Indian Givers Gettin’ Ubaldo
In a deal that some were unsure would materialize, the Indians aquired Colorado Rockies Ace Ubaldo Jimenez for four prospects. The Rockies had been adamant about getting 3 elite level prospects from clubs interested in Jimenez, but they lowered their sights just a little at the deadline and received Alex White, RHP and Drew Pomeranz, LHP who can be considered elite level along with Joe Gardner, RHP and Matty McBride, OF. Pomeranz will be the PTBNL in case you’re wondering. Let’s take a closer look at the pieces to this deadline deal puzzle.
Ubaldo Jimenez, RHP (27) is having an off year in 2011. His 4.20 ERA is almost 1.5 points higher than his Cy Young contending 2.88 of last year. But his K% is actually almost even and his bb% is actually a touch down from last year. His GB% is about even as well. So what’s the problem. A heavy workload in 2010 plus some bad luck. His .320 BABIP is a little high for Jimenez and his 3.57 FIP shows that his ERA is currently artificially inflated. He should see a resurgence in the second half and his contract is very welcoming for the Indians. He’s under team control through 2013 and his salary will not approach $10mm during that period.
Alex White, RHP (22) is ready to take over at the back end of the rotation as long as he’s healthy. White is only 22 and has handled AAA better than he did AA which wasn’t bad either. His brief stint in Cleveland showed some holes but was far from a disappointment. White checked in at #50 on our Top 100 MLB Prospects for 2011.
Drew Pomeranz, LHP (22) was the the Indians #1 pick in 2010 got off to a fast start for the Kinston Indians who play A ball in the Carolina League and was right on pace after a jump to Double-A. He slotted in at #55 on our Top 100 MLB Prospect List this preseason. While Pomeranz is a College draftee he does still have plenty of work to do in the minors before he’ll be ready to face major league lineups more than one time through. His plus fastball and plus 12-6 curveball are both top pitches but his command is erratic at times and his changeup needs major refinement.
Joe Gardner, RHP (23) is a big righty that came onto the scene last season in the Midwest League. He came back down to earth in High A Kingston but still performed well. A disturbing trend though has been his drop in K rate at each level and it is currently at a level that will not breed success regardless of his GB rate which is still at 52%. But a high BABIP could help him bring down the 4.99 ERA. He will need to keep the 2 seamer working and the groundballs coming in the future to find success in Colorado. So some additional time in Double-A to work on the secondaries and command of the above average fastball and he could make some starts at the back end of the rotation but more likely become a good middle man.
Matt McBride, OF (26) is an odd choice for the Rockies to get this deal completed. He’s a 26 year old showing moderate success in the Double-A where he is showing some nice power. But its not the first time he’s done so. Come to think about it, we’re talking about the third time through Double-A for McBride. I don’t think he’s more than a bench bat in his prime, which is right around the corner.
Check back soon for Prospect Instinct on Drew Pomeranz and Alex White plus looks at young Cardinals fireballer Carlos Martinez who was lighting up the radar guns tonight in the FSL in his matchup with Phillies top prospect Brody Colvin.