Time again for a Chipalatta special — the Free Blog Weekend. Our loyal readers can go in any direction you want as long as it has to do with the Astros or baseball and as long as it is fit for our blog family.
And also following tradition we will throw out a couple of items to chew on if you so choose.
Injuries in retrospect.
Good friend of the blog, old pro, was writing about how he had just learned that Chris Devenski had played through an injury last season. Looking back to 2018 it is pretty easy to see where a number of players were playing through an injury or on the DL (IL this year) or coming back from the DL with injuries and performance tied to tumbling stats:
- Devo – first 35 games – 1.32 ERA / 15 holds / 2 wins / 2 saves
- In his next 15 games his ERA was 11.48 and included two appearances right before his DL stint where he gave up 8 runs without recording an out. He also had only 3 holds, no saves and no wins the rest of the season.
- On June 30, Jose Altuve had a robust .342 BA / .407 OBP / .890 OPS with 55 runs scored and 41 RBIs.
- Through the rest of the season, he and his injured knee put up a decent (for players not named Altuve) .273 / .351 / .749 line and only scored 29 runs and knocked in 20 runs.
- On June 10 George Springer had played 65 games and was hitting .294 BA/.368 OBP/.881 OPS slash with 14 HRs and 39 RBIs
- The rest of the way (75 games) he put down (can’t say put up) a .236/.326/.679 slash with 8 HRs and 32 RBIs while struggling with thumb problems and a prolonged slump
- Its not clear exactly when Carlos Correa‘s back went out, but when he finally went on the DL at the end of June he was hitting an OK .268 BA/.352 OBP/ .832 OPS in 73 games with 46 runs scored, 13 HRs and 49 RBIs.
- After missing about 6 weeks of the season, Correa in his last 37 games had a pathetic .180 BA/.261 OBP/ .509 OPS with only 16 runs, 2 HRs and 16 RBIs.
The point being that injuries can derail performances and often can be seen in numbers leading up to and after DL stints. And sometimes it is only in retrospect that we spot these drop-offs.
Keuchel: the saga continues.
It is no hyperbole to say that when Patrick Corbin signed for 6 yrs / $140 million on December 7th of last year, Dallas Keuchel became the best unsigned pitcher on the planet. And now some 3 months and a week or so later, the statement is still true.
Keuchel ticks off lots of boxes on both sides of a yes or no list for teams:
- Former Cy Young winner
- Over 30
- Lefty who knows how to pitch, not just throw
- Needs a tailwind to reach 90 mph on the gun
- Has won big games for the team in pennant races and in the playoffs
- Would cost a draft pick if signed before the next draft
- Threw more than 200 innings last season
- Gave up the most hits around (more than 1 per inning)
We don’t know what numbers he went into the offseason chasing, though with his agent Scott Boras comparing him to Tommy Glavine and Jesus Christ (wait a minute that was me – because of his beard) we are sure they asked for too much for too long. What we don’t know is if they have even been fielding offers and from whom.
At this point are they just going to wait until a team with big expectations springs a leak due to injuries and has to at least give him big bucks even if it is not for as many years as he would like? The Yankees have been getting some bad news on Luis Severino and CC Sabathia so far this spring. Could the Yankee killer join forces with the pinstripers? Stay tuned.