ST. LOUIS -- Jeremy Guthrie was reluctant to talk on Tuesday, knowing that he can speak with his actions on the mound. The right-hander will start Wednesday night's game against the Cardinals at Busch Stadium. It'll be his first start since June 17, when he gave up four runs, three earned, in three innings in a loss to the Tigers. Guthrie started and won the Rockies' Opening Day game at Houston, and in the early days of the season, he gained popularity as being accessible, whether via Twitter or on the streets of Denver. But now he's 3-7 with a 6.56 ERA in 15 games, 11 of them starts, and fans haven't been shy about treating him rudely.
Guthrie approaches life with the philosophy that civility should be a given, and not subject to his production on the mound. At first he politely declined an interview request, explaining that the refusal was not out of anger but just because of his belief that fans don't particularly want to hear what he had to say -- they just want him to produce.
But he decided to take the opportunity to discuss his work ethic, which is independent of his stats."It's another opportunity, and I know in baseball nothing is guaranteed, no matter how much experience you have, what you may or may not have accomplished," Guthrie said. "I've taken every outing, whether they've been good outings or bad outings, and been grateful for them. I continue to feel the same way. I have a chance to start again, and hopefully that will lead to many, many, many more starts. "My best way of showing gratitude is working hard -- with teammates and coaches and myself -- to become better. If it's not good enough and I don't become better, I can lay my head down knowing I did everything I could do. That, for me, is success, what life is about. Whether it's pitching or being a husband and a father, I try to do the best I can. When I make mistakes, I address them and try to do better." The chance is there. Left-hander Josh Outman lasted just three outings on Monday in a loss to the Cardinals and has a 10.15 ERA in his last six starts. If Guthrie pitches well on Wednesday, he could be slotted into the four-starter rotation in Outman's stead.
Manager Jim Tracy said it's "not jumping to conclusions" to assume that about Guthrie's start.Guthrie said that being in the bullpen has helped him focus on some mechanical issues that derailed his early performances. He'll see how well it works on Wednesday night. "Nobody can guarantee an outcome, but it's the preparation that gives you the belief that tomorrow is gong to be a better day than the last," he said. "Ultimately, fans want the results, and that's what they deserve. But nobody here can promise them."