Rockies make minor move to add stability to starting rotation

The veteran lefty could fill a larger role for the Rox than expected
Colorado Rockies v Arizona Diamondbacks
Colorado Rockies v Arizona Diamondbacks / John E. Moore III/GettyImages

The injury to Rockies ace Kyle Freeland opened up many holes and opportunities in this already questionable pitching staff. Freeland was placed on the 15-day IL with a left elbow strain on April 19th. Elbows, as we know, can be finicky, so there’s no telling how long until Freeland can return to the bump for the Rockies.

The corresponding move was to call up Noah Davis on April 19th as well as Ty Blach two days later in lieu of Sunday’s doubleheader. Davis pitched three innings of relief in game two before leaving with a shoulder injury and was ultimately returned to Triple-A as the 27th man for the doubleheader. With Davis going in for an MRI to determine the severity of his injury, it looks like Ty Blach is here to stay for a while.

The 33-year-old Blach was with the Rockies the last two seasons, recording a 5.56 ERA with 79 strikeouts across 44 appearances. The career numbers are nothing to write home about, but the key number for Blach is his 58 starts, including 13 last season. After another attempt of putting Peter Lambert in the rotation in Freeland’s absence failed mightily, the Rockies have a real option to put Blach in the rotation as a placeholder and let Lambert go back to the multi-inning reliever role that he has thrived in to start the season.

Blach has started in all four of his Triple-A outings this season and has actually pitched well to the tune of a 3.45 ERA and 12 strikeouts. While I understand the Rockies desire to make a quality starter out of Lambert, it’s also possible he’s just better suited for a bullpen role. Lambert has a career 6.60 ERA as a starter, compared to the 2.31 ERA he had this season prior to his start on Sunday. His start lasted just three innings as he gave up six runs in a losing effort. He has looked like a different pitcher out of the bullpen, and while I think it’s okay to give him one more start, I wouldn’t push the envelope and possibly set him up for failure.

It could be worth it to give Blach a shot in the rotation, if for no other reason to leave Lambert in a position he looks comfortable in and has been succeeding in. It might not be pretty with Blach, but he has proven that he can start games in the majors and with injury to Freeland the Rockies just need innings out of him. It’s not an ideal situation to be in, but it’s food for thought for a team that might want to protect a young arm who has done well in the pen and allow a seasoned veteran to take a starter’s load for the time being.

Also, just for fun, check out this home run Ty Blach hit back in 2017 when pitchers still hit.

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