Derek Holland is coming around. Maybe some of you Texas Rangers fans can ease up on him a bit.
There is no more polarizing player on the Rangers club. My Twitter feed has seen Holland called many negative names. It stems from the fact he has never become an All Star pitcher like so many thought he could become after the 2011 World Series loss to St. Louis. Many fans don’t think he is serious about his job.
Monday night in Cleveland, Holland pitched six innings and gave up one run – a solo shot to his former teammate Mike Napoli – for his first win since April 30. A full month. Holland is now 4-4 on the season with an ERA of 4.78.
Holland had two stinkers in May where he didn’t get out of the third inning in either start, giving up a combined total of 19 hits, 16 runs and four walks. Since those two stinkers, Holland has pitched six innings in three straight starts. He lost 3-1 in Oakland, lost 2-0 to the Halos in Arlington and Monday night got a win as the Rangers offense helped out in Cleveland.
His numbers in those last three starts: 18.2 innings, 16 hits, five runs, five earned runs, seven strikeouts and four walks. That is progress.
Holland sees how Martin Perez is pitching and he isn’t going to get bumped in the rotation now that Yu Darvish is back. Pressure is good and maybe, just maybe, this is helping Holland get to a level so many Rangers fans want him at.
He is tied with Colby Lewis in wins (4) but his ERA is the worst among the starters. He’s got the worst number of all the starters in quality stars, still, I see progress. AJ Griffin is a month away from getting off the DL.
I’m not giving up on Derek Holland.