Nick Blackburn - potential ace?
I have been playing a game on Facebook called "Dream Nine". I am playing as the Twins.
Every team has one ace. For the Yankees it is Sabathia, for the Dodgers it is Kershaw and so on. It takes some work to get your ace, and when I finally qualified for my ace, I got Nick Blackburn. I guess the game company had as much trouble as we do finding an ace on the Twins' roster. If you play as the Twins, then Blackburn will be your ace.
Once you get a player, you can train the player to increase his skills. I have been focusing on training my ace -- Blackburn. I have trained him till he ached. After all the training, Blackburn has now won more than 10 games in a row, mostly against quality teams.
This got me to thinking. Maybe if Blackburn trained like Stallone in the Rocky movies during the offseason, he could go back to something close to his production in 2008 (193 IP, 4.05 ERA and 1.360 WHIP) and 2009 (205 IP, 4.03 ERA and 1.366 IP).
Blackburn will be 31 years old in February. This year is a contract year for him. It seems at least possible that he could make a comeback. It seems unlikely that Blackburn will ever be an ace -- his strikeout rate has not been high since 2004 (A level). But if he could get some heavy sink on the ball and stay down in the zone, it seems reasonable that he could burn a lot of innings with good results.
What do you think?