Results tagged ‘ Jhoulys Chacin ’
– After hitting and taking groundball Friday, Rockies third baseman Casey Blake — who must prove he is healthy after neck surgery last year to hold onto a starting job — planned a full workout on Saturday with hopes of playing Sunday. Saturday will be the sixth straight day Blake has missed five days because of soreness in the trapezius muscle.
– Left-handed pitcher Jamie Moyer was “virtually pain-free,” according to Rockies head athletic trainer Keith Dugger, when he threw a bullpen session on Saturday morning. Moyer planed a long day of strengthening, flexibility and treatment after the session. Moyer had been scratched from a Minor League start on Friday.
– Right-hander Jhoulys Chacin, who left Thursday’s start with a blister on his right index finger, said Saturday morning he was about to throw a 30-35-pitch bullpen session. Chacin left his start Thursday with the ailment after throwing 44 pitches in three innings. He said he does not expect to have any problem making his next scheduled start, on Tuesday against the Padres at Peoria, Ariz.
– Chris Nelson, competing to step into the void at third base if Blake can’t answer the bell, will start Saturday against the Dodgers at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. Other players in the lineup needing big performances to make the squad are outfielders Eric Young Jr. and Andrew Brown, and catcher Wil Nieves.
– Rockies righty Drew Pomeranz threw 35-40 bullpen pitches Friday, will throw again on Sunday, and will start in a game on Wednesday. Pomeranz left his last start with right glute tightness.
ROCKIES RELIEF PITCHING
Dee Gordon, SS
Mark Ellis, 2B
Andre Ethier, RF
Adam Kennedy, 1B
Juan Uribe, 3B
Tony Gwynn Jr., CF
A.J. Ellis, C
Cory Sullivan, LF
Nathan Eovaldi, RHP
DODGERS RELIEF PITCHING
Alberto Castillo, LHP
Fernando Nieve, RHP
Will Savage, RHP
Ryan Tucker, RHP
Logan Bawcom, RHP
Brent Leach, LHP
Right-hander Jhoulys Chacin’s spring devoted to fastball command continues today as he starts for the Rockies, and most likely goes three innings, against the Royals at Surprise Stadium. Also, fast-working lefty Christian Friedrich will appear, on the heels of his two scoreless innings with one hit and two strikeouts against the D-backs five days ago. Friedrich entered camp as a darkhorse candidate for the starting rotation, and has been impressive.
Center fielder Dexter Fowler is the only clear starter in the lineup, but the game is a big one because several players seeking key reserve roles made the trip.
Rockies batting order
Eric Young Jr., LF
Dexter Fowler, CF
Charlie Blackmon, RF
Brandon Wood, SS
Nolan Arenado, 3B
Chad Tracy, 1B
Chris Nelson, 2B
Brendan Harris, DH
Wil Nieves, C
Jhoulys Chacin, RHP
Christian Friedrich, LHP
Rex Brothers, LHP
Matt Belisle, RHP
Joe Gardner, RHP
Dustin Molleken, RHP
Stephen Dodson, RHP
Royals batting order
Alex Gordon, LF
Johnny Giavotella, 2B
Eric Hosmer, 1B
Billy Butler, DH
Mike Moustakas, 3B
Jeff Francoeur, RF
Lorenzo Cain, CF
Alcides Escobar, SS
Luis Mendoza, RHP
Joakim Soria, RHP
Sean O’Sullivan, RHP
Tim Collins, LHP
Noel Arguelles, LHP
Rockies right-hander Jhoulys Chacin’s 2011 season started in glowing fashion, when he held opposing batters to a .201 batting average before the All-Star break. By the end, everything seemed complicated. The Rockies dealt former ace pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez at the trading deadline, and it wasn’t simply enough to pitch. While never asked by his club, there was an implied requirement that he become an “ace,” not just a strong pitcher but a leader and face of the pitching staff.
Manager Jim Tracy’s goal going into 2012 is to make sure Chacin focuses on one simple task that makes everything else possible — repeat his delivery. Repeating the delivery allows him to spot his fastball, which makes his tremendous secondary pitches useful.
The Rockies’ signing of 49-year-old Jamie Moyer, who has a quarter-century on Chacin, and the trade with the Orioles for in-his-prime starter Jeremy Guthrie pretty much takes any leadership burden off Chacin’s shoulders. General manager Dan O’Dowd questioned Chacin’s conditioning before camp began, but Tracy
So Chacin makes his Cactus League debut today against the D-backs at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, and Tracy is telling him to keep it simple.
“I did have a conversation with him in this office,” Tracy said. “It goes back to taking this opportunity in Spring Training to work on his delivery and repeating it, not getting into jerking and stuff like that, where his fastball starts to run away from him. He’s working on pounding his fastball for strikes.
“I personally feel, and you’ve heard me talk about this a lot last year, that if there’s one guy in this camp who can do what we saw last year with an Ian Kennedy [with the D-backs], a guy that is capable of taking a quantum leap, to me it’s Jhoulys Chacin, with much-improved fastball command.”
Here is the Rockies’ lineup, updated with Troy Tulowitzki being scratched because of illness:
Eric Young Jr., CF
Marco Scutaro, 2B
Carlos Gonzalez, LF
Jason Giambi, DH
Jordan Pacheco, C
Charlie Blackmon, RF
Nolan Arenado, 3B
Chad Tracy, 1B
Jonathan Herrera, SS
A former Rockies top Draft pick, lefty Christian Friedrich, is scheduled to pitch after Chacin. Friedrich, taken 25th overall in 2008, struggled to 6-10 with a 5.00 ERA in 25 starts at Double-A Tulsa last year. But injuries affected his 2010 season and his preparation for 2011. This past winter, he spent time working out with the Phillies’ Cliff Lee, and the Rockies have placed his Spring Training locker beside that of Moyer. Friedrich is in better physical shape, and said the veterans have offered him a high level of information.
Veteran reliever Matt Belisle also is scheduled to throw.
For now, the Rockies’ 2012 potential Opening Day starting rotation can be called the “under-30 club.” But that could change, considerably, with one signing.
Looking for a veteran to help guide the young rotation, the Rockies could be bringing in the veteran – 49-year-old left-hander Jamie Moyer. The Rockies have made an offer of a Minor League contract, and a club official told MLB.com on Tuesday morning that “it’s in his court.”
Moyer had Tommy John ligament transfer surgery in his throwing elbow in December 2010 and worked for ESPN as an analyst last year, but stated all along he hoped to pitch again in 2012. He went 9-9 with a 4.84 ERA for the Phillies in 2010.
By making the offer, the Rockies are signaling that they believe Moyer can be a help to them, not merely a novelty, although his potential signing sparks folks to go digging for trivia. For example, when Moyer made his Major League debut for the Cubs on June 16, 1986, the following competitors for the Rockies’ 2012 rotation had not been born: Jhoulys Chacin (Jan. 7, 1988), Tyler Chatwood (Dec. 16, 1989), Juan Nicasio (Aug. 31, 1986), Drew Pomeranz (Nov. 22, 1988) and Alex White (Aug. 29, 1988).
One of Moyer’s teammates on the 1986 Cubs was Rockies television color commentator George Frazier, then a relief pitcher.
The Denver Post, which reported the offer to Moyer on Monday night, also reported that the Rockies are looking at trading for a second baseman, with the Red Sox’s Marco Scutaro and the Mets’ Justin Turner as possibilities.
Turns out Rockies right-hander Jhoulys Chacin’s mother was right about Denver’s unpredictable weather.
After Denver reached a record-high 84 degrees on Saturday, a rain-snow mix hit on Sunday and forced the final game of the season-opening series with the D-backs. No makeup date was immediately announced.
Chacin was supposed to make his first start of the season, against the D-backs’ Joe Saunders. Chacin invited his parents from Venezuela, but said his mother put off the trip until at least May because she doesn’t like bad weather.
The teams took batting practice in cold wind. By the time the postponement was announced it was rain and snow. Within minutes after announcement, it was simply snow.
Chacin, instead, will start Tuesday against the Dodgers. Righty Jason Hammel will start Wednesday in the second game of the two-game set at Coors.
Right-hander Esmil Rogers, who won the fifth starter spot in Spring Training, will start on Thursday at Pittsburgh in the Pirates’ home opener, and the first home game for current Bucs skipper and former Rockies manger Clint Hurdle. Ubaldo Jimenez, who is battling a cut cuticle on his right (pitching) thumb, is scheduled for Friday. Jorge De La Rosa, who left his first start of the season on Saturday with a blistered left middle finger, will start Saturday at Pittsburgh.
According to the Rockies, tickets from Sunday’s game are valid for the makeup, whenever it is scheduled. Exchanges may be made for any game the remainder of the season, value-for-value, as long as the exchange is made before the makeup date. There are no cash refunds.
Ticket exchanges will be accepted at Coors Field Ticket Office and all Rockies Dugout Stores.
Complimentary tickets have a value of zero dollars and may not be exchanged, and discounted tickets may be exchanged only for the amount paid to the Rockies and are subject to any constraints applicable to the original sale.
For more information, call (303) ROCKIES.
Right-hander Tim Redding’s first Rockies appearance was not as sharp as he wanted. He saw heavy traffic for two innings – three hits and a walk – but yielded just one run in the 8-6 victory over the Brewers.
With two out and one on in the first inning, Jody Gerut drove a 3-0 pitch. Right fielder Ryan Spilborghs tracked it through high winds and chased it to the wall in the corner but could not make the play. Redding though it was going to be a tape-measure home run.
“You don’t think, even in Spring Training games, a guy is going to come out swinging 3-0, so I threw a fastball to get back in there, and try to get him out later on,” Redding said. “The next inning, they had the walk and the hit, then I got a double play and got the pitcher out.
“That was encouraging, knowing that I had first and second, nobody out, then got a double-play ball and got the pitcher to hit the ball on the ground.”
Redding, a non-roster invitee but one the Rockies have attempted to trade for or sign in the past, said he needs to work on pitching inside to left-handed hitters.
Right-hander Jhooulys Chacin, who followed Redding, was charged with three runs, two earned, in two innings. All of the runs came in the third inning.
But the hits were along the ground, and he escaped the inning with a double-play grounder. The first out nearly was a double play, but first baseman Paul Lo Duca, who was charged with the error on Gerut’s hard bouncer, could not scoop shortstop Troy Tulowitzki’s throw.
“I was tickled to death with what I saw from both guys,” Rockies manager Jim Tracy said.
The Rockies have signed the following pre-arbitration players to one-year contracts: right-handed pitchers Alberto Alburquerque, Jhoulys Chacin, Samuel Deduno, Matt Daley, Edgmer Escalona, Shane Lindsay, Juan Nicasio, Greg Reynolds, Chaz Roe and Esmil Rogers; left-handed pitchers Franklin Morales and Greg Smith; catcher Mike McKenry; infielders Hector Gomez, Chris Nelson, Ian Stewart and Eric Young Jr.; and outfielders Dexter Fowler, Carlos Gonzalez and Seth Smith. Terms were not announced.
As early as tee ball, coaches learn quickly that it’s a lot easier to teach when the drills are fun. It’s no different teaching the children-at-heart in the Majors.
So the Rockies have this drill to help pitchers develop their fielding that they call “rag ball smash.” A coach hits one-hoppers or line drives hard at a pitcher from close range. To keep from filling the disabled list, soft-cover balls are used.
Each day, they keep score, talk trash and generally laugh as they work. But manager Jim Tracy pointed out recently that a number of big fielding plays by pitchers last season were attributable to the reactions developed in the drill.
“You see a ball coming off the bat like that and you have to react to it,” Tracy said. “Obviously, it’s not a hard ball. But how many of those in-between-type comebackers have you seen where a guy flinches.
“How many two-out, man-on-second-base groundball base hits through the middle did we save last year? How many of those cases could have been a game-changing hit?”
Tracy brought the drill to the Rockies last season, when he helped organize Spring Training as bench coach under then-manager Clint Hurdle. Just before games began, he organized a tournament that right-handed prospect Jhoulys Chacin won. The team also includes clubhouse staff in the event. It’s a rollicking good time.
It was a great time for righty reliever Matt Belisle, who won this year’s championship — and took home the purple robe with $20 bills totaling $200 pinned to it — by catching 15 smashes in a row in the final. Lefty reliever Franklin Morales finished second by catching 13.
Belisle was all smiles.
“I think we have made it fun, and all the guys pretty much agree it does help,” Belisle said. “The genius is to incorporate some competition. That’s where we all come together and enjoy it.”
It would have been nice for Belisle to have been able to wear the championship robe to, say, dinner in Tucson. But after seeing him don it on the field, someone decided that it wouldn’t have been a good fashion statement for him to wear it anywhere else.
“I don’t know where my robe is,” he said. “That’s a good question.
“But I got the money, and I’m going to go find the robe.”
It appears outfielder Matt Murton finally gets what he deserves — a chance to stay in the Majors. All Murton has done is hit .324 with 27 doubles, 12 home runs and 79 RBIs at Triple-A Colorado Springs. At one point he set a Sky Sox record with a 29-game hit streak. But all that got him before now was two brief trips to the Majors.
Such is life when a team has a stacked outfield, the way the Rockies do. When the Rockies acquired him from the Athletics for infielder Cory Wimberly during the offseason, they figured part of Murton’s value was he had a Minor League option and could be sent up and down for roster purposes. That’s exactly what happened, even though Murton did well in Colorado Springs and decently in 22 games with the Rockies (.267, one home run, five doubles, six RBIs). But on Tuesday, Murton was one of four players from Colorado Springs to be called up for the final 24 games.
It’s not as if the Rockies are calling up Murton, infielder Mike McCoy and pitchers Matt Belisle and Jhoulys Chacin as rewards for a job well done. All could come into play in the final days. Murton had several big moments as a part-time player with the Cubs over the last several years. McCoy is valuable since starting shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is suffering from back spasms. With an expanded roster, having a couple of extra pitchers like Chacin — the team’s top prospect — and Bellisle around can’t hurt.
To keep the Major League roster below the 40-man limit, the Rockies made a couple of paperwork moves. By calling designating right-handed pitcher Adam Eaton for assignment and calling up infielder Chris Nelson but putting him on the 60-day disabled list, the club cleared the necessary spots so they could purchase the contracts of Belisle and McCoy.
For those interested, Murton (No. 14) and Chacin (45) will keep the same jersey numbers as they had in their earlier callups. McCoy will wear 18. Belisle returns wearing No. 34 after a trade with fellow righty reliever Matt Herges, who will wear 32.
We’ll see if Rafael Betancourt is the eighth-inning answer for the Rockies. But at least he knows the question, so to speak.
Betancourt, acquired from the Indians on Thursday for Minor League pitcher Connor Graham, joined the Rockies on Friday for the big series with the Giants. Beyond some TV footage and an Interleague series past, Rockies manager Jim Tracy knows little of Betancourt. But Tracy knows Betancourt knows what he needs to know to fill a primary setup man in place of Manuel Corpas, who underwent surgery to remove a bone chip from his right elbow.
“He knows what he’s doing,” Tracy said. “He’s going to make you beat him with the bat. This guy has never been a guy that creates opportunity for the other team by walking people. He’s a strike-thrower, throws very hard, and has all the things that are necessary.
“Being a strike-thrower, for me that’s the most important thing when you get down to the last six outs of the game.”
Betancourt, 34, who broke in with the Indians in 2003 and didn’t pitch for anyone else, sounded shocked after learning of the trade on Thursday. The blank stare was gone Friday. He was accepted within the expanding Venezuelan corner of the ballclub. He knew veteran catcher Yorvit Torrealba and fellow relievers Juan Rincon and Franklin Morales already. It turns out young outfielder Carlos Gonzalez and freshly called-up pitcher Jhoulys Chacin grew up within a bout a 10-minute radius of where Betancourt grew up.
And a look at the standings, with the Rockies a game ahead of the Giants in the National League Wild Card race and facing them in a three-game series starting Friday night, made Betancourt feel even more at home.
“It’s a weird feeling, the first time this has happened to me, but I’m just excited to be here,” he said. “All these years I’ve been watching trades that are made. it’s happened to me now. I always wondered how it feels to get traded to a team in the pennant race. It’s vey special.”
– The Rockies designated righty releiver Ryan Speier for assignment. Speier, who is out of Minor League options, was activated from the disabled list earlier this week but had not pitched. Speier said it was simply that a more experienced reliever was available.
The Rockies are hoping Speier clears waivers and can be assigned to Triple-A Colorado Springs.
– Tracy said Corpas’ surgery went well enough that the team will wait two weeks to see how the elbow heals, then hopefully proceed with rehab.