MLB Trade Deadline | Indian Givers Gettin’ Ubaldo

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 Cleveland Indians

Cleveland IndiansUbaldo 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.

Colorado RockiesAlex 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.

He’s an extreme GB pitcher with GB rates of over 50% at each stop. His splitter is his knock out pitch and the re-addition of his slider gives him a put away that had been lacking since being drafted. The development of the 3rd pitch now gives me hope that I lacked in White remaining a starter. Not only can he stick as a starter but I believe has the repertoire to be successful in the middle of a quality rotation in Colorado and eat innings based on his GB rates. Those GB rates will be key to his Mile High survival and success.

Drew Pomeranz, LHP Colorado Rockies

Colorado RockiesDrew 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.

He’s already 22, so he’s a step behind the development of White at this point.  However, Pomeranz upside is higher than Alex White and if the Rockies are now patient with him he could develop into a #2 starter with high K rates as witnessed by his 30% K rate this year. He has the two needed pitches to put away major league hitters already so the CU will give him the 3rd to keep right handed hitters off balance and allow him to work deep into games.
Worst case scenario for Pomeranz and the Rockies would be a solid lefty specialist. That would be a major failure because there is a major league starter in this skill set waiting to be refined.

Colorado RockiesJoe 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.

Colorado RockiesMatt 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.

I was born and raised in NYC. My father was a diehard Yankees fan but not biased and raised me to love the game more than any one team. For that I'm truly thankful to him. My love for the game runs deep, and after crunching numbers all day long, I tend to spend my nights at the FSL ballparks.


One Response to “MLB Trade Deadline | Indian Givers Gettin’ Ubaldo”

  1. Joe Telegen

    Aug 03. 2011

    Cleveland certainly seems to be all-in this year. The Pomeranz part, I think, is most startling given how recently he was highly picked (and that he might not even be the best prospect in the deal). Compare Cleveland’s deadline approach to that of the Yankees.

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