The general consensus among the Twitterati yesterday and this morning was that the Reds may have Chapman in the 2011 rotation, but seeing how raw he is, it’s not a given. Reds GM Walt Jocketty scoffs at your conservatism:
As far as when he’ll be on the mound at Great American
Ball Park, Jocketty said he wants to get Chapman to start working with
catcher Ramon Hernandez and hopes things move quickly.
Jocketty said that hopefully Chapman is a Top 5 starters. If not,
he’ll start in the minors and hopefully be in the rotation in the near
So the hope is that he breaks camp in the rotation, but they’ll settle for later in 2010. Based on what we’ve heard about Chapman that seems optimistic. I mean, the dude had better figure out how to throw a changeup pretty quickly, because major league hitters can handle 100 m.p.h. gas if they know it’s coming.
But just as gambling on expensive young talent with an upside represents a competitive advantage for sub-.500 teams with low payrolls, maybe rushing that talent and squeezing as much juice out of them before they sign with the Yankees is a competitive advantage as well.
For those who want it, video of the Aroldis Chapman press conference from Cincy today can be seen here.
Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.
Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.
Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.
It’s been a tough season for the mythology of Jonny Gomes‘ veteran clubhouse savior reputation.
First he signed with the rebuilding Braves and performed poorly while Atlanta fell apart after a surprisingly decent start. Then he was traded to the Royals, for whom he played just 12 games and hit .167. And now Kansas City has left Gomes off the ALDS roster.
It makes sense, though. Gomes’ only real use to the Royals would be as a pinch-hitter versus left-handed pitching, but manager Ned Yost rarely pinch-hits and will no doubt be more willing to use 25th man Terrance Gore as a pinch-runner in the late innings.
Beyond that, not many surprises on the Royals’ roster for their series against the Astros. They went with 11 pitchers, which means both Chris Young and Kris Medlen are on the roster. Jeremy Guthrie is not.