May 16, 2007

Burgos vs. Benitez

John Delcos at Lo Hud, writes about the comparison of Ambiorix Burgos and Armando Benitez:

Frequent poster Steve C. made a comparison between Ambiorix Burgos and Armando Benitez. I covered Benitez when he was with the Orioles and back then had a sense he was never going to reach the elite level.

One of his coaches patted his chest and told me he doesn’t have this. You knew what he was talking about. The book on Benitez is he has brittle confidence to go along with his fastball. If he blew one game he would blow another.

After Cleveland got to him in the 97 ALCS, you knew the Orioles were in trouble and sure enough Benitez got tagged for the loss a couple more times in the series. Look at Benitez against Atlanta if you don’t want to go back that far.

I haven’t covered Burgos enough to draw that conclusion. He has closer stuff, but logically something has to be missing if they would trade that arm for Brian Bannister. Maybe it was something other than control. Then again, the Royals have been bad for a long time for a reason and misjudging players is part of it.

With Burgos’ arm, if he can develop another pitch, it isn’t inconceivable they could look at him in the rotation. Willie Randolph said it was under discussion in spring training, but this spring the Mets had a glut of starters. This is something to file away for later.

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