I used to have faith in him. In fact, I’ve often bragged about Texas Rangers left-hander Derek Holland after one of his complete game shutouts. I said during one of my podcasts, “now Derek has it figured out. We’ll really get to see what he’s made of now.”
One start later he gives up five runs and I’m left wondering if I’m the jinx. So I decide to say nothing and wait to see what Holland will do. Another complete game shutout. Maybe this is the time.
But it’s not.
Derek Holland has been given chance after chance after chance to let the Rangers know that he has finally gotten out of his own head. His struggles that have forced him out of games before the sixth inning, and at one point even before he finished the second inning, may be the one thing that sends him out of Arlington.
You either love this young man or you hate him. There really is no in between. There’s no question he’s a talented young pitcher. There’s also no question in my mind that if he were ever able to really figure out why he struggles so badly that he could be one of the 10 best pitchers in baseball.
I still believe that.
The only problem is, I’m not sure Holland believes that about himself. One has to wonder if Mike Maddux is pulling what’s left of his hair out of his head.
How long will this team wait for their starter to get it right? How long will they allow Derek to struggle before they permanently pull the ball out of his hand and either banish him to the bullpen or look for a trade candidate who’s willing to take him?
That question is one that is being asked around a lot of water coolers around the North Texas area. Everyone wants to know when the Rangers will say, “enough is enough.”
Will the real Derek Holland ever come to light or will it take a National League team to really find his potential? It would seem he would have more success in a pitcher’s park like PETCO Park in San Diego than he would at Rangers’ Ballpark in Arlington.
He’s had his chance to prove himself and hasn’t shown this team or its management that he can be counted on.
No matter how much some fans may like him, the Rangers can no longer trust him to do his job.
While the trade may not come this season, don’t be surprised if it’s something they approach during the off season.
Other notes …
Colby Lewis struggled on Tuesday night against the Boston Red Sox, giving up seven runs in just six innings of work including two home runs to Adrian Gonzalez, arguably one of the most dangerous hitters in the game today.
The bullpen wasn’t much better.
The Rangers have to hope this is a momentary lapse of command for Lewis. They don’t want him, Holland, and Matt Harrison struggling at the same time. That won’t bode well for their AL West lead.