Toronto Blue Jays GM, Ross Atkins, says the team has already talked with Rockies SP Tyler Chatwood.
Plenty of savoury offseason Blue Jays news is trickling in as the GM Meetings begin this week at Disney World, with the Blue Jays’ fearless leader, Ross Atkins, making it clear early on that the “(Blue Jays) are going to get a starter.” There remains many options out there for the club to pursue, both via trade and free agency. Shi Davidi had some excellent analysis of Atkins’ words yesterday over at Sportsnet, where the GM laid out the team’s plans for the 2017-2018 offseason.
Here’s the heaviest quote from that piece, detailing Tyler Chatwood as someone the Blue Jays have already had discussions with:
There’s a number of way to take this information after sifting through the GMspeak, notably:
- “we’re talking with every available starting pitcher” Of course, this is the right thing to say, letting the fans and writers of the team know that they are at least making an effort to tie together the end of the rotation. There were simply too many starts form the likes of Mat Latos, Joe Biagini and Cesar Valdez at through 2017, and while some of them put in some cromulent performances at time, they just don’t amount to a quality starting five.
- “Tyler Chatwood is one starter the Blue jays have engaged” The fact that Chatwood is named personally, along with no one else, is certainly a thing. I wrote a while back that Chatwood might be a solid addition to round out this rotation, moving Joe Biagini back to the bullpen in 2018. More on that at another time, but let’s explore Chatwood for now.
Chatwood serves as one of the more consistent starters for the playoff-bound Colorado Rockies in 2017, posting a 8-15 record (league leader!) and a 4.69 ERA (105 ERA+) over 147-plus innings pitches. He is, and always has been, a league-average type guy who gives up a fair amount of hits and walks, but generally keeps the ball in the park. Advanced stats like him quite a bit more than the traditional ones.
|6 Yr||6 Yr||6 Yr||40||46||4.31||130||113||6||2||1||2||647.2||662||335||310||67||300||438||21||105||4.58||1.485||9.2||0.9||4.2||6.1||1.46|
|NL (||NL (||NL (||34||35||4.18||103||88||6||2||1||2||505.2||496||254||235||53||229||364||15||114||4.49||1.434||8.8||0.9||4.1||6.5||1.59|
|AL (||AL (||AL (||6||11||4.75||27||25||0||0||0||0||142.0||166||81||75||14||71||74||6||79||4.89||1.669||10.5||0.9||4.5||4.7||1.04|
Chatwood’s stats don’t jump off the page at you, but as a number five or six starter – they’re fine. And that is, in essence, exactly what the Blue jays need this offseason. Of course, Chatwood has spent all but 142 innings of his career pitching in the purple pinstripes of the Colorado Rockies, which…complicates things.
The Coors Effect
Look, I try to shy away from the COOORS analysis whenever possible, but when it comes to Chatwood, the difference is downright stark.
Maybe he’s born with it, maybe it’s BABIP. The honest truth, though, is that Coors Field has been a House of Horrors for Chatwood, and the statistics back it up, with gusto. It’s not likely that he would be the acquisition that would push the Blue Jays back into contention after a disastrous 2017, but 150 innings from him starting every fifth would be a solid move for the Blue Jays, as long as they address other issues on the roster as well.
More From Davidi
Davidi’s piece (linked above) also mentioned a reunion with ex-Blue Jay Joe Smith (thanks for Thomas Pannone and Samad Taylor, by the way) and some more quotes on Shohei Otani, who would solve multiple holes on the Blue Jays roster. The former seems plausible and the latter seems like a longshot, but the team would be much improved by bringing in those two studs. Even with the addition of Otani or Chatwood, the team would still need to add maybe tow-to-three more depth arms, just in case.
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Roy’s earliest memories all involve baseball from the early 90’s and the Blue Jays dream teams. He became a Blue Jays fan while watching Carlos Delgado and Shawn Green evolve in Syracuse, NY at the run-down confines of MacArthur Stadium, nestled between highway and swamp. A lifelong baseball player, Roy still plays (P, C, 2B, 3B) in the 25+ Syracuse MSBL for the Liverpool Mets. He watches almost all games with his best buddy Sebastian, a five year old Pug, who could care less.