Wow. When I first saw this I thought what can the Rockies be thinking. This is the same Ubaldo Jimenez that posted a 4.3 WAR, 5.7 WAR and a 6.3 WAR in the last 3 years. Or is it. According to pitch f/x data Ubaldo has lost an average of 3 MPH on his fastball. That could easily be a cause of concern or it could be nothing at all. That still doesn’t justify trading a starting pitcher who has an amazingly team friendly contract through 2013 with an option for 2014. By getting traded Ubaldo can either exersise or decline the option.
The Rockies did get two very nice pitching prospects in Alex White and Drew Pomeranz. This year in Cleveland’s triple A White has posted a 2.27 FIP, his .295 BABIP shows that his dominance is quite real. He’s striking out over 10 batters every 9 innings and walking only 1.9. It is a small sample size, only 23.2 innings but still very incouraging. In 3 starts in the majors this year White showed potential but still struggled, posting a 5.66 FIP. It was only 15 innings so remember thats still a really small sample size. Currently he’s on the DL with a finger injury. Pomeranz has been rediculous in A ball and double A ball this year. In 15 games in A ball he’s posted a 2.36 FIP. He struck out 11.1 batters per 9 and walked 3.74. He did such a good job that the Indians brought him up to double A and did the same thing. In 3 starts he posted a 2.99 FIP and struck out over 10 per 9 whle walking a little over 3. Remember though, small sample size. Both project as top of the rotation starters in the majors. I’m not sure if that is enough for Jimenez if he indeed turns out to be healthy. The other prospects, 1B Matt McBride and SP Joe Gardner are mid-level/lower-level prospects. I don’t know much about either to be honest.
While the loss in velocity is a concern all his other numbers aren’t too far off career norms. His 3.55 FIP is consistent with his career averages as is his xFIP. His K% and BB% are in line with his career averages as well. While his BABIP is a little high it’s nothing to be worried about. If Ubaldo turns out to be fine then Cleveland got a very good pitcher.