When 5 isn’t enough: An Ode To Pitching, Part II: David Hale

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Today we continue to look at ‘Do the Rockies have enough pitching, in the majors and at AAA.’ Yesterday we started at the top with Rockies “ace” Jorge De La Rosa, who also started two games in rehab with the Isotopes. Today we take a look at quite possibly the hottest pitcher in the Rockies System, David Hale.

Last week when I was on 610 KNML for “Talking Topes with Troy,” we talked about him getting the call up and if he could be the right guy for the Rockies. Boy was he. Hale scattered eight hits over six-and-two-thirds innings. He allowed two earned runs and struck out two to take home the win. He was immediately sent down to Albuquerque since he was the 26th man as part of a double header. He then pitched Thursday again only allowing two runs.

Hale was acquired by trade from the Braves along with right-hander Gus Schlosser in exchange for minor league catchers Jose Briceno and Chris O’Dowd. He then pulled an oblique muscle in spring training which likely cost him a starting spot with the Rockies out of spring training. Hale would rehab through Albuquerque and would have a tough time. He would allow 7 runs on 8 hits in just one-and-two-thirds. Hale would settle down his next start, allowing three runs in four innings. He would then allow exactly two runs in every following, including Colorado, except for a game against Fresno when the wind was literally gusting over 75 mph and a routine pop up by Jon Singleton left the yard. Due to the rough rehab start and the start against Fresno, his 5.56 minor league ERA this season is very misleading.

Hale joined me on the 610 KNML Sports Bar Friday. He told us he is grateful for the time he has had in Albuquerque because he doesn’t believe he would have been as good in Colorado if he had not been able to adjust to the mile high elevation here in Albuquerque first. He has been the most consistent starter for the Topes all season and his ground ball ratio makes him a very valuable pitcher for this organization.

Hale continues to get better with every start and he said during the radio interview, he feels better with every start as well. The nice thing about Hale is he is a guy you can root for because he’s easy to like. He also makes no excuses when he has a bad start. He is a no nonsense get it done kind of  pitcher and that’s what the Rockies need.  Hale has continued to sharpen his approach with every start. With a good defense behind him, he has shut out stuff even in a park like Coors Field

Hale is a good pitcher who has showed his chops at the major league level. Going into this season, he has a 3.02 ERA in 47 MLB games with a 1.45/1 strike out to walk ratio. He added that excellent start in Colorado last week to that resume. He has shown he can handle the altitude here in Albuquerque and in Colorado and is ready to be a permanent part of the Rockies rotation.

Hale will find himself in the Rockies rotation at some point and he will stay there. Hale is a big YES to one of the ten that the Rockies will need to stay competitive.

Writers Note: I had hoped to add the interview from 610 but  the audio was not good. It will be repaired and added to the article tomorrow.

Tomorrow, we will look at another starter who has started for both the Topes and Rockies. He also threw 7-and-a-third no hit innings on May 28th. That’s right, tomorrow we’ll take a closer look at Chad Bettis as this series continues.

Additional Note: In yesterday’s piece, I said the Topes had 13 different starters this season. With Yohan Flande’s start tonight, Friday, he becomes the 14th different Isotopes Starting Pitcher. More on him in a much later part of this series.

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