These are quotes from a story that ran in the Star Tribune just this week about Ricky Nolasco:
“I feel really strong. I’ve got my legs under me, right from the start. I was dedicated to our program this winter, and I think it’ll pay off.” — Nolasco.
“I’ve been very pleased with Ricky. He came in here very determined to get off to a good start, both in how he prepared in the winter, and the competitive level he brought to his game here. The bottom line is, he’s pitched a lot better.” — Paul Molitor.
“We’ve said all along, we need to get Ricky headed in the right direction again.” — Terry Ryan.
On Wednesday, Nolasco was rocked by the Tigers. He did look notably slimmer, but the pitches were just as fat as they were a year ago.
And on Thursday, we get word that Nolasco is complaining of elbow pain — something Twins fans, and maybe even some Twins officials, might roll their eyes at as an excuse for another lousy outing. (He complained of elbow pain last year, too, as you’ll recall).
When Nolasco wasn’t bad last year, he was hurt. It earned a pitcher who signed a four-year, $49 million contract before the 2014 season the unofficial nickname “Ricky Fiasco.”
One start into 2015, nothing has changed. He’s either hurt, bad or both.