Blog Entry

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Posted on: February 6, 2012 1:01 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2012 1:02 pm
The Rockies watched their promising 2011 season collapse because the rotation fell apart.

Not enough starters. Not enough dependable starters.

Jeremy Guthrie, acquired Monday from the Orioles for Jason Hammel and Matt Lindstrom, should be an improvement. But is he enough, and is he the right guy for the job?

The Rockies rotation is deeper and more dependable, with the addition of Guthrie, as well as Guillermo Moscoso, Josh Outman and Tyler Chatwood, acquired earlier in the winter. It's still shaky enough, however, that Guthrie could well end up as the opening day starter (Jhoulys Chacin is the other likely option).

That's Guthrie, whose main strength is that he can be depended on for 200 innings a season. It's Guthrie, who the Orioles dealt precisely because they didn't see him as the leader of a staff, someone for their talented younger starters to emulate and take after.

Guthrie is a better fit in Colorado than he was in Baltimore, though, for several reasons:

-- Moving from the American League East to the National League West should help, and even though he'll make half his starts in Coors Field, starting regularly in Petco Park, Dodger Stadium and AT&T Park should help a fly-ball pitcher. Guthrie made 15 career starts in New York and Boston, winning just three of the games.

-- Guthrie, who signed a one-year, $8.2 million contract as part of the trade, should be motivated in his final year before free agency. Also, he's pitching for the team closest to his Utah home. Guthrie already posted a picture of himself in a Tim Tebow Broncos uniform.

-- The Rockies should be a contending team. Guthrie went 30-48 in his last three years with the Orioles, with two 17-loss seasons. He should be excited to be with a team that actually has a chance.

It's a low-cost acquisition for the Rockies, who tried but failed earlier this winter on some free-agent starters (most notably Hiroki Kuroda). Hammel was so inconsistent last summer that the Rockies at one point removed him from the rotation, and while Lindstrom has a good arm, it hasn't translated into great success.

Between them, Hammel and Lindstrom were set to make even more money than Guthrie this year, so the trade fits the Rockies budget-wise, as well.

What do the Orioles get out of it?

That's harder to see, since neither Hammel nor Lindstrom figures to be part of the long-term plan in Baltimore (and the Orioles hardly have a short-term plan for contending).

One way to look at it: As long as Guthrie was there, he was going to be the veteran starter that Orioles kids like Jake Arrieta and Zach Britton would watch. As long as Guthrie was there, he was going to be the focal point of the rotation.

When Pat Gillick took over the Phillies, he traded away veteran outfielder Bobby Abreu, in a move that allowed guys like Ryan Howard, Chase Utley and Jimmy Rollins to become the dominant personalities in the clubhouse. The Orioles want Arrieta and Britton to lead their rotation, and that may not happen as quickly when there's a guy who has been there as long as Guthrie had.

Should the Orioles have gotten more for a 200-inning pitcher with a good arm? That's easy to say, but when they put Guthrie on the market last July, there were no takers. There was little trade interest in him this winter, either.

The Rockies had followed him since late last season, though, and they saw him as an upgrade.

He should be an upgrade. The question is whether it will make enough of a difference.


Since: Dec 31, 2006
Posted on: February 10, 2012 11:56 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

8 years in the major and not even pitch 1 shutout in his carrer. Good luck in mild high stadium and his era going to be in the high 5.
Probably going be #5 in Giants rotation.

Since: Jan 9, 2009
Posted on: February 10, 2012 8:32 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Guthrie has never pitched anywhere in the MLB but with a bad team in the AL East.  His numbers...while not great...have not been that bad.  With this trade, he goes from a team that has very little chance of competing, to a team who has every chance of competing...and in a division that is pitcher friendly.  Arguably, Colorado could have the best offense in the West.  When was he ever on a team that could say that?
     And, Colorado didn't have to give a whole lot.  I do think that Lindstrom may end up as Baltimore's closer, but give Hammel little chance of being a force in the AL East.
     You say that there was very little interest in Guthrie?  Why should have there been?  He's going to be a free agent after this year, but think there would have been a lot of interest in a guy who has hardly missed a start in five years once he became a free agent. 
      Colorado is starved for pitching...Hammel obviously wasn't one of their top options.  Guthrie, however, has the "potential" of being a top of the rotation pitchers for many teams.  I hate the word "potential" for players with as much experience as Guthrie, but he really has never had a chance.  I personally feel that the Rockies have  totally reconsructed their roation for the better and did it without giving up anything they were really counting on for 2012.  Lindstrom would have been nice to have, but you know as well as I do, that relievers are very undependable from one year to the next.
    I live in San Fransciso, and think that now they have fallen behind Arizona and Colorado with off season moves.  In fact, I think that with Guthrie, Pomeranz, Chacin, Dela Rosa and Moscoso as the probable starters (and pitchers like Chatowwod, Nicasio and White to pick up the slack)...they could be the favorites to win the West.

Since: Feb 11, 2010
Posted on: February 9, 2012 11:05 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Guthrie has been underrated for years. He's a legit #2 pitcher. Pitching in Colorado isn't the same as when everyone was roided up. Escaping the AL East's sneaky roiders should only help his stats.

Since: May 19, 2007
Posted on: February 9, 2012 2:16 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Smf52 Good comments. I disagree with several points however. First, on the Rockies' prospects...yes there are 4 but none rank as high as the D'back's pitchers, and only newly acquired Pomerance has a chance to join the big club this year, whereas the D'backs have 4 pitchers ready to help the club this year and 3 of them are projected as Top of the Rotation starters. Second, you mentioned 2 pitchers coming back from injuries, who you hope will shore up a very iffy rotation. DLR and Nicosia might come back in 2012, but how effective will they be? D'backs have Drew coming back, but I'm not expecting him to step into a major role. If he does, great, but the D'backs won the division without him last year. The point is to not raise our expectations based on injured players. Third, the D'backs have no glaring weaknesses, whereas the Rockies' starting rotation, bullpen, closer, and bench are all question marks. By contrast, the D'backs have a Gold Glove OF, who hit .292 last year...and can't crack the starting lineup this year! Name any other ball club in MLB with that kind of bench strength?!

Since: May 19, 2007
Posted on: February 7, 2012 9:24 am

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Let's talk baseball, instead of personal insults and threats.

Since: May 26, 2009
Posted on: February 7, 2012 12:08 am

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

-- The Rockies should be a contending team. Guthrie went 30-48 in his last three years with the Orioles, with two 17-loss seasons. He should be excited to be with a team that actually has a chance.

Well, define "contending" lol. The NL West might not be baseball's greatest division, but there's no denying that the Colorado Rockies will be hard pressed to finish higher than 3rd. That puts them clear out of the Wild Card, much less the division title. Barring significant injuries to the Diamondbacks and Giants there is no way that Colorado sniffs 1st place. And the Wild Card race figures to feature the solid Braves, improved Reds, improved Marlins, improved Nationals, and still respectable Brewers once Braun comes off suspension. Colorado's rotation is a disaster on the scale somewhere between underwater oil spill and arid climate wildfire. All they've got going for them is the offense with two really good players (Tulo, CarGo), and one good player (Cuddyer). That's not a formula for winning on a regular basis. The MLB season is a long grind. You have to be built for the entirety of it.

We're talking middle of the road plain and simple. If "having a chance" means "contending" then poop my pants and call me Sally. The Toronto Blue Jays might as well be "contenders". The Pittsburgh Pirates might as well be "contenders".

Buffalo Bob
Since: Dec 11, 2011
Posted on: February 6, 2012 7:13 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Dec 19, 2006
Posted on: February 6, 2012 6:26 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Ryno is a moron

Since: Oct 11, 2006
Posted on: February 6, 2012 5:43 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

@greydawg - The answer is when the Orioles are SOLD by the INEPT CHEAP SKATE of an owner Peter Angelos, to someone like Cal Ripken for instance. Then, the owner and front office would give a darn. The fans are past fed up with the losing teams in the toughest division in baseball.

Once that happens, then and ONLY then, will Free Agents consider this club. Until then we're screwed.

Since: Mar 1, 2008
Posted on: February 6, 2012 5:23 pm

Guthrie could help Rockies, but how much?

Does'nt Matter.   Guthrie is already washed up.... and will continue to get rocked at Coors...Giants win the division by 10 games (unless injuries blindside them like last year)..... Arizona, Rox and Dodgers wont get to .500..... and the Padres will be the worst in the league.  You heard it here first.

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