging away in the big leagues.
7. Jake Peavy
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I know the saying goes, "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me." What about fool me three times?
It's getting close to being spring in Chicago, meaning it's that annual time that White Sox fans will soon be hearing the Kenny Williams spin on how great Jake Peavy looks.
I'm guessing they've learned counting on Peavy is kind of like counting on Obama to win a re-election.
I won't say Peavy is injury prone, but let's put it this way—rumor has it Peavy has been asking Erik Bedard for longevity advice.
8. Tim Wakefield
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It's safe to say Tim Wakefield will never, ever throw his arm out.
The quintessential active knuckleballer—take that R.A. Dickey!—has perfected the art of throwing so amazingly slow that he lulls opposing hitters to sleep before blowing them away with his dominator—a 60-mph fastball.
Currently a free agent, the Red Sox and Cubs have both shown interest in Wakefield.
In unrelated news, MLB has announced that batting helmets are now optional whenever Wakefield pitches.
9. Mark Prior
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OK, so he's not in the majors, but Mark Prior is still pitching somewhere.
Actually, his agent is probably doing more "pitching" than him, but he's at least doing some—24 minor-league innings over the last two seasons to be exact.
Most recently of the Yankees, prior has also been under contract with the San Diego Padres and Texas Rangers since his last MLB appearance in 2006.
If ever given another chance, Prior would be wise to follow the path of fellow "Young Gun" Kerry Wood who used the time-tested "Washed-Up Antidote" of converting to a reliever to revive a pitching career.
10. Darren Oliver
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OK, so Darren Oliver isn't really "washed up;" in fact, he's the opposite of "washed up"—uh, so is he "washed down"?
Anyway, I hope whatever coach said way back at the Dawn of Time, "You know Darren, you look like a starter to me" has long since hung up his cleats.
Oliver has suddenly become the Roy Hobbs of relief pitchers after an inauspicious start to his career—his first 15 seasons.
Unfortunately for the 41-year-old Oliver, he could pitch until he's 60 and never get his career ERA below 4.00.
Does it really matter when he's getting $4 million from the Blue Jays when most guys his age are planning their move to Florida?
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