Chacin pushed back; Pomeranz still September possibility

September 1, 2011 | 11:25 am | 19  

The Colorado Rockies have pushed back Jhoulys Chacin‘s next scheduled start due to illness. Chacin had been scheduled to start Saturday in San Diego, but is suffering from a fever and tonsil inflammation. He will instead start Sept. 9 at home against Cincinnati.

Chacin has pitched 170 innings this season, nearly equaling the 2010 total of 172 2/3 that he amassed between the majors and Triple-A Colorado Springs. With likely four starts remaining, he is on pace to surpass 190 innings.

Left-hander Drew Pomeranz, who underwent an appendectomy less than two weeks ago, is throwing bullpens with Double-A Tulsa in hope he can pitch in the Drillers’ season finale Monday and get into games with the Rockies in September. Otherwise, Pomeranz is a strong candidate to go to the Arizona Fall League. Three players — Tim Wheeler, Ben Paulsen and Nolan Arenado — have already been selected for the AFL, but the Rockies have yet to name the four pitchers they will send.


  • Robb | September 1, 2011 | 11:59 am

    Good plan to take it easy with Chacin at this point. He has been a workhorse for the most part and now that the season is basically over overpitching him makes no sense. I am torn on Pomeranz. On one hand I would love to see him pitch a little bit this September even if in relief. At least he would get some acclimation to Coors Field and the majors. But, like Chacin, I don’t see the need to force something on him with the season over. Let him recuperate and pitch in the AFL. What do the rest of you think?

  • Rich M | September 1, 2011 | 12:18 pm

    It is all about 2012, and if the Rockies really intend to compete next year? Pomeranz needs four or five MLB starts to get acclimated to MLB hitters, as we have seen to a very similar extent with White.

    If the Rockies intend to compete in 2012 then those starts would be better served at the end of this meaningless 2011 season, instead of the start of next season.

  • Miketober | September 1, 2011 | 2:24 pm

    Someone mentioned in another thread that bringing him up this year wastes an option year. I don’t pretend to understand how that all works, or if it applies, or whether it matters for a pitcher of his caliber, but it’s something for the organization to consider.

  • egossage | September 1, 2011 | 2:32 pm

    I’m with Rich M. If he’s ready why have him face MLB hitters for the first time next year? Might as well get it out of the way this year.

  • Steve Foster | September 1, 2011 | 4:50 pm

    It doesn’t waste an option year, because he would not be optioned this year. It would only affect options if he were optioned next year when he otherwise wouldn’t be, say to the start the season at Triple-A and be recalled later. But without some major-league time this season, there’s a strong chance that Pomeranz would see some back-and-forth with Triple-A anyway, and thus an option would be used regardless.

  • Doctor_Christopher | September 1, 2011 | 10:27 pm

    If we are worried about option years with Pomeranz, then he is a failed prospect. The bigger issue is accrued service time (assuming that in the next labour deal they dont get rid of the super 2 label). If Pomeranz is healthy enough to pitch with all his stuff then yes, lets see him here, one start on the road and one at home at least. Playing the way this team is right now you have to get us to come and see or watch on tv somehow.

    I am worried about Chacin and too many innings. A couple of more starts and then lets shut him down. No reason to waste innings in the arm for nothing. Lets see if Reynolds, Mortensen adn copmany have anything to show for what they learned this year.

    Wow…this is going to be a very hard month of baseball for Rox fans. We basically are having to get excited about a) Wilin Rosario though even if he flops it doesnt mean a whole lot b) Pomeranz and White pitching to get experience c) see if Tulo and CarGo go 30/30 and d) if the team plays well enough and hard enough to affirm managements decision to bring back JT or if they tank whether it is bad enough that DOD and the Monforts have to make a change.

    And again I say to the Monfort haters. These guys have sunk a lot of money into next year’s roster already with the deals for CarGo, Tulo and DLR. To accuse them of being happy with a crappy team that draws 36K each night (which they simply wont the next month anyways) is unfair and is a 2005 viewpoint, not one rooted in the present. And no, I dont work for the Monforts and for that matter, I am a vegetarian, so I dont even eat meat processed in their plants. The Rox have (especially next year) a very appropriate salary base. If you want them to spend like the Yanks or BoSox I suggest you buy some shares and pony up. We may well next year be in the top 1/3 of teams depending on how the off-season works out.

  • Chad | September 1, 2011 | 11:28 pm

    I’m not so much worried about options as how it might affect Pomeranz’s service time clock, if any. You see a lot of teams in the Rockies market situation hold off on some top prospects from time to time (like the Giants with Posey) to get an extra full-year of arbitration out of their elite prospects. It would be nice to see that kind of savvy out of the Rockies. On the other hand, they are proactive about keeping their elite young players locked up as best they can. So maybe the arbitration thing wouldn’t matter too much (and given that they need to make a new CBA in December, it might end up being a moot point). From a developmental stand point, I’d probably want to see him in the AFL instead of being a September call-up (given that he’s only had one year in the minors so far).

  • GARY | September 2, 2011 | 4:30 am

    Agree Dr.C,it’s not the payroll outlay-rather the lack of production for some of that money.This site was on fire with kudos for management stepping up last winter w/deals for Cargo,Tulo,and DLR.The remaining O’s are going to end up with very good numbers,and hopefully DLR will came back and be the pitcher we all think he can be.The key next year is if we can find any kind of big league rotation,and find an affortable bat/glove for 3rd base,and have money left for the mortgage on our new spring training extravaganza!

  • progmatinee | September 2, 2011 | 6:35 am

    I’ll take the devil’s advocate stance here. The signings of Tulo and Cargo didn’t impress me much. Both players were under team control for 4 and 6 years I believe. Their signings were a capital outlay, yes, but lets not kid ourselves into thinking the Monforts weren’t being shrewd while doing it. They were afraid of what the market value for the players would be at the time. Lets not say that the Monforts were cheap in 2005 but by 2008 they were not. The Matt Holliday trade occurred because the Monforts were unwilling to pay market value for something. Just as they were unwilling to pay market value for Lance Berkman.

    Rather than committing money to 2 players who already had long term deals I would have rather seen them add some better new pieces.

    Extending deals for your already signed players so we can win 75 games a year for 10 years doesn’t get me going as much as winning 90-100 games a year for 3 or 4 years.

  • Trip | September 2, 2011 | 8:19 am

    To be honest I am not sure if the Monforts are cheap or not. But I do want to remind everyone Denver is a small market team. Don’t ever expect the salary levels here to be the same as NYC or Boston or LA or Chicago for example.

    A few things to remember,
    The prices of seats is much higher in those cities than it is here.

    The baseball teams income goes way beyond the number of fannies in the seats. The TV and radio broadcast rates are more lucrative in the larger cities. e.g. There is about 35 Million people in the NYC metropolitan area. This is probably more than the entire Mountain Time Zone, which we share with the DBacks.

    Since MLB does not share TV revenue as does the NFL for example, that discrepancy becomes huge.

    The only way the Rocks can spend as much money as the larger cities is to charge more for seats. Which may have the net affect of lowering revenue.

    Next the Monforts have to be careful with their money. As has been shown in other years, if the Rocks don’t have an entertaining team, the attendance goes down. Some years may be good for them, but they need to ensure they have enough money to run the team in the down years as well.

    As Prog points out, it was a shrewd move on their part to sign Cargo and Tulo to long term contracts. Hopefully the other parts fit to make it a successful year.

  • Rich M | September 2, 2011 | 8:20 am

    Prog while you and I don’t agree on much here at ITR, I am right there with on this issue. Some people thought that Rockies payroll would be in the low $90m’s this year, it turns out that it will be closer to around $84m based on the latest numbers that I saw.

    Now the difference between say $92m and $84m doesn’t seem like a whole lot, but it really is when at the same time you are making financial mistakes that cost a whole bunch of additional dollars with players like Delcarmen, Lopez, Wigginton, Giambi, Corpas, Cook and even DLR.

    Now here is the point – the Rockies had a very good team coming into 2011 and if they had creatively spent that extra money (say $8m) to bring in players like Uggla, Young, D Wright or Willingham then they likely would have extended the 2011 season beyond the All Star break. Ideally the Rockies should spend marginally more on quality players rather than spend anything at all on a reclamation projects like Lopez.

    We all know that the Rockies will never be players in the FA market for the Puhols, Feilder, C Lee, Sibathia, etc and that’s ok – but at the same time the Rockies have been extremely reluctant to bring in players that can have a significant impact while being in the next tier down in terms of salary commitments.

    All of this while watching their young players stagnate and lose value when it was easily apparent that they no long had any future with the Rockies – like EY2, Nelson, Stewart, G Reynolds, Mortenson and even Spilborghs. If you don’t move these assets, they quickly become worthless, and that costs the Rockies big time in the long run.

    So no the Monforts are not cheap as in the same sense that they were just a few years ago or so, but they are not necessarily spending dollars in the best possible way to consistently put a contending team on the field either – other than just an occasional one year miracle/fluke type of thing.

    Just like the DBacks were a year or so ago, the Rockies are not as terrible team as their record might indicate, however they do need a complete over haul from the GM, to the Manager, and several players in order to get to the next level.

  • Doctor_Christopher | September 2, 2011 | 8:39 am

    This is why I love this site. Great debate. And prog, I have to think about the capital outlay model in my evaluation. I need to chew on what you all said.

    One thing about this past off-season, there really was only one player I think should have and intended to go after – Victor Martinez, the C/1B for the Tigers now. The deal could have been matched, but I am not sure he would fit here. I guess there was Berkman but wow, who saw this season coming (the tail off maybe). I think the Rox thought Wiggy’s athleticism was more important than Berkman’s potential of having big season. This offseason right now there could be some decent 2nd tier players (if Puljos or Fielder ends up here I promise to never post again….the shock will kill me). That is why trades are going to be key. The Monforts were willing to grab Wandy (DOD smartly told Houston to put on their boots when they asked for Rosario or Pomeranz). That should count to their credit. They might do so with Wright or some other key player.

    And Rich…I was thinking the same thing. A little bit of tinkering and the DBacks become potential division winners. It worth being excited this off season and spring.

  • progmatinee | September 2, 2011 | 9:00 am

    Great points Rich M.

    To me, here is the problem the Monforts and O’Dowd have put themselves in by trading players like Matt Holliday and not making serious offers to guys like Lance Berkman.

    FAs look at Colorado with a smirk. The top players know they won’t get a fair offer (or likely no offer at all). Monforts expect players to take home town deals or do them favors.

    Then when the best players are off the market they look at all the trash left and end up over paying for it.

    Any one of us could have told them that investing in 1 good FA is better than wasting the same amount of money on 3 bad FAs especially when those 2 roster spots could be used on prospects that need to move up instead of sit around.

    I still would like an answer why the Rockies were not in the discussion for Matt Holliday in 2010. His contract is not ridiculous. His production is still high. Did they really have that much confidence in Brad Hawpe and Seth Smith that they had no interest in bringing Matt back?

    Lets say they signed Matt and it meant that Tulo and Cargo would need to live another 3 years on their existing contracts? Would that really have ruined them.

    It just speaks to me as the Monforts more interesting in making money long term than winning.

  • progmatinee | September 2, 2011 | 9:04 am

    Doc and Rich I do agree that with the right tinkering maybe we can compete.

  • Robb | September 2, 2011 | 9:05 am

    There are definitely some comparisons that can be made between this years DBacks and next years (hopefully) Rockies as far as players go. One big difference though is in the manager seat. Kirk Gibson was a tough guy who, while he has toned down the intensity a bit, is still a demanding leader who puts a little fire in his guys belly. At least that is how it seems from a distance. Jim Tracy just doesn’t have that personality. It was great when he first came in because he replaced Clint Hurdle who had overstayed his welcome, but now that he has been here for 3 seasons, JT has worn out his welcome as well with constant lineup tinkering, etc. I applaud the Monfort’s for being loyal to their people especially in today’s world where people are laid off by the thousands. It just seems like a change needs to be made and that will have as much of an impact on 2012 as a couple of players will, unless we get David Wright:).

  • Doc | September 2, 2011 | 9:23 am

    I’ve always stuck up for the Monforts and drank their purple Kool Aid, but that will end if they don’t do something significant and firing Carney isn’t significant. I’ve posted many times my feeling that the problem with the Rockies is either over-valued players, the mismanagement of them, or both. In other words, either DOD has acquired a bunch of AAAA players or Jim Tracy has turned legitimate prospects into AAAA players. One or the other, if not both, have failed at their jobs and need to be replaced.

    Of course, the Monforts might be exactly what their detractors have claimed and feel all is okay as long as the majority of fans—as shown in DP’s polls– think the problem lies outside of managements hands. The Monfort’s failure to address this issue will finally prove to me they don’t care, and Bill was right when he told me so a few weeks ago. Damn, I hate to eat crow.

  • drrockies | September 2, 2011 | 9:23 am

    some really well thought out comments by all. I have to wonder if going back after Holliday wasn’t considered since the bad taste that his agent (Boras of course) left the ROX managment with. The Rockies were never given an opportunity to negotiate with Matt after their first offer. Boras rejected the offer and immediately went out and shopped Matt around without any further conversations with the ROX. In hindsight Berkman would have been worth the investment but would any of us put up that money given his last few years? It just turned out great for St.L and for Lance.

    Several here have pointed out spending on one top line FA trumps 3 journeymen signings would be a better approach. Agree 100%. Problem is now we are looking at rebuilding a winning program to attrach quality. By the way, is Wright another “heading into the end of career” player(and more injuries lately) that would be much different?

  • Rich M | September 2, 2011 | 11:40 am

    Do not believe that anyone has mentioned this here at ITR before. But it just occurred to me that J Tracy would be a pretty good manager with a veteran team, because he prefers to play veteran players and has very little patience for the mistakes that rookies are bound to make.

    The problem with that approach (J Tracy) is that it is totally opposite of the stated team objective of building a solid MLB team from within through the draft and Latin American programs.

    Just guessing here, however I think it is much more likely that the Rockies will have to change managers than it would be that J Tracy will suddenly change his management style to fit the Rockies plan when it comes to using and developing young players.

  • Doctor_Christopher | September 2, 2011 | 9:34 pm

    Rich M, that might be a good point. He does prefer vets based on his time here and Dodgerland (Pitts was unwinnable so he gets a pass). But this team is not going to be a veteran team next year, so I hope DOD and the Monforts take that into account.

    As for the three FA vs one solid one (of course the teams that signed Dunn and Werth thought they were getting one solid one…oops) I think goes back to the following the leader nature in both baseball and football. The Giants won a WS by taking cheaper guys with questions – Huff then midseason Burrell and Ross. All of a sudden everyone tries to follow a pattern that worked. The thing is that the Giants merely got lucky, capturing lightening in a bottle. The strategy blew up on them this year. The Rox did get the #2 arm in the FA pool last year – DLR. But point taken.

    Is David Wright heading the wrong way in his career? He has been hurt more often of late. But he is playing in a bad hitters park. I think it would be worth the risk (depending on prospects it would cost) to get him and see if he would thrive here. Then again, part of just wants to trade/steal/kidnap James Loony, turn him into a 3b and see if he can keep doing what he does here.

    I am also wondering which players might get let go rather than pay arbitration given a potentially bad economy next year. Could be some bargains that are good players.