2015 New Britain Rock Cats Pitcher Of The Year: Shane Carle


Sep 15, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; MLB baseballs sit on the field before the Pittsburgh Pirates host the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

As the Colorado Rockies’ affiliates end their seasons, we’re handing out player awards for 2015. Today, the Pitcher of the Year for the New Britain Rock Cats.

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The New Britain Rock Cats threw the ball pretty well in 2015, even in a pitcher-strong Eastern League. Their rotation, even before it was improved greatly by the promotion of Harrison Musgrave, was one of the strong points of the club all season, too.

Ryan Carpenter and Matt Flemer each started nearly 30 games for the Rock Cats, and Bryan Evans and Musgrave each threw well in their half-seasons in the rotation, but our award for pitching excellence goes elsewhere this time around.

Shane Carle came over to Colorado last winter in the trade that sent Rob Scahill to Pittsburgh and the Pirates, and in his first season in the Rockies’ organization, Carle impressed enough to surely earn a move up a level for 2016.

For his quality outings and great work throughout the year, Shane Carle wins our Pitcher of the Year Award for 2015 for the New Britain Rock Cats.

Oh, and it’s safe to say that in this case, the Rockies trading an also-ran middle reliever (Scahill) for a starting pitcher with some future potential (Carle) looks to be a coup for Jeff Bridich’s front office.

[ Related: New Britain Rock Cats 2015 player of the year: Mike Tuchman ]

The numbers to back it up:

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Carle tossed three complete games and two shut outs, earning a measly 1.23 WHIP, striking out an even 100 batters, and leading the team with 14 wins. It’s business as usual for Carle, who came over after spending 2014 in the Pirates’ organization.

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Oh, and he threw well enough at AA New Britain that he was given a promotion to AAA Albuquerque for one start, tossing six innings — but allowing six runs — in his first experience at the AAA level.

What 2016 looks like:

Carle is something of a wild card, having just come over to the Rockies’ organization this season from Pittsburgh’s AA affiliate (also in the Eastern League).

Considering the Rockies’ perennial need for pitching, though, he ought to have graduated up from the New Britain Rock Cats at this point, and I think it’s perfectly realistic to expect him to spend significant time in AAA Albuquerque in 2016.

[ Related: Cristhian Adames is our 2015 AAA player of the year ]

Honorable mention: Matthew Flemer, Austin House.

Flemer nearly took this award from Carle, after starting 27 games, and tossing 169.2 innings, earning a 1.28 WHIP and a 3.87 ERA. His final 2014 start was bad (3.2 IP, 15 hits, 9 runs, just one strikeout), but besides that he put together quite a year and a solid first half, specifically.

House spent 2015 closing for the New Britain Rock Cats, until recent promotion Carlos Estevez took over the role late in the year. In total, House earned 20 saves in 52 games, and although he did allow 73 hits in just 52.1 innings pitched, he allowed just one home run.

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