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Estaban - 5th Starter?

Estaban Loaiza was sharp again Sunday. After Loney got him into hot trouble by nonchalantly turning a simple ground ball into an error he was forced to face David Ortiz, Manny Ramirez, and Mike Lowell with 2nd and 3rd and no outs. He proceeded to work his way out of the jam, and then shut down the Red Sox for the rest of his 3 inning performance. Most Dodger fans remember how bad Loaiza fared when the Dodgers acquired him last Sept. With Jason Schmidt due to hit the DL to start the season, the 5th spot in the rotation is Esteban's to lose, and so far he looks like he will hang onto that spot. He hasn't been healthy for over a year and a half as he missed most of 2007 with neck and knee problems, and part of 2006 with a strained back muscle. It has been a while since he's been 100% healthy. Taking a look at his peripherals provided by Baseball HQ, is he upto the job?

Estaban Loaiza's Three Year Peripherals
Year IP ERA xERA Ctl Dom Cmd H% S% G/L/F
2005 217 3.77 3.85 2.3 7.2 3.1 32% 72% 44/22/35
2006 154 4.90 4.49 2.3 5.7 2.4 32% 67% 42/20/38
2007 37 5.79 6.44 4.8 4.8 1.0 31% 71% 21/29/50

Remember when you look at the numbers your looking at a pitcher who was hurt in 2006 and 2007 so it is hard to get a handle on his skill set. Back in 2005 Loaiza was a solid rotational pitcher and better then anything we have been running out in the 5th spot since Tomko/Hendricson joined the team. True Blue thinks that if he's healthy he will be the best 5th starter we've had since Kuo took to the rotation in Sept 2006 but we seem to be on the outside looking in with our opinion. Most seem to remember his Sept and figure he'll just get hurt again.