Yesterday here at East Village Times we took a look at the Padres returning options for the rotation.
Out of that group of Luis Perdomo, Christian Friedrich, Paul Clemens, Jarred Cosart, Clayton Richard, and Cesar Vargas, the Padres could form a decent enough major league rotation. In fact, they did just that in 2016, although decent may be a bit of a stretch. Even though the Padres had enough pitchers to fill a rotation this year, the team went out and brought in just as many pitchers as they already had as surefire options for 2017.
Despite having a good amount of decent options, the Padres went out and acquired six more decent options, making what was a muddled 2016 rotation even more muddled. Having options is certainly good, especially when the average MLB team use 10+ pitchers in any given season.
With ten to fifteen candidates for meaningful big league innings in 2017, the Padres are certainly better off for it. Without further ado, here’s a look at the six new pitching additions the Padres made to the roster this off-season.
In sticking with our previous theme of inconsistency, the Padres brought in one of the most inconsistent pitchers they could in right-hander, Jhoulys Chacin. Chacin pitched for the Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 2016, and he was a picture of volatility. Here’s a listing of Chacin’s ERA numbers by month: 3.27, 5.23, 8.59, 4.19, 5.79, and 2.61. So Chacin had a good April, an even better September, and an awful stretch from May-August.
Going into this season, it’s really hard to know what the Padres are getting. Are they getting the Chacin that was good with the Rockies or the one who was bad with the Rockies? Are they getting the Chacin that could barely find a job in 2014-2015 or the one who dominated hitters over his last five starts of 2016 with the Angels? Time will only tell. What’s clear is that Chacin signed his contract with the intention of starting, and the Padres will give him every chance to do that. I say he has a pretty good chance of making that happen.
Of all the Padres’ new additions, Cahill may just be the biggest wildcard of them all. I wrote about the Padres signing of Cahill at length in a piece earlier this off-season, but it still helps to revisit that discussion. In that piece, I described Cahill’s career as wild and wacky, and it really has been. Even though he is only 29 years old, it seems as though Cahill has been in the league forever, as he made his major league debut way back in 2009, at just 21 years old. Over his nine years in or around the majors, Cahill has pitched for four different organizations. After his career seemingly fell apart in Arizona, Cahill finally found himself back in the bigs out of the bullpen with the Cubs over the last two seasons.
Although Cahill found great success in 2016 out of the Cubs bullpen, with a 2.74 ERA over 65 and 2/3 innings, he was looking for a contract as a starter this off-season. With a wide open rotation, the Padres were willing to give him that chance. In his first appearance of the spring, Cahill threw two shutout innings for the Padres, looking effective in the process. It remains to be seen whether or not Cahill can maintain his career renaissance in the rotation in San Diego, but he has as good a chance as just about anybody in Peoria.
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