Just a few weeks ago, we were speculating what could be wrong with Randy Wolf. In his first start against Cincinnati on April 3, he allowed six runs and ten hits over four innings. His next start against Chicago was shaky, too; Wolf went six innings, allowing nine hits and another six runs (two earned). Wolf lost both games. It wasn’t a pretty start. As of April 9, Wolf’s ERA stood at a disappointing 7.20.
Since then, though, Wolf has been stellar. He rebounded against Pittsburgh on the 14th, striking out ten (ten!). He didn’t give up a run in that start or his next against Philadelphia, a strong offensive club. Against Philly, Wolf went another six innings with five strikeouts. He followed that up with a gem against Houston on April 24, throwing eight innings and allowing only one run. His ERA stands at 2.64, and he’s got a 3-2 record.
That sets the table for today, when Wolf faces off against the Astros again, this time in Houston. Wolf usually does well against the Astros (career: 3.27 ERA, 70:29 K:BB).
Whatever adjustment Wolf and Rick Kranitz hammered out is obviously working. The stars are aligned for another big game for Wolf, which (if it happens) would be Wolf’s fourth quality start in six outings.
It’s kind of interesting, though; Wolf has been pitching for the Brewers for over a year, and we still have no idea what to expect from him. We know what kind of tosser he is: a fly-ball pitcher that looks for contact and doesn’t issue many walks. But as far as what to expect on a daily basis, we’re still scratching our heads.
It’s like that for some guys in baseball. What makes some guys just so dominant against some teams and not others? If you can figure that out, the Baltimore Orioles (0-14 against Boston’s Jon Lester) would love to know.
Randy Wolf has no doubt put together a great string of games in April of this year. But it’s early, and Brewers fans are still waiting for the real Randy Wolf to stand up. Is it the Randy Wolf from the first half of 2010 (5-7, 4.92 ERA) or the second (8-5, 3.56 ERA)?