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Game 21: Saltdogs 13, Wingnuts 8

Box score — Lincoln 13, Wingnuts 8

My guy Sam Cooke singing A Change Is Gonna Come — wow, can that guy sing.

I’m not just throwing out random Sam Cooke songs on the blog for the heck of it. Even though I should, because that guy is awesome. I have a station of him on Pandora, and it plays a lot of Otis Redding and Smokey Robinson and, of course, Sam Cooke. And that’s an amazing station. I’d recommend it.

But I digress. A change is gonna come to the Wingnuts’ bullpen. I’m not here to go after guys’ jobs, so I’m not going to just name guys and say they’ve got to go. But I think Justin Dowdy is safe, that’s all I’ll say. You can deduce whatever you’d like from that statement.

It’s weird, because the individual relievers all have impressive pedigrees. They’ve pitched in affiliated baseball. They’ve pitched for teams who have played in the postseason. They’ve gotten guys out consistently. It’s hard to figure out what could be happening here.

The Wingnuts bullpen has had two scoreless outings in the last four games. In the other two games, it has allowed 24 runs in 5 1/3 innings. Yeah, that’s not very good. Tonight, Doug Hurn and Matt Petty completely melted down and Cephas Howard and Dowdy weren’t too great, either. Dowdy shouldn’t have even been pitching a night after throwing 28 high-stress pitches. But Hurn couldn’t get three outs in the ninth so Dowdy had to come in.

The first move I’d make is to bring back Diego Soto, who pitched well with the Wingnuts in the second half of last season and has a 2.25 ERA in the Frontier League currently. No, he’s not a guy with experience in affiliated ball, but he’s proven himself at this level and he’s actually pretty good. I think he could handle the seventh inning. Just my opinion, and I’m not paid to give opinions so take it with a grain of salt.

Cephas Howard left the game with an apparent injury tonight, so if he’s out for any length of time I’m calling Soto pretty much as soon as possible. There’s a couple other Wingnuts pitchers who don’t appear long for the active roster if they keep going the way they are. Really, it’s gotten to the point where it’s difficult and almost impossible to rely on anyone but Dowdy. With the other five guys, you have no idea what you’re getting from game to game.

It doesn’t make me happy to have to write about the poor performances of others. I’m not the guy to feel joy over the misery of others. But you know what does make me happy? Sam Cooke. Here’s a couple more of his songs. You should all click on them:

Bring It On Home To Me

Another Saturday Night

Up Next: Sioux Falls at Wingnuts, June 7, 7:05 p.m. at Lawrence Dumont Stadium. Starting pitchers: Sioux Falls, LH Brian Flores (1-1, 5.09 ERA); Wingnuts, RH Luke Massetti (1-1, 5.00)