Alex Colomé is slated to be the new closer for the Colorado Rockies in the 2021 season. In 2021, he struggled a bit for the Minnesota Twins in comparison to his usual stats.
In 2021, he pitched in 67 games and he had a 4.15 ERA with 17 saves, an ERA+ of 103, and a FIP of 4.23. His problem was that he was allowing more than usual. From 2016 through 2020, he averaged 55 games per season with an ERA of 2.62, an ERA+ of 163, and only 7.0 hits allowed per nine innings. In 2021, he allowed 9.4 hits per nine innings.
He was even more dominant in 2019 and 2020, when he allowed only 5.9 hits per nine innings, which is part of the reason why his ERA was only 2.27.
But the projections are not favorable for Colorado Rockies reliever Alex Colomé
ZiPS projects that Alex Colomé will have an ERA of 4.42 in 61 appearances with 21 saves. Steamer projects more appearances (70) but fewer saves (20) and a much higher ERA (5.24).
Frankly, Baseball-Reference has a much more realistic projection. They are projecting an ERA of 3.80 in 64 innings (they didn’t project the number of appearances). However, they are projecting fewer saves (13).
Considering his past track record, this should be more an accurate projection but Colomé may see even more success than that.
Colomé is known for his high groundball rate. Colorado’s rotation has found a lot of success with high groundball rates but the Rockies bullpen (which has struggled) hasn’t had any groundball specialists.
Colomé also has a low spin rate on his four-seam fastball, which most of the Rockies starters also have had success with as well. His spin rate was 2101 RPM in 2021, which was 39th-lowest among the 263 pitchers to face at least 250 batters in 2021. For comparison, Antonio Senzatela was 37th, Germán Márquez was 31st, and Austin Gomber was 18th.
So, in theory, Colomé *should* be a good fit for the Rockies and should outperform those projections and, perhaps, he will be able to be the Rockies’ closer for 2022 and he could get a contract with the Rockies for longer.