Sound The Eddie Butler Alarm


May 30, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Colorado Rockies starting pitcher Eddie Butler (31) pitches against the Philadelphia Phillies during the first inning at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

After a two inning, seven run performance last night, is it time to start worrying that star prospect Eddie Butler’s shine has rubbed off?

Enough excuses.

We tried those already; Eddie Butler had a bad luck BABIP. Eddie Butler was just developing his change-up. Eddie’s just faced the Dodgers too much.

Is it time to start worrying about Eddie Butler?

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Last night in El Paso, Butler went two innings allowing seven hits for seven earned runs, he struck out three and walked five. His ERA in AAABQ is now up to a terrifying 9.00. He is only 24 so any true worries must be taken with a grain of salt, he could turn this around at any point in the next 12-16 months and still be one of the best developed pitchers in the staff. But, he’s still not missing bats (six strikeouts in 14 IP, 14.1 H/9), he’s still not finding the zone consistently (10 BB), and he’s suffering when runners get on.

All of the things we worried about Butler becoming, he’s become, and now it’s the worrisome process of working himself out of it. It’s not impossible to believe Eddie will still be good, like I said he’s only 24, but the clock is now ticking and ticking loudly.

I’m not an alarmist, baseball is a game of patience. Chad Bettis taught me that no matter how bad a guy has looked in the past he can fight to become an incredibly serviceable pitcher with the right teaching and the right mentality. But to pretend that there’s nothing to worry about with Butler is to pull the wool over the eyes that you currently have buried in the sand.

Rockies fans still aren’t over Greg Reynolds, the first round pick that was rushed to the majors, got knocked around, and fell out of baseball. The PTSD from Reynolds still lingers, which is probably why it’s so easy to fall off the Butler bandwagon. Like the first relationship after your significant other cheats on you, you’re just not ready to trust again.

The Rockies organization still has to kick the narrative they can’t develop a pitcher and it’s going to take more than Bettis for anyone to stop jumping off a cliff every time one of their young studs has a hiccup. The organization now waits patiently on Jon Gray, the best pitching prospect the organization has ever had, because they know that Gray’s success or failure could ultimately decide how the team develops pitching prospects for the next five to ten years.

Butler’s failure would be another scathing indictment of the Rockies pitching development system that has a laundry list of ‘what could’ve been’ players littering it.

The worry is justified, he hasn’t been what we thought, every bad thing that could have happened has happened. Is it time to sound the alarm?