Sep 14, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Colorado Rockies starting pitcher Jon Gray (55) works against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the first inning at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
Here’s a quick, piping hot afternoon take for you guys: the Colorado Rockies ought to shut down their biggest prospect right now.
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Ah, piping hot, quickly-done afternoon takes. Nothing better! Here’s one comin’ at ya: the Colorado Rockies need to shut down Jon Gray right now, after his eighth big league start Monday night at Dodger Stadium.
He’s now thrown 36 innings in the big leagues, and 114.1 more in the minors this season, for a grand total of 150.1 innings pitched across 29 games/28 starts in 2015.
He threw 124.1 innings in 2014, and 74.2 in 2013 (though that was after a big college season before the draft), so he’s been ramping up consistently and hasn’t yet shown significant outward signs of weakness.
But why risk it and run him out there on a terrible team for, what, three more starts? Forget it. He’s done exactly what you wanted him to do; he came up, got his feet wet, overall acquitted himself rather well despite one or two tough starts, and missed bats. He proved he can hack it at this level, and as he develops, he could really be something next year.
He didn’t get a big league win, and he didn’t win Monday night over Kershaw, but that game was a high note for him; a career high in strikeouts against a very good team with a great offense in a hostile road ballpark, and he more or less rose to the occasion until he hit the skids at the end. Let’s shut it down now.
In other words, he’s the opposite of how Eddie Butler came up, and Gray hasn’t seen nearly the same amount of struggle Butler has seen. (I know, they aren’t perfect comparisons since they both have different strategies in their starts, but it’s hard not to compare the two closely-linked top pitching prospects based on Major League history).
That’s all. Like I said, quick #hottake. I suppose I could go into a longer post and look at numbers or articulate a case in 1500 words, but that is a lot of work and this seems pretty obvious: higher workload, diminishing returns, out on a high note, jump start preparation for next year, expect much more of him in 2016.
Am I wrong?