Add Chris Nelson and His Irregular Heartbeat to the list of potential band names.
The loss of Chris Nelson and Jonathan Herrera, to an irregular heartbeat and an infected left wrist caused by wearing a watch respectively, has brought the number of Rockies on the DL to 8. In all, Colorado has lost 11 players to the DL this year (13 if you include Charlie Blackmon and Hector Gomez), some more than once, 6 position players and 5 pitchers. Is this unusual? Well, not exactly. But it's at a much higher rate than last year.
Last year Colorado had 18 DL trips (9 of each), which tied for 10th highest in the league. This year they're "on pace" for 20 players and 23 DL trips, so slightly above last year's pace. Then again, at this point last year only 7 players had been on the DL. In addition, for almost all the DL appearances this year by Colorado players, the stint has lasted considerably longer than 15 days. In fact, 7 players have been sidelined for at least 30 days:
|Player||DL start||DL finish||DL stint|
|De La Rosa||4-Apr||18-Jul||105|
That's a total of 434 days lost this year to the DL -- and if you include Blackmon and Gomez, it shoots up over 500. This is well on the way to exceeding 2011, which had a little over 800. That's because JDLR and Nicasio are both out for the season, while Chacin and Tulo aren't particularly close to returning either. While not all of the players above are even average MLB producers, losing the projected top 3 of the rotation plus the top hitter to the DL is tough to take.
Speaking of Jhoulys -- he threw well in a simulated game yesterday, though his timeline for return is still hazy.
Oh, and speaking of Tulo, Troy Renck writes that Carlos Gonzalez has become less potent without his Bash Brother in the lineup. The statistics certainly would suggest this in CarGo's case, but larger sample studies have found little or no "lineup protection" effect.
Finally, ESPN's Keith Law (Insider only) has listed Colorado's minor league system as one of the 3 that has fallen the most during 2012. He cites Chad Bettis' lost season, Nolan Arenado's lack of AA destruction, and the graduation to the majors of key prospects like Drew Pomeranz for this opinion.