Ross Detwiler has been one of the more curious cases for the Nats pitching staff in recent years. The former 6t overall pick was supposed to be great and drive the rotation. Instead, the Nats have gotten a suitcase, moving from MLB to AA and back, from the mound to the bullpen and back.
Still, every season has been an improvement for Detwiler, with 2011 being his most successful year yet.
He started the season off in AAA-Syracuse, earning a call-up early in the year. Once he came up to the big club, he and Tom Gorzelanny played some musical chairs, but Detwiler won the spot in the starting rotation in the end.
Detwiler finished with a 4-5 record with a 3.00 ERA in 15 games for the Nationals. While not terribly impressive numbers, it shows the continuous incline from a 5.00 ERA in 2009 and a 4.25 ERA in 2010.
Among the areas Detwiler can improve more is his control. A 2.05 strikeout per walk ratio isn’t going to cut it, even if he won’t be relied on as much in a rotation that includes Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann.
There was a time when Detwiler was thought of as the future “big gun” of the rotation, but that isn’t the case anymore. He’s going to have to work even harder now that Zimmermann and Strasburg are in the mix.
Still, if the trend continues, Detwiler should be coming into his own soon. He showed more promise and ability this season than he has in the past, and Spring Training will be interesting to see where he is at for 2012.