Tyler Chatwood will not be a part of the Colorado Rockies rotation in 2018 after the 27-year-old right-hander inked a deal with the Chicago Cubs on Thursday afternoon.
Chatwood, who bounced between the starting rotation and bullpen in 2017 with the Rockies, reportedly signed a three-year, $38 million deal with the Cubs. Chatwood signed a one-year, $4.4 million deal last offseason to stay with the Rockies for the 2017 campaign, so the Cubs are paying Chatwood a lot of money while counting on him to come through with his “road stats” from last season rather than the numbers he put together at Coors Field.
In 2017, Chatwood was an 8-15 pitcher with a 4.69 ERA in 33 games (25 starts). When pitching in Denver, Chatwood was 3-8 with a 6.01 ERA. Away from Coors Field, Chatwood went 5-7 with a 3.49 ERA.
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Coors Field actually presented a problem for Chatwood the past two seasons. In 2016, Chatwood pieced together a sparkling 8-1 mark and 1.69 ERA in 13 starts outside of Denver. His home ERA was 6.12 in 14 games.
While it is easy to shrug your shoulders and say “Coors” when looking at those statistics, the Cubs will have to hope that Chatwood can find success at hitter-friendly Wrigley Field. They will also have to hope he can limit the number of home runs he surrendered. Last year, Chatwood served up 20 long balls, evenly splitting them between home and away games.
So where does this leave the Rockies rotation? Honestly, in a very good spot. Chatwood was not expected to be back with Colorado this season so the move to Chicago does not come as a surprise. With Chatwood out of the picture, it makes room for Colorado’s young rotation to accumulate more starts. With Kyle Freeland, Jon Gray, Antonio Senzatela and German Marquez back, as well as Chad Bettis expected to be back and healthy, there are plenty of options for the rotation from players who took their turns on the mound in 2017. Additionally, Jeff Hoffman could see time in the rotation as he did last season.