Why the Rox Starters Should Boycott

You know your team is having a bad year when even a big win against baseball’s top team comes with self-imposed controversy.

Such is life as a Rockies Fan, circa 2012.

Coming into Arlington the team had pretty much the exact inverse relationship to the Rangers record (26-42 vs 43-27), so it came as no surprise that the team would drop the first game in ho-hum fashion, losing 4-1 and handing Oswalt his first win as a Ranger.

Saturday, day six of the “4 Man Laughing Stock Rotation” experiment, figured to be more of the same.

That is until the team decided to turn Ranger Stadium into a Coors Field batting practice session.

The hitting got interesting in the top of the third, with Jordan Pacheco up and one out.  He started what turned into a string of singles that saw the team put up four runs.  Cargo, Giambi, Colvin and Nelson all got in on the action.

Then in the top of the fourth Dex, Johnny, Jordan and Cuddy combined to score three more with the doubles by the Sparkplug and Cuddyer making the highlights.

Not finished yet, a rarity for a team that scores early but not often, the top of the fifth was just as exciting, if not more so, thanks to the long ball.  Nelson (double), Nieves (HR) and Dex (HR) in back-to-back fashion, brought the score to 11-1.

Surely 10 more runs than your opponent is enough, right?

And this is where the glaring error in the “4 man, 75 pitch” experiment was placed front and center.

ANY pitcher starting a game, when their own team has a 10 run lead, can usually expect to walk with the win – barring injury or illness.

That is, any pitcher but Mr. O’Dowd’s starting four.

HISTORY LESSON FOR THE NIGHT: A starting pitcher, in order to get the win, must complete five innings in order to be eligible for the win.

KEY STAT FOR THE NIGHT: In order for a pitcher, who is on a 75 pitch count limit, to complete five innings, he must pitch (on average) 15 pitches per inning.

Now, pitch counts are extremely controversial.  With many detractors, as well as history showing how arbitrary and inane it is, it is obviously only truly loved by agents and owners, both wanting to “protect” their prized possessions.

Ironically, one of the biggest voices against pitch counts is none-other than Rangers Owner, and pitching legend, Nolan Ryan.

Which brings us to why the Rockies starting staff should boycott the mound until this perfect storm of stupidity has passed.

Josh Outman had pitched extremely effectively through four, giving up only one run on five hits.  Four of the five hits were singles, with the only run coming off a solo HR in the fourth.  He had a perfect third inning, not to mention striking out Josh Hamilton in the first.

Outman in the 4th - Image by Rox Addict
Outman in the 4th - image by Rox Addict

Outman was sitting at 69 pitches after four and the team was sporting a 10 run lead.

So, Tracy hands him the ball and, “told him it was his inning”.

It was an inning that began well, with a fly out and a strike out (of Hamilton again) in-between a single and a walk.  But then the cracks started to show in the paint.

Two back-to-back RBI singles is all it takes for Tracy to un-tell him it is his inning.

The team is still up by eight runs with two outs, but that doesn’t matter, because the 75 pitch count trumps the win any day of the week, and twice on Sunday.

Enter Ottavino, exit ball stage center and instantly the Rangers are three runs closer to the Rockies.  Five pitches later and another run is shaved off the lead.

Once the dust settled, the Rangers put a six-spot on the scoreboard and were only down 11-7 in the fifth.  Outman was charged with five of the runs, although Ottavino handed him two with his poorly placed slider.

The Rockies were able to hold the lead, thanks in part to excellent pitching by the Killer B’s (Brothers, Belisle and Betancourt), but Outman didn’t get the win.

And that is exactly why Outman, and the rest of them, should boycott the season.  Obviously it would never happen, since no pitcher wants to not pitch.  But, one look at the lines of the starting four come season end, and you’d think with all of the microscopic numbers bound to be in the W column, it will seem like none of them really pitched anyway.

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Miketober
Miketober
8 years ago

“Unless you live it day in and day out you really just don’t have a true grasp of completely understanding what we’re trying to do here.” – DOD “Honestly I’m really not concerned with what everybody thinks all the time.” – DOD So there you have it fellow RWO-ers. We just don’t have the ability to understand how things work with the Rockies. (According to DOD, Apodaca has been here long enough to get it but MFLJT has not.) Luckily… Read more »

sdcarp
sdcarp
8 years ago

I’m not always a Woody Paige fan, but here’s a link to his article in today’s DP:

http://www.denverpost.com/paige/ci_20926027/paige-how-fix-dan-odowds-mess-rockies-general?source=rss

Hammer > meet nail!

When and if (big “if”) the Rox do change leadership, I continue to say look to the Texas Rangers for a little guidance – or flat out steal some of their people. They live within a similar “extreme” environment where is was not going to be possible to build a consistent winner. Obviously they’ve done some things correctly.

Agbayani
Agbayani
8 years ago

Hate to say it, but Woody is right this time. Particularly regarding the position players and the need to get Colvin/Pacheco/Nelson/Rosario in there essentially full time. This is an extended big league tryout for those guys. As a practical matter, Cuddyer isn’t going anywhere though. He was signed to a somewhat above-market deal, he’s performed as expected (but not better than expected), and I doubt you’d find any takers for him. As for the pitching staff: a bit early I… Read more »

EdtheUmp
EdtheUmp
8 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

Agb…you(and jaredean)are right on the money!!

egossage
egossage
8 years ago
Reply to  Agbayani

i would trade Tulo before I traded cargo

Batgirl
Batgirl
8 years ago

Great comments, Jared. Also enjoyed the brutally honest DP Paige article. He even calls out the shills for ROOT and KOA – loved that, as I just can’t listen to them anymore. I mostly agree with Paige’s recs except about Cuddyer. We definitely overpaid (see: Willingham) but he has been a good pickup and is the only approving nod I’ll give to their overblown obsession with improving club culture. But yes please trade Giambi and Scutaro and Hernandez and let… Read more »

EdtheUmp
EdtheUmp
8 years ago
Reply to  Batgirl

BGiCS…you are spot on, as usual. Liked the shill reference as well…muting the TV has never felt so good…man are they terrible.

ProgMatinee
ProgMatinee
8 years ago

I second the request for a season ticket holder to report back on the DOD and Monfort call. Don’t have tix this year, so can’t do it myself. The Cuddyer move is mostly a bad move because we have a bucket load of OF prospects and it was an overpay. I don’t have any negative comments about Cuddyer himself. He’s played fine. Just a dumb, short sighted move on O’Dowd’s part. As was Scutaro. It doesn’t make sense to block… Read more »

Jeem
Jeem
8 years ago

OK look. The 4-man/75-pitch thing is being deployed for psychological reasons. You’ve got four guys it can easily be argued are not major league pitchers. They’ve been getting regularly shelled and are under extreme pressure (of their own making). What they are doing is giving the starters a fixed scope of work: give me 75 competent pitches and we’ll take it from there. Francis’ outing Thursday was emblematic of what they are hoping for. So hopefully after four or five… Read more »

IggyRox
IggyRox
8 years ago
Reply to  Jeem

I agree with everything you said, Jeem. You nailed it. While Woody makes some good points, he is prone to hyperbole as well as throwing a bunch of you-know-what against the wall and whatever sticks, he takes credit for the idea. I think that’s what he was doing with today’s column, so when the inevitable comes to pass, he can puff out his chest and say, “see? I told ya so!”. I would dump Dan and most of the coaching… Read more »

Jeem
Jeem
8 years ago
Reply to  IggyRox

Oops. Vinny is on the staff? By all means keep Vinny.

Agbayani
Agbayani
8 years ago

Prog, disagree on Scutaro. He was, on paper, a very significant upgrade over any in-house option. He’s on a 1-year contract. We gave up nothing of value to get him. We can trade him at any time, probably for more than what we gave up to get him. Given that the club’s out of contention and he won’t be back anyway, there’s just no reason to keep him around past the trade deadline. Pacheco playing 1B? I’m fine with that… Read more »

TJinPhoenix
TJinPhoenix
8 years ago

“…because the 75 pitch count trumps the win any day of the week, and twice on Sunday.”

JD-does that mean that today’s starter will only get 37 1/2 pitches today? 🙂 I never was a math major…..

Mike Raysfan
Mike Raysfan
8 years ago

“Now, pitch counts are extremely controversial. With many detractors, as well as history showing how arbitrary and inane it is, it is obviously only truly loved by agents and owners, both wanting to “protect” their prized possessions”

Agreed jare. Also loved by the media because it gives them an on air source of controversy. They get to yammer about nothing.

Julian
Julian
8 years ago

Pomeranz pitched 51/3 innings today, gave up just one hit, a single, but walked 4 and needed 101 pitches to get through 5 1/3 innings. So, he appears to be moving in the right direction. Did any of you guys see the game? I suspect it won’t be long before we see him in a Rockies uniform.

Bill
Bill
8 years ago

By the way two ex Rox who I don’t think we got squat for won games for the Red Sox the last two games. Franklin Morales yesterday and Aaron Cook today. And yeah I know Morales was very maddening when he was here and Cook was just a shadow of himself but Fenway isn’t the easiest place to pitch either. Coors Field gets alot of the blame and in today’s DP Renck quotes DoD as blaming Coors for being like… Read more »

Julian
Julian
8 years ago

I was just reading MLB Trade Rumors. It talked about the Pirates shopping Kevin Correia and needing an offensive upgrade and maybe being interested in a player like Marco Scutaro. Is Correia an upgrade in the rotation for us? Could there be a trade there that would be a win/win?

Agbayani
Agbayani
8 years ago

Yes, Correia is an upgrade, in the same way that Jeff Francis was an upgrade. Which is not the kind of upgrade we should care about. Give me a prospect, any reasonable prospect …

ProgMatinee
ProgMatinee
8 years ago

I think Correia is a FA anyway, so really no incentive for the Rox to go after him.

Liz
Liz
8 years ago

Hi guys, I am tired to moaning about the team and agree with almost all the comments, so instead I am going to moan about Jeff Huston is it just me or is he the most annoying person ever? He has played every position for every team and know exactly what every player is thinking. I could scream listening to him for any length of time. I turn off the volume and the next thing I know some call/lack there… Read more »

ProgMatinee
ProgMatinee
8 years ago
Reply to  Liz

What is most annoying:

Drew Goodman
George Frazier
Jenny Cavnar
Jeff Huson
Hawk Harrelson
Beavis
Butthead
Rachel Black (of “It’s Friday” fame)
Fran Drescher
Hemmoroids

Bat Cat
Bat Cat
8 years ago
Reply to  ProgMatinee

Jack Corrigan and Jerry Schemmel should be on the list …

DrRockies
Editor
DrRockies
8 years ago

puzzled by those who think Cuddyer wasn’t a good sign. Now I tend to agree that he signed for a high salary but let’s not fault him. He has produced for the team and continues to in the areas he was noted for..he certainly wasn’t know for hitting 40 HRs so I don’t get worked up when he doesn’t. I don’t fault anyone for signing a big contract…get what you can. Now those who offer those contracts..that is a different… Read more »

ProgMatinee
ProgMatinee
8 years ago
Reply to  DrRockies

IMO its a bad signing because it was pointless. So, OK, his superb leadership and hustle means we lose 100 instead of 103 games. Great. We have young and underused prospects that need to play. I guess I’d rather have a 100 loss team that develops prospects than one that is flush with vets who block the future from getting better. If he had 5 years left, maybe its a good signing, but does anyone think he’ll be here by… Read more »

ProgMatinee
ProgMatinee
8 years ago
Reply to  jaredean

Yeah, but how else do you rate someone’s job performance other than the results?

If good intentions were enough to judge success then I guess Dan O’Dowd really is the best in the business.

sabrchip
sabrchip
8 years ago

1. George Frazier
1. tie Jeff Huson
3. tie Beavis & Butthead
4. Hemmoroids
5. Hawk Harrelson
6. Drew Goodman
7. Jenny Cavnar

Don’t even know who these folks are
Rachel Black (of “It’s Friday” fame)
Fran Drescher

Agbayani
Agbayani
8 years ago

Prog is right. Why commit 33 million bucks over 3 years to an average rightfielder when (1) we already had one of those for much cheaper (2) A’s should be obvious to anyone, this club had far bigger problems than getting an expensive minor upgrade in rightfield. I have no problem with Cuddy, and I really like him as a player. But face facts: he was supposed to deliver more than his paper value through his intangibles like improving clubhouse… Read more »

Special Ed
Special Ed
8 years ago

Hey guys… first posting since the old site went away…. ya know… I understand the logic of playing cheaper players/prospects instead of guys like Cuddy. In some ways I agree with it. However, I’m tired of my major league team being the place where I train AAA players how to play in the Springs. (it’s an illustration of how bad the organization is) Bottom line, Odowd has failed to fill the system with any quality depth. There are at best… Read more »

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