Who knows what lurks in the mind of Mike Scoscia?
Wow. Santana against Beckett in the Heart of Darkness. What can Mike be thinking, putting an excitable head case in the worst possible situation for him, thereby seeming wilfully to ensure a loss? I'm the lousiest baseball analyst on HH, so I can only guess.
Perhaps his main goal is to set up the best possible situation for the Angels in the other game. I mean, I'd be happy if we came out of tomorrow with a split. If he switched pitchers, the chances of losing both seem significantly greater.
Moreover, I don't see who else on the 40-man roster he could put in for a spot start besides Santana. Am I missing someone obvious? No one in the pen is stretched out much beyond two innings, and I don't see any other available starters on the 40-man roster.
So unless I'm missing something obvious, I think the only thing to do is pray for some Black Magic. We know that Ervin does have an inner Panther. He has won a much bigger game for us in a much more harrowing situation, in the '05 ALDS at New York.
Maybe it's that inner Panther that Mike is hoping to awaken. Maybe Mike is attempting a Lasorda-esque Hail Mary play here. Perhaps by putting his faith in Ervin at this narrow pass for the team, he's hoping Ervin will rise to the occasion.
Or maybe he's just mad at him.