2012 Outlook: Colorado Rockies

The Rockies are coming off a disappointing seasons where they only won 72 games. In terms of offense and pitching they were in the middle of the pack. Troy Tulowitzki is coming off one of his best seasons as a pro, and Carlos Gonzalez was impactful as well. The Rockies traded starting pitcher Ubaldo Jiminez got traded halfway through the year for some top minor league arms.
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Angels, Rockies Swap Players.

Yesterday the Colorado Rockies and Los Angeles Angels swapped Chris Iannetta and Tyler Chatwood. On the surface it looks like a really good deal for the Angels. They badly needed a catcher after getting .191/.253/.301 out of their catchers last year which is terrible. Iannetta on the other hand posted much better statistics, during the season, he had .248/.370/.417. If we dig deeper and look at some splits as well as some advanced statistics we realize that Iannetta was horrible on the road. This shouldn’t come as a total surpise, Coors inflates offensive even if it isn’t as much since the humidor at Coors got implemented.

Throughout his career Iannetta has performed much better at home. Since 2006 you can see how he has performed at home and away from home in this spreadsheet.

 

The two big things that really jump out at you are Iannetta’s big drop offs in power and his wRC+. Coors is one to increase power but when he’s away from Coors he’s hardly above average power wise. When he’s away from home he’s also creating runs 19% worse then league average, Angel fans don’t want to see that. Iannetta can do damage at Coors but when he’s away he’s just not as good.

The Angels got 21 year old Tyler Chatwood. Last year was his first taste of big league experience and he wasn’t that impressive.

In 27 games last year, 25 starts, Chatwood had an unimpressive 4.89 FP and 4.90 xFIP. He doesn’t strike out batters and has a problem walking them. He struck out 11.7% of the batters he faced and walked 11.2% he faced. If he wants to stay in the big leagues he needs to cut down walks by a big margin. He has the potential to be a 3 or 4 in the big leagues but it might be in Colorado’s best interest to let Chatwood start the year in the minors.

In the end, both teams got what they needed. Whether it pays off or not remains to be seen though. If I had to I’d say Colorado got the better deal. They got a young pitcher with potential and signed former Reds catcher Ramon Hernandez to fill their void. I didn’t talk about Hernandez but look out for a post in the near future.