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Monday Rockpile: Tyler Chatwood's Return To The Majors Speaks To Expended Depth

August 5, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies pitcher Tyler Chatwood (32) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the San Francisco Giants at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE
August 5, 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies pitcher Tyler Chatwood (32) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the San Francisco Giants at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE

On Saturday Afternoon, the Tulsa Drillers' official Twitter feed announced that Tyler Chatwood was recalled to the Rockies to take the place of Christian Friedrich in the Rockies' rotation. Friedrich, for those of you who may have missed the morbid, exasperated laughter at the state of the Rockies' roster due to injury, will miss the remainder of the 2012 season due to a lower back stress fracture. Before Sunday's game, Patrick Saunders reported that the Rockies are putting Jonathan Sanchez on the 15-day DL with left-bicep tendonitis.

As a positive note, Saunders also reported that Jorge De La Rosa threw a 25-pitch bullpen session, all straight fastballs, with no pain. But De La Rosa is another example of how this season has just gone straight down the crapper.

The 25-man opening day rotation was as such: Jeremy Guthrie (traded to Kansas City), Jamie Moyer (DFA), Juan Nicasio (60-Day DL), Jhoulys Chacin (15-day DL), Drew Pomeranz (MLB). Even if you consider that Guthrie was traded for another starting pitcher, Sanchez moving to the DL just speaks to the miserable luck this Rockies' rotation has had as far as injury goes. It's even further accentuated that when we are reminded that Jorge De La Rosa was supposed to reinforce this rotation come July, and now may pitch in September and then the Arizona Fall League, in hopes of a successful 2013.

Tyler Chatwood should not be in the majors. It's not a shot at the guy - he's not ready. I wasn't a huge fan of his acquisition to begin with (and those who know me probably recognize my existing bias in that trade), but for a guy that young, he's really a rushed pitching prospect. I was very pleased when it was announced that Chatwood would be demoted to AA Tulsa. Keeping him in the Texas League with a shot at the MLB rotation in 2013 (but pitching in AAA Colorado Springs as a more realistic outcome), to me, seemed to be the best course of action to get the most out of Tyler Chatwood.

But this is where the 2012 season has brought us. Our good starters are injured. Our young starters are injured. Even our lousy scrapheap "what's left to lose" starters (that is, Sanchez) are injured. This season was supposed to have Guthrie and Chacin pitching 200 innings, Moyer/DLR pitching something like 175 innings combined, Nicasio 150-175, and then some combination of Pomeranz, White, and Friedrich putting up another 150 innings or so. Now we're forced to have a rotation that included Pomeranz, White, and Chatwood because we're simply out of viable options right now.

Much as the Rockies' starting pitching has been absolutely terrible, I do think we HAVE to give some concessions to the way the season has unfolded. You take any close-to-competing team in MLB and knock out their best position player along with the majority of their starting rotation, and they're going to have some troubles as well. I'm not saying that any other team would be 30 games under .500, but for Pete's sake, this isn't even real.

Just gut it out for now, Rockies fans. We don't have to excuse ownership, moves made by management, anything like that, but there's no way that this team was anywhere near this bad as assembled on April 2nd.

Off Topic

Rockies' Friedrich says he has right stuff to pitch at Coors Field - The Denver Post
Friedrich is not only learning, he's listening. There is experience around him, namely in the form of Jeff Francis (seriously Rockies, keep this guy around if it's at all possible), and I feel that will be what keeps this guy in the majors.

Colorado Rockies at Los Angeles Dodgers - August 6, 2012 | Preview
We've seen better from Drew Pomeranz than the 9.35 ERA that Pomeranz has provided over his past 4 starts. Again, growth and experience is what will transform Pomeranz into the Ace that his prospect status has promised us.

Young in body and mind: Eric Young Jr. finds success with fitness - The Denver Post
A neat beefcake article about how Eric Young Jr. has worked to keep himself in Major League Baseball - namely in terms of his diet and exercise regimen.