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August 15, 2012

BP Unfiltered

Garbage In, Guthrie Out

by Ben Lindbergh

On July 20th, the Rockies traded Jeremy Guthrie to the Royals for Jonathan Sanchez. It wasn't so much a change-of-scenery trade as it was synchronized self-preservation, as if both teams' rosters reflexively rejected a toxic substance and instinctively sent it somewhere, anywhere else. The two starters' stats, before the trade:

Sanchez: 53 1/3 IP, 6.1 K/9, 7.4 BB/9, 7.76 ERA (-0.7 WARP)
Guthrie: 90 2/3 IP, 4.5 K/9, 3.1 BB/9, 6.35 ERA (-1.0 WARP)

And since the trade?

Sanchez: 11 1/3 IP, 7.1 K/9, 7.1, BB/9, 9.53 ERA (-0.2 WARP)
Guthrie: 31 1/3 IP, 7.5 K/9, 2.0 BB/9, 4.02 ERA (0.4 WARP)

In his last three starts for Kansas City, Guthrie has allowed three runs in 21 innings against three playoff contenders (the Rangers, White Sox, and A's), striking out 18 and walking four. As Matthew Pouliot points out, Guthrie has been considerably better than Zack Greinke, Ryan Dempster, Anibal Sanchez, and Francisco Liriano since switching teams, even though all four of those starters, unlike Guthrie, were traded for players who weren't actively sabotaging their teams.

In other news, I'm working on a theory about Coors Field being a tough place to pitch.

Ben Lindbergh is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Ben's other articles. You can contact Ben by clicking here

Related Content:  Jeremy Guthrie,  Trade Deadline

4 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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TGisriel

When the Orioles traded Guthrie to Colorado, I was surprised Colorado wanted him. He was generally overrated as the Orioles best pitcher, which at the time was faint praise indeed. Moreover, Guthrie is a fly ball pitcher.

As a fly ball pitcher, I expected Guthrie to be a disaster in Colorado.

I also expected Hammel to improve outside of Colorado because of his substantial home road splits when in Colorado. In Baltimore Hammel has been better than I expected.

Aug 15, 2012 08:15 AM
rating: 0
 
Richard Bergstrom

I'm working on a theory that the Rockies enjoy shooting themselves in the foot.

They went from Hammel to Guthrie. Then, not realizing they've done a horrible job with getting the pitchers they have to "work", took a fix-up project in Sanchez. At least Guthrie was providing some innings.

They traded Iannetta for a fungible Chatwood.

They let Seth Smith go so they could overpay for similar production from Cuddyer.

Now they have Rosario sitting on the bench for Ramon Hernandez with a rumor that Yorvit Torrealba will be coming back.

But at least they stopped demoting Dexter Fowler or batting him 8th.

Aug 15, 2012 09:39 AM
rating: 1
 
eighteen

Trying to find sense or purpose in Dan O'Dowd's decision-making is a fool's errand.

Aug 15, 2012 10:12 AM
rating: 0
 
Richard Bergstrom

The ironic thing is that the Rockies, at one point, were considered innovative.

Now, you have a new ownership team in LA, Sabean actually building a lineup without having a ton of 40 year old vets, and the Padres have rookie pitchers _and_ hitters coming out of their ears. Oh, and you still have O'Dowd and Tracy...

Aug 15, 2012 10:16 AM
rating: 0
 
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PITCHf/x Profile: Diss... (08/14)
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