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  1. #1
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    Default Cubs sign Tyler Chatwood to 3 year contract

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    CCS Donator Omeletpants's Avatar
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    From a Rockies website. Looks like we found another pitcher that cant hit the strike zone

    Whether Tyler Chatwood was a good pitcher in 2017 or not depends on how you squint. In 2016, Chatwood had a stellar road ERA of 1.69 in his first year back from his second Tommy John surgery. But the underlying 2016 road peripherals, where he walked 36 batters in 80 innings while striking out just 61, did not suggest a budding Greg Maddux. When looking at his 2017 efforts, he still posted a decent 3.49 road ERA. However, the very act of squinting is an attempt to focus on one thing which also implies the inability to see anything that you aren’t directly looking at. Things such as being second in the National League in walks allowed, third in the National League in wild pitches, and first in the National League in losses.

    Now, there have been many pitchers who have been successful even while walking people or throwing wild pitches. Generally, they are great at something else, such as striking out batters. Chatwood’s forte was generating groundballs, netting 1.40 per flyball in front of the a stellar Rockies infield defense. However, where those groundballs found infielders’ mitts on the road, to the tune of 6.4 hits per nine innings, those grounders turned into Texas Leaguer base hits at Coors Field, climbing to 10.4 hits per nine. All the other rate stats—walks per nine, strikeouts per nine, even home runs per nine—were virtually identical, no matter where Chatwood pitched. None of those rate stats were all that hot either as Chatwood gave up a career high home runs and walks per nine innings. For a bit of context, there was a point in June when Jordan Lyles, much lamented for hanging on to a roster spot, had better peripherals than Chatwood. Only Chatwood’s good September (more squinting), when he had a 3.12 ERA over 26 innings, helped his overall line.

    On the loss aspect, Chatwood’s bugaboo, especially at Coors Field, was the big inning that would often occur during his second or third time through the order. Even including his road stats from 2017, his ERA in the first three innings was a solid 3.73, but jumped to a decision-killer 6.14 ERA in innings four through six. That’s why Chatwood averaged a shade under 5 and a half innings for his twenty five starts. As apt as Bud Black was in giving starters the early hook, that sweet spot between Chatwood going five innings for the win or getting steamrolled for a loss usually occurred too quick for even Black to stop the snowball.

    The uncertainty of whether Chatwood was good or not was reflected in his season. At varying times he was either the veteran leader of a young staff, then bullpen fodder as better pitchers returned to health, then potential postseason starter as the rookies tired late in the year. As we near the end of the Ranking the Rockies series, there are quite a few pitchers who had better 2017 seasons than Chatwood. In Rockies rotations of the recent past, Chatwood’s 2017 performance might’ve been enough where, like with Lyles for a time, fans could squint and see a good pitcher in the future. But the Rockies have increased their threshhold for what they think is good and Chatwood no longer quite fits that perception.

    2018 Outlook

    Tyler Chatwood is a free agent. There’s a slight chance the Rockies may want him for depth purposes, but he would probably get a stronger contract from another team. Though the combination of short starts plus the uncertainty of pitchers who have had two Tommy John surgeries may dampen his market, but there’s enough there where someone will likely take a peek at him. I’d guess a contract in the 1 year, $9 million range to a 3 year, $20 million range is possible. If not, we know the Padres love ex-Rockies pitchers. Hopefully he lands with a team a good defense, a quick hook, and likes rollercoasters.
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    Senior Member DanTown's Avatar
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    Decent move. Cheaper and less commitment than Cobb even though they’re similar. He has crazy home/road splits so there is some upside potential there. Should be able to be a solid five.

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    I see in a couple places that he was projected to get $ 20 million over 3 years. He got $ 38.

    Good road ERA last two years. Not a lot of innings.

    I see a lot of people question "Does this mean they are out on Ohtani?". While they may not get Ohtani (unlikely?), I see no correlation.

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    I like him better than cobb. He's an elite ground ball guy. His curve and cutter were pretty good for him last year. And unlike cobb he doesn't cost you IFA money/draft pick. 3 years is a little longer than I like but $12 mil AAV isn't that bad for a #5 starter with some upside.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beckdawg View Post
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    I like him better than cobb. He's an elite ground ball guy. His curve and cutter were pretty good for him last year. And unlike cobb he doesn't cost you IFA money/draft pick. 3 years is a little longer than I like but $12 mil AAV isn't that bad for a #5 starter with some upside.
    Cobb has a 3.68 career FIP and Chatwood’s is 4.94. Cobb pitched 179 innings in 2017 and Chatwood has never pitched more than 158. Cobb had a 2.4 WAR in 2017 Chatwood has 5 for his CAREER. There is no way he is better than Cobb. None.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TC in Mississippi View Post
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    Cobb has a 3.68 career FIP and Chatwood’s is 4.94. Cobb pitched 179 innings in 2017 and Chatwood has never pitched more than 158. Cobb had a 2.4 WAR in 2017 Chatwood has 5 for his CAREER. There is no way he is better than Cobb. None.
    That's just like... your opinion man. In all seriousness, the reason I don't like cobb is because he only threw 2 effective pitches the past 2 years. And you can certainly cite Cobb's pre-injury numbers but I feel like you're missing the trees. The reason i like this move better is A) a second round pick for a team with a depleted farm system is a big deal not to mention the $500k in IFA money can make a difference. B) I don't think Cobb's underlying numbers are anywhere as good as his results. He had a 6.42 k/9 last year and a 2.21 BB/9 with a really bad soft/hard contact rate. Think his soft contact rate was top 5 worst and his hard contact rate was basically the same. C) Cobb is likely to cost more money.

    So we're not even talking apples to apples here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beckdawg View Post
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    That's just like... your opinion man. In all seriousness, the reason I don't like cobb is because he only threw 2 effective pitches the past 2 years. And you can certainly cite Cobb's pre-injury numbers but I feel like you're missing the trees. The reason i like this move better is A) a second round pick for a team with a depleted farm system is a big deal not to mention the $500k in IFA money can make a difference. B) I don't think Cobb's underlying numbers are anywhere as good as his results. He had a 6.42 k/9 last year and a 2.21 BB/9 with a really bad soft/hard contact rate. Think his soft contact rate was top 5 worst and his hard contact rate was basically the same. C) Cobb is likely to cost more money.

    So we're not even talking apples to apples here.
    I get the Cobb money thing but I don’t think Chatwood is even an upgrade from Lackey at 5,or at least not much of one. His FIP in 2017 was 4.94 to Lackey’s 5.30and when Lackey was effective in 2016 his FIP was 3.81.plus it’s not like this is a cheap deal, it’s not expensive but it isn’t nothing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TC in Mississippi View Post
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    I get the Cobb money thing but I don’t think Chatwood is even an upgrade from Lackey at 5,or at least not much of one. His FIP in 2017 was 4.94 to Lackey’s 5.30and when Lackey was effective in 2016 his FIP was 3.81.plus it’s not like this is a cheap deal, it’s not expensive but it isn’t nothing.
    Well given i know you're one of the people who is willing to have a legit conversation about these type of things I'll engage. First thing I'll point you towards is this. So if you're arguing Chatwood doesn't have results then sure. Cobb has produced better results. But I think you can often get sucked into previous results too far. With regard to Cobb my personal feeling is he's just not the same pitcher he was pre-injury and the 2 pitch pitcher he was post injury has dangerously scary underlying numbers. If you look at his pitch value, pre injury his change up had 4 straight seasons over 1.31. Being over 1 is a really good value. The past 2 years that change up has been -0.24 and -1.25. And the thing is that change up was his out pitch. In the 4 years prior to getting hurt his fastball value was -0.38, -0.60, 0.49 and -0.38. In other words it routinely was below average but not terribly bad. His curve all pre injury was 0.52, -0.17, 0.18 and -0.12. In other words, average or slightly above. The past two years those pitches have been -3.56/0.48 on the fastball and -1.35/0.62 on his curve and obviously his change up MASSIVELY declined. When you add that to the fact he's basically lost a lot in terms of hard/soft contact rate it all makes sense. He doesn't have swing and miss stuff anymore so when players do make contact they CRUSH him.

    Now sure maybe you argue it's only been a year and maybe that change up comes back. But I can just as easily suggest what if his fastball/curve get worse? They've never been particularly good pitches to begin with and if they get worse you could very quickly run into a guy who just can't get players out and who gets crushed in the zone.

    On Chatwood, I think he's a pure upside play. First of all, he's a curve ball pitcher and coors is notoriously difficult on curve ball pitchers. My biggest worry with his is health but let's be real here, it's not like Cobb has a clean history himself. And honestly the cubs have already shown the willingness to use a 6th starter more than other teams. So, you can limit some of that exposure on Chatwood. We'll see what happens on Ohtani but you could realistically have Monty throw 10-15 starts and cut away 5-8 starts from Ohtani/Chatwood if they land Ohtani.

    And of course then we're talking money. It's fairly well assumed given the amount of interest cobb seems to be generating he probably gets at least 4/$60 and maybe 5 years at $16+ mil. Aside from the draft pick penalty that's a lot more money for a guy who has his own large set of questions. I just think Chatwood at $12 mil for 3 years is a reasonable gamble. His pitches have been better than his results. He's a guy who's been stuck in Coors which never helps matters. And he's an extreme ground ball guy going to the best defense in baseball. Is he going to win a cy young with the cubs? No but think you're underselling his potential.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beckdawg View Post
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    I like him better than cobb. He's an elite ground ball guy. His curve and cutter were pretty good for him last year. And unlike cobb he doesn't cost you IFA money/draft pick. 3 years is a little longer than I like but $12 mil AAV isn't that bad for a #5 starter with some upside.
    I'm pretty sure that Theo see's something in the stats that makes him think he can excel. I think you may be be right (don't know the stats) if the ground balls are correct. I've always said that you want good ground ball pitchers at Wrigley so I like this so far. I also like the 95 mph fastball he comes with. I always said that velocity can dictate.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bear Pride View Post
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    I'm pretty sure that Theo see's something in the stats that makes him think he can excel. I think you may be be right (don't know the stats) if the ground balls are correct. I've always said that you want good ground ball pitchers at Wrigley so I like this so far. I also like the 95 mph fastball he comes with. I always said that velocity can dictate.
    He dropped his arm slot in Col. He was more over the top with a curve before but coors hates curves and hates ball movement.

    But the general thought is to get his arm slot up where his high spin rate will do what it is supposed to and also will create more downward movement on his curve.

    In coors he was forced into a cutter/sinker guy due to the park.

    I wouldn't be shocked if he becomes another Arrieta. He has the toolset Jake has and just needs some readjustments

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    Quote Originally Posted by CSF77 View Post
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    He dropped his arm slot in Col. He was more over the top with a curve before but coors hates curves and hates ball movement.

    But the general thought is to get his arm slot up where his high spin rate will do what it is supposed to and also will create more downward movement on his curve.

    In coors he was forced into a cutter/sinker guy due to the park.

    I wouldn't be shocked if he becomes another Arrieta. He has the toolset Jake has and just needs some readjustments
    That's what I was thinking. I hope so!
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    Iím ok with him as a 5. A bit long in a deal IMO though. I see Alzolay as 2 years out at most and he could be used to net another in a trade if they miss out on Ohtani.

    I still see them as a underdog in the sweepstakes based off of location and desire for a small market. So most likely they will have to prepare to deal in the meetings. And I see Happ and Alzolay as their chips.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CSF77 View Post
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    I’m ok with him as a 5. A bit long in a deal IMO though. I see Alzolay as 2 years out at most and he could be used to net another in a trade if they miss out on Ohtani.

    I still see them as a underdog in the sweepstakes based off of location and desire for a small market. So most likely they will have to prepare to deal in the meetings. And I see Happ and Alzolay as their chips.
    I wouldn't worry too much about Alzolay. To start with he could very realistically end up being a trade piece. For another, if it gets to the point where he is still around and beating on the door if you end up having "too much" pitching someone else is always in need. For example let's say Alzolay hangs around in AA for the next 1.5 or so years. You'd then have Chatwood at like 1.5 years at $18 mil which is pretty attractive. Someone would give you something decent for that if again he is decent. If he's just bad, cutting him after year 2 isn't a big deal either.

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    Good signing hopefully he will be able to solidify the BOR.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TL1961 View Post
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    Discuss
    2017 8W 15L 4.69ERA! Oh goodie

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ari Bear View Post
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    2017 8W 15L 4.69ERA! Oh goodie

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    His 2.57 ERA away from Coors the last two years is tied with Strasburg for 2nd best road ERA in the league behind some guy named Kershaw.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TL1961 View Post
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    His 2.57 ERA away from Coors the last two years is tied with Strasburg for 2nd best road ERA in the league behind some guy named Kershaw.
    Interesting.

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    Looks like the Cubs were on Mikolas and lost to the Cards on him. They were not going to lose on Chatwood.

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    Quote Originally Posted by beckdawg View Post
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    I wouldn't worry too much about Alzolay. To start with he could very realistically end up being a trade piece. For another, if it gets to the point where he is still around and beating on the door if you end up having "too much" pitching someone else is always in need. For example let's say Alzolay hangs around in AA for the next 1.5 or so years. You'd then have Chatwood at like 1.5 years at $18 mil which is pretty attractive. Someone would give you something decent for that if again he is decent. If he's just bad, cutting him after year 2 isn't a big deal either.
    I believe the reality is Alzolay will be in Iowa just like Tseng was. Tseng lost velocity and ended up repeating AA. just like Clifton lost velocity last year. He was gunned in the mid 80ís down from the mid 90ís in MB.

    Theo will not hold back talent but the talent has to kick the door open. Theo is not opening any doors for them.

    Just last year: Tseng/Maples. Both kicked the door in and both got a cup of joe as a reward.

    Happ kicked the door in and stuck

    Candy kept on bouncing back and forth as he kicked the door in and it slapped him back to Iowa. Same thing with Caratini as we saw with 2 back up catchers added last year.

    These kids have to prove themselves all of the time and honestly there is no one guaranteed a rotation spot in the pipeline. They have to take the job and run with it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CSF77 View Post
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    These kids have to prove themselves all of the time and honestly there is no one guaranteed a rotation spot in the pipeline. They have to take the job and run with it.
    Think this nails it. And if that does happen it's just a matter of moving around other parts. But either way, I like that Chatwood deal. They appear to really like his stuff based on Theo's comments. I also have to imagine if you put an extreme ground ball guy in front of the cubs defense good things are going to happen. So, even if Chatwood isn't a long term fixture, you could very easily raise his value enough that he brings back something interesting if you do dump him and go younger.

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    Jesse Rogers

    @ESPNChiCubs
    Theo said they've been after Chatwood for years: "His name has popped up in trade attempts."
    There's this also.

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