Tuesday, January 13, 2004

Jarvis - Healthy and Hungry 

Found a following the local hero story on Lexington, KY native Kevin Jarvis yesterday, and while it is mainly a fluff piece, its more than I have on Wiki or Hansen. I'm always curious if ballplayers "dumped" like they were, realize how much they are already disliked by the M's diehard fans and bloggers. Kevin seems to be aware of the criticism, and looking for a fresh start after injury plagued 2002 and 2003 seasons.

"Sometimes it gets lost in the shuffle that you pitched at less than 100 percent and were coming back from an injury. Some people are looking at the numbers and statistics, and they tend to forget about that. I'm in a great position. I'm extremely excited to go to Seattle and be a part of a winning tradition there."

The article ends with this possibly enigmatic quote: "If I'm healthy and pitching like I can, I'm sure I'll get the ball as much as I need to get it."

I'll choose to look at this as Kevin is hungry for the ball, and he is going to pitch well and earn some chances. I wish him the best as long as he's wearing a Mariners uniform. I hope M's fans give him a chance and don't automatically assume that he is the 2004 version of Giovanni Carrara

And more good news is that in 2001, Jarvis hit .246 and launched a home run. That already makes him more productive than Jeff Cirillo in 2003.

So how did Kevin Jarvis get a 3-year, $9M deal? I did some digging and found an article that describes the optimism that surrounded Kevin as he headed into 2002 with this big new contract.

Jarvis posted career highs with 32 starts, 193 1-3 innings and 133 strikeouts, which earned him a $9 million, three-year contract extension that includes a $5.25 million option in 2005.

"It was a solid year, but it wasn't anything spectacular," Jarvis said.

"I'm proud of the fact I took the ball every time I did and I put up a lot of innings. That is something I aspired to do. It's definitely something to be built on, but there's a lot of room for improvement."
"It was definitely the most enjoyable season I've had," Jarvis said. "That's a direct result of being an important cog in the team concept. Your teammates count on you to do the job. Once you get a taste of that, you want it to continue."

It sounds like Jarvis is going to be pushing to rediscover the glory of being an important cog on the Mariners, and will work hard to get there.

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