Tag:Jaime Garcia
Posted on: November 8, 2010 2:56 pm
Edited on: November 8, 2010 5:22 pm

MLB Facts and Rumors votes on Rookie of the Year

Feliz With the major baseball awards being announced next week, MLB Facts and Rumors will reveal their choices this week for the awards. Today, Evan, David and Trent name their Rookie of the Year selections. At the end of the article, the overall MLB Facts and Rumors winner will be announced using a points system, with the No. 1 selection receiving three points, down to No. 3 receiving 1.

Both the AL and NL rookie of the year race is generally down to two favorites. The AL has Neftali Feliz, the Rangers' closer doing battle against center fielder Austin Jackson of the Tigers. In the National League, it was a banner year for rookies but the two top candidates are catcher Buster Posey of the World Champion Giants and right fielder Jason Heyward of the Braves.


David Andriesen

1. CL Neftali Feliz, TEX
2. CF Austin Jackson, DET
3. SP Brian Matusz, BAL

Feliz saved 40 games, more than any rookie in history. Of course, rookie closers aren’t exactly commonplace, but that’s impressive. Jackson tailed off a bit late in the season but definitely stands above the other position players.

Evan Brunell
1. CF Austin Jackson, DET
2. CL Neftali Feliz, TEX
3. SP Brian Matusz, BAL

A 22-year-old saving 40 games for a division winner is no small feat. However, as impressive as his season was, I can't give his 269 total batters faced the nod over Jackson's 675 plate appearances of a .745 OPS and top-notch defense.

C. Trent Rosecrans
1. RP Neftali Feliz, TEX
2. SP Brian Matusz, BAL
3. OF Austin Jackson, DET

I wouldn't go far to say "obvious." I think Feliz has the most "obvious" talent, but the save stat -- especially in today's game -- is so overrated I hate for it to be a deciding factor. In fact, I think it's not so much "obviously" Feliz, as Feliz by default. Listen, I'll take Feliz long-term over any of the other AL rookies, but I'm not sure he was as dominant all season as we remember throughout the postseason. That said, I'm still going for Feliz, but by a nose over Matusz, who made 32 starts for the Orioles.


David Andriesen
1. C Buster Posey, SFG
2. RF Jason Heyward, ATL
3. SP Jaime Garcia, STL

What an amazing field of candidates here – half a dozen guys have ROY numbers in a normal year. Posey and Heyward are 1 and 1A for me; I
know I’m not supposed to count postseason, but maybe it tainted my choice. Apologies to Gaby Sanchez, Tyler Colvin and Jonny Venters.

Evan Brunell
1. RF Jason Heyward, ATL
2. C Buster Posey, SF
3. SP Jamie Garcia, STL

If award voting didn't occur until after the postseason, Josh Beckett would have won the 2007 Cy Young Award over CC Sabathia. A similar situation arises today as Buster Posey is certainly the best rookie, postseason included. But the voting is for regular season only, so Jason Heyward rightfully takes the title. To me, the additional time played at a high level is too hard to ignore. Trent nails the Heyward-Posey debate below.

C. Trent Rosecrans
1. RF Jason Heyward, ATL
2. C Buster Posey, SF
3. SP Jaime Garcia, STL

As difficult as it was picking an AL Rookie of the Year, it's even more difficult to pick the National League's winner -- but for the complete opposite reason. This may be remembered as one of the greatest years for rookies in one league in a long, long time. I can't even imagine making the case for which player I would take long-term, Posey or Heyward. Hell, I'll take the second pick and be happy. But the deciding factor for me is something that was out of Posey's hands -- Heyward played 142 games as a rookie and went through the ups and downs. The book was out on him early, and he still played well. Posey finished with as many homers, but Heyward still had a better OPS+, which is impressive considering the number of at-bats. Now, if postseason stats were included, I may change my story, but they're not. Crazy that in the AL, or most other years, Garcia could be considered a shoo-in, but now he's an also-ran.

MLB Facts and Rumors AL Rookie of the Year
Neftali Feliz gets the nod with 8 points to Jackson's 5. Matusz finishes with 4.

MLB Facts and Rumors NL Rookie of the Year
Jason Heyward fends off Posey with 8 points to Posey's seven. Garcia finishes way behind with three.

-- Evan Brunell

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Posted on: October 22, 2010 6:50 pm

Players choice finalists announced

Carlos Gonzalez In September, major-league players voted for the Players Choice Awards, coordinated by the union. Friday, the MLBPA released the three finalists for each of the awards, which will be announced over the course of next week.

Player of the year (both leagues): Carlos Gonzalez (Rockies, pictured), Josh Hamilton (Rangers), Joey Votto (Reds).

Man of the year (for off-field efforts): Torii Hunter (Angels), Brandon Inge (Tigers), Troy Tulowitzki (Rockies).

NL outstanding player: Gonzalez, Albert Pujols (Cardinals), Votto.

NL outstanding pitcher: Roy Halladay (Phillies), Ubaldo Jimenez (Rockies), Adam Wainwright (Cardinals).

NL outstanding rookie: Jaime Garcia (Cardinals), Jason Heyward (Braves), Buster Posey (Giants).

NL comeback player: R.A. Dickey (Mets), Tim Hudson (Braves), Aubrey Huff (Giants).

AL outstanding player: Jose Bautista (Blue Jays), Miguel Cabrera (Tigers), Hamilton.

AL outstanding pitcher: Felix Hernandez (Mariners), David Price (Rays), CC Sabathia (Yankees).

AL outstanding rookie: Wade Davis (Rays), Neftali Feliz (Rangers), Austin Jackson (Tigers).

AL comeback player: Freddy Garcia (White Sox), Vladimir Guerrero (Rangers), Francisco Liriano (Twins).

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: September 20, 2010 3:50 pm

Garcia may pitch again this season

Jaime Garcia Jaime Garcia isn't shut down -- but he's just not pitching this week.

Jeff Suppan will start in Garcia's place on Thursday, Cardinals manager Tony La Russa told reporters (via MLB.com ), but the left-hander could pitch in the final week of the season.

"There's a couple of places next week where he could fit in," La Russa said on Monday.

Garcia said he was tired, having thrown 163 1/3 innings, but he still wanted to pitch.

"I'm not going to lie to you, I was feeling a little tired," Garcia said. "But that was just like everybody else. Nobody was feeling 100 percent like you do in spring training."

Last week the Cardinals announced they were shutting Garcia down for the season, only to reverse course later that day when Garcia talked his way back into consideration for another start.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Posted on: September 15, 2010 5:04 pm
Edited on: September 15, 2010 6:07 pm

Cards may shut down Garcia

You need any more proof the Cardinals' have conceded the 2010 season? The team is shutting down rookie starter Jaime Garcia, Tony La Russa told reporters before Wednesday's game.

La Russa said it was precautionary, not because of any sort of injury. Garcia is 13-8 with a 2.70 ERA and one of the many viable candidates for National League Rookie of the Year.

Garcia allowed 11 runs (nine earned) in his last two starts, Monday against the Cubs and Sept. 8 at Milwaukee.

The Reds lead the Cardinals by seven games and their magic number is 12. The Cardinals are closer to third-place Houston than the Reds in the National League Central. St. Louis is also seven games back in the NL Wild Card.

While it may be the white flag, that doesn't mean it's not the right move. Garcia had Tommy John surgery in 2008 and came back to pitch 37 2/3 innings in 2009. He's thrown 163 1/3 innings this season.

Also, Cardinals closer Ryan Franklin is headed home to Oklahoma for a personal issue and will re-join the team this weekend.

UPDATE: FoxSportsMidwest.com's B.J. Raines has the story up , here's what La Russa had to say:
“He’s not hurt, it’s just precautionary and smart,” La Russa said. “It doesn’t make sense to push him. …I don’t think he wants to jeopardize his career. He’s thrown a lot of pitches. He did a lot of things when he pitched the last game that were high quality, but (pitching coach Dave Duncan) thinks just as far as the consistency of it, it’s down some. He just talked about his arm feeling a little tired and he didn’t have the same pop.

“He’s shown some fatigue here lately and ‘Dunc’ believes his stuff has flattened out a little bit. He’s not hurt but we don’t want to push it.”

UPDATE: Oh, not so fast... Cardinals general manger John Mozeliak says Garcia will be skipped once in the rotation and then will be reevaluated. This could just be a smokescreen, especially if the Cardinals are eliminated by that point and then the team can shut him down with less criticism that they're giving up on the season.

 -- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Posted on: September 6, 2010 12:59 pm

Year of the Rookie in NL

Of all the postseason award races, the most stacked and most interesting is probably the National League Rookie of the Year Award.

Almost impressive as the names on this list are the names not on this list of front-runners, guys like Stephen Strasburg, Jonathon Niese, Tyler Colvin and Mike Stanton. You could add Ike Davis, Neil Walker and Jhoulys Chacin to that list, as well. And Mike Leake and Ian Desmond...

Starlin Castro SS Starlin Castro
Chicago Cubs
.317/.360/.438 3 HR 40 RBI -2.8 UZR/150 2.3 WAR

Castro had six RBI in his big-league debut on May 7 and has been nearly as impressive since.  In fact, he's been better since the All-Star break, hitting .363/.388/.493 in the second-half of the season. Castro has a good bat and good speed, but needs to refine his game. He has eight stolen bases, but has been caught stealing six times. His glove has been erratic, but he has the raw tools to be very good. In short, his future seems brighter than the present, and that's saying something.

Jaime Garcia SP Jaime Garcia
St. Louis Cardinals
13-6 153 1/3 IP 2.35 ERA 61 BB 124 K 3.5 WAR

Although he's behind Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright in the Cardinals' rotation, he has been just as good as either of those two. The left-hander, two years off of Tommy John, has been at his best even as his team has hit the skids. During the team's recent slide, losing 14 of 21 games, Garcia is 3-1 with a 0.67 ERA. In his lone loss during that run, his team let him down, allowing three unearned runs against the Brewers on Aug. 17. The only earned runs he's allowed in that time are the two he gave up in the series-opening 3-2 victory over the Reds on Friday.

Jason Heyward OF Jason Heyward
Atlanta Braves
.281/.389/.473 16 HR 65 RBI 3.1 UZR/150 3.7 WAR

In spring training, it was tough to find anyone who hadn't already awarded the Rookie of the Year to Heyward. It was easy to see why, he's big, strong, fast and has good plate discipline. In short, he's a can't-miss prospect. And he hasn't missed. Although, injuries have slowed him, he's still been nothing short of impressive.

Buster Posey C Buster Posey
San Francisco Giants
.328/.374/.506 11 HR 55 RBI -6.9 UZR/150 3.1 WAR

It took until May for the Giants to finally call Posey up to the big leagues and he quickly showed why people were calling for him to be on the roster since opening day. He took over the starting spot when the Giants traded Bengie Molina on July 1 and is expected to anchor the Giants' lineup for years to come. Since Molina was traded, Posey has hit .346/.400/.562. There are still questions whether he can be an elite defensive catcher, but his bat will carry him.

Gaby Sanchez 1B Gaby Sanchez
Florida Marlins
.284/.353/.467 16 HR 72 RBI -0.2 UZR/150 2.7 WAR

Not only can Sanchez swing the bat, he has a heck of a cross-check, taking out Nyjer Morgan in last week's brawl in Florida. While that may have been his most high-profile hit, Sanchez has plenty moret. He leads major league rookies in total bases (227), doubles (35) and RBI (72).

Jonny Venters RP Jonny Venters
Atlanta Braves
4-2 71 1/3 IP 1.77 ERA 32 BB 81 K 1.7 WAR

Venters won't get too many votes, but he's been fantastic for the Braves out of the bullpen this season. He leads all rookies with 65 appearances, 21 more than the next most-used rookie pitcher in the National League. With Billy Wagner retiring after this season, Venters could be the team's closer in 2011.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: September 2, 2010 3:30 pm

Looking at the NL Cy Young race

Cy Young Today we continue our look at the leaders for baseball's big awards as we head into the last month of the season.

In what has been dubbed "The Year of the Pitcher," the Cy Young Awards are going to be tough calls, and in the National League the top six in ERA are separated by just 0.09 points from Tim Hudson (2.24) to Jaime Garcia (2.33).

In addition to the traditional stats, Evan loves him some xFIP. The basic idea of xFIP is -- besides being fun to say aloud -- Fielding Independent Pitching (FIP) that's normalizes home run rants for ballparks. Basically, it's all about strikeouts and walks. I'm not as big of a fan of it, but since it was included with the American League folks , I'll list it here for consistency's sake.

(Why don't I like it as much? Because it's too dependent on strikeouts, devaluing pitchers who get other kinds of outs. Funny, I don't care how you get outs, just so you get 'em. I understand if you're looking for a free agent to sign, it's a better predictor of where to spend your money and future performance, but when you're talking about evaluating a performance that has already happened, I don't care about style points.)

While the W-L stat is, in most opinions rightfully losing its place among the most important stats, another maligned statistic is the save. Heath Bell and Billy Wagner are having good seasons as closers, but it takes a special season for a reliever to have a chance. And this is a special season -- for starters. Nice seasons for Bell and Wagner, but they won't be in the discussion this year.

So here's those in the discussion (in alphabetical order):

Chris Carpenter Chris Carpenter
St. Louis Cardinals
14-5, 197 1/3 IP , 147 K, 54 BB, 2.92 ERA, 3.85 xFIP

Last year's runner-up is having another good season. His ERA is up and he already has one more loss than he did last season, but he's not exactly been a slouch. Last year Carpenter and Adam Wainwright split the vote, that shouldn't happen this year.

Jaime Garcia Jaime Garcia
St. Louis Cardinals
12-6, 146 2/3 IP, 118 K, 58 BB, 2.33 ERA, 3.75 xFIP

That said, Garcia is the third Cardinal ace this year. The left-hander should be front-runner for the Rookie of the Year Award, but his 2.33 ERA puts him in consideration for the Cy Young, too.

Roy Hallady Roy Halladay
Philadelphia Phillies
16-10, 214 IP, 190 K, 26 BB, 2.27 ERA, 2.91 xFIP

Wait, the American League's best pitcher goes to the National League and dominates? Yeah, not that much of a shocker there. He hasn't exactly turned into the 30-game winner that some predicted, but he's on pace to become just the third pitcher in the live-ball era to lead his league in strikeouts, while having the fewest walks per nine innings in that same season. The last to do so was Robin Roberts in 1954.

Tim Hudson Tim Hudson
Atlanta Braves
15-5, 184 2/3 IP, 109 K, 58 BB, 2.24 ERA, 3.86 xFIP

Like Garcia, Hudson underwent Tommy John surgery in 2008 and has certainly rewarded the Braves for the the three-year, $28 million extension given to him this past offseason.

Ubaldo Jimenez Ubaldo Jimenez
Colorado Rockies
17-6, 184 1/3 IP, 170 K, 72 BB, 2.69 ERA, 3.74 xFIP

It looked like Jimenez would run away with the award earlier this season, but he's had a rough June and July (5.16 ERA). It seems crazy talk to think of a pitcher winning a Cy Young pitching half his games in Coors Field. At Coors, he's 8-1 with a 3.16 ERA. On the road, his win total has been hampered by his team's inability to hit on the road. He's 9-5 with a 2.30 ERA not he road, where opponents are hitting just .180/.279/.264.

Josh Johnson Josh Johnson
Florida Marlins
11-5, 177 2/3 IP, 174 K, 45 BB, 2.28 ERA, 3.23 xFIP

Johnson's allowed just seven home runs this season and is striking out nearly four batters for every batter faced. Take out his bad outing in Cincinnati last month and his ERA would be at 2.02.

Mat Latos Mat Latos
San Diego Padres
13-5, 155 2/3 IP, 160 K, 43 BB, 2.25 ERA, 3.36 xFIP

The Padres are in first place because of their pitching -- and Latos has been their best pitcher. While he certainly benefits from pitching at Petco Park, batters are hitting just .188/.247/.310 against him on the road. His ERA is 2.08 at home and 2.36 on the road. After starting 1-3 with a 5.47 ERA in his first five starts of the season, Latos has gone 12-2 with a  1.60 ERA in his last 20.

Adam Wainwright Adam Wainwright
St. Louis Cardinals
17-9, 195 1/3 IP, 178 K, 50 BB, 2.30 ERA, 3.21 xFIP

Last season Wainwright had the most first-place votes for the Cy Young, but finished third in voting. He led the NL in wins last season with 19 and is doing the same this season with 17. Not only that, his ERA is a third-of-a-run lower than it was a year ago. A top-five finish guarantees the last two years of his contract (through 2013) and gives him not only a bonus for the award, but an extra million dollars in 2012.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: August 20, 2010 5:23 pm

Rangers could be poised for awards sweep

Josh Hamilton In 54 years, no team has ever claimed all four major awards -- MVP, Rookie of the Year, Cy Young and Manager of the Year -- in the same year.

As Tom Singer of MLB.com points out, this could be the year that changes, as the Rangers have solid candidates in every category in the American League.

Manager Ron Washington, who in spring training looked like a longshot to keep his job after admitting he tested positive for cocaine last year, seems a favorite after leading the Rangers through an impressive campaign.

League-leading hitter Josh Hamilton is playing about as well as a guy can play lately, making clutch plays at the plate and in the field. Miguel Cabrera definitely has MVP numbers, but the Tigers have become irrelevant down the stretch and the award traditionally favors players for playoff teams.

An early-season injury has kept Cliff Lee from piling up big win and strikeout totals, but he's been incredibly impressive in both Seattle and Texas. He has seven complete games, a 3.44 ERA and leads the league in WHIP. The Rays' David Price might have a better case, but Lee is getting a lot of attention.

The AL rookie award seems pretty wide open, but Neftali Perez has a good shot. He has 27 saves, and as Singer points out, the rest of the rookies in the league have 20 combined.

The Cardinals have a longer shot of pulling off the sweep in the National League, though there are big obstacles for manager Tony La Russa (Bobby Cox will be a sentimental and dserving favorite) and rookie Jaime Garcia (a raft of rookie stars led by Jason Heyward). Adam Wainwright might end up ahead of Ubaldo Jimenez for Cy Young, and Albert Pujols is poised to win his fourth MVP.

All four awards are voted on by members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. The last team to come close to the awards sweep was the 116-win Mariners of 2001. Ichiro Suzuki won the rookie and MVP awards, and Lou Piniella was Manager of the Year.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: July 3, 2010 7:48 pm
Edited on: July 4, 2010 12:56 am

Could Strasburg's start cost him All-Star nod?

Stephen Strasburg I may be alone, but I'm kinda Strasburg-ed out.

The story of the last week has been, "should Stephen Strasburg make the All-Star team?"

Every day for the last few, we've gotten an opinion from random people, players, managers, broadcasters and former players, plus pundits and the rest -- Saturday's versions were a no from Joe Girardi and a yes from Miguel Cabrera .

Saturday's start against the Mets may calm those stories a bit. Strasburg went just five innings against the Mets on Saturday afternoon, giving up four hits, two runs, three walks and five strikeouts. He didn't factor in the decision in the Nationals' 6-5 comeback victory.

Strasburg is going to be really, really good and has shown flashes of being everything Bob Costas said in his drooling during Strasburg's first game.

When it comes down to it, Strasburg's 2-2 with a 2.45 ERA. That's good, but when that's all there is to go on, is it enough?

If one rookie pitcher "deserves" to make the All-Star squad, it's not Strasburg, it's Jaime Garcia. St. Louis' lefty has thrown more innings (94 1/3), has a better ERA (2.10) and his opponents batting average against (.220) is only four points higher than Strasburg's.

Strasburg should make plenty of All-Star appearances, but maybe just not this one.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com