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Rotating between the minors and the bigs throughout the course of the season, Nick Blackburn has failed to solidify a spot in the Twins starting rotation during the season.
Therefore, he should be spending the postseason pitching out of the bullpen, but in all likelihood, the Twins playoff starting rotation will most likely be Carl Pavano, Francisco Liriano, Brian Duensing, and Nick Blackburn.
But does Blackburn deserve to be there?
Led by Carl Pavano's 17 wins (scary thought), all season long the Twins have opted for a five-man rotation, but all signs point towards a four-man rotation, once the playoffs begins. However, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire should think twice about pitching Blackburn in the playoffs.
Although Blackburn won six of his first nine games, while being extremely effective, he's since pitched poorly, while spending some time in the minors.
Since being recalled from the minors on Aug. 21, despite having a losing record of 2-3, he has lowered his ERA from 6.49 to 5.43. But the Twins should not bank on Blackburn in the playoffs.
They can ill afford to rely on someone who struggled during "meaningless" regular-season games, leaving the uncertainty of whether or nor, the pressure of pitching in the postseason will get to Blackburn.
In one postseason start, Blackburn failed to make it through six innings of work.
Expectations are raised during the postseason.
With the shaky season, Blackburn has had, going 9-10 with a 5.43 ERA and a 1.49 WHIP, it doesn't appear Blackburn will be able to meet those expectations.
And for the team that is currently one of the best in the majors right now, will soon be experiencing another disappointing end to their season.