Found December 22, 2011 on
Over The Baggy:
Toronto Blue Jays
Los Angeles Angels
San Diego Padres
Fox Sport’s Ken
Rosenthal reported last night that the Twins were nearing an agreement with
pitcher Jason Marquis to fill out the remaining open slot in the rotation.
Here’s what I
wrote about him in the TwinsCentric Offseason GM Handbook:
“Jason Marquis’s one redeeming quality
at this point is his ability to induce ground balls as his 54.5% worm-burning
rate was in the top 12 among pitchers who threw a minimum of 120 innings.
Outside of that, he offers very little except for maybe “veteran leadership.”
After a midseason trade to the Diamondbacks, who wanted some of that sweet “VL”
for their youthful rotation, Marquis fractured his fibula and was placed on the
DL for the balance of the season. He’s likely staring down a “make good” type
of contract in the face.”
To the first
point – Marquis’s worm-killing abilities – he’s been very good in this
department. Since 2008, while throwing a minimum of 500 innings, Marquis has induced
the ninth-highest rate of groundballs:
Now, in 2010,
with a combination of JJ Hardy and Orlando Hudson patrolling the middle of the diamond,
this might have been significant “get” for the Twins. Comparatively, last year’s
model was nowhere close to the ’10 version. The more recent model managed to
convert 73.1% of all grounders into outs which wound up being the
worst conversation rate in all of baseball. Yes, the Twins did bring in
Jamey Carroll this winter to cut down on the amount of blatant mistakes made by
the ’11 shortstops but at his age, his range
is far from being someone able to elevate a ground-ball pitcher’s game. While
singles through the hole are not the source of major damage, we’ve seen what it
can do when a pitcher has to throw more pitches, with more runners on base and gives
the other team opportunity to connect with a big blast.
this problem further is that the entire staff (with the exception of Scott
Baker and Francisco Liriano) was all cut from the pitch-to-contact clothe. The
Twins rotation only struck out 14.8% of batters faced – second-lowest only
ahead of Pittsburgh in 2011. Because of this woeful ability to avoid contact,
the presumption was that the rotation needed to inject someone with a power arm
capable of registering strikeouts. Unfortunately, Marquis does not help fit
this bill at all: Since 2008, he’s 12.4% strikeout percentage has been the
eighth-lowest in baseball.
Twins have long favored control artists, those that eschew walks and force
hitters to put the ball into play. While Marquis gets plenty of in-play
results, he is actually a bit on the erratic side when it comes to not allowing
walks -- issuing free passes in 8.6 percent of plate appearances. Combine this
abnormally high walk rate (for a control-based pitcher anyways) with a low
strikeout rate and Marquis owns the second-lowest strikeouts-to-walk rate dating
back to ’08 (1.44 K/BB).
want to compare Marquis to Carl Pavano based on their similar styles, peripherals,
contact rates and batted ball results. Judging solely on those traits, yes, Marquis
and Pavano are quite similar. The significant difference is what kind of pitches
the pair get hitters to put into play. Since 2008, Pavano has been the foremost
expert at getting hitters to chase after his pitch out of the strike zone (he’s
gotten 33.9% of all out-of-zone pitches) meaning opponents are putting more “bad
pitches” into play. In that same time, Marquis has been the fifth-worst in
baseball at getting opponents to stray after pitches (just 25.7% swing rate at
all out-of-zone pitches). Only Livan Hernandez, Brad Penny, Trevor Cahill and
Aaron Cook have been worse than Marquis. To summarize: When Pavano misses the
zone, he gets hitters to chase. When Marquis misses the zone, hitters hold and
frequently draw walks.
Those are the
essential shortcomings for the Twins in signing a guy like Marquis – he doesn’t
fit the defense personnel (one that might be better at catching flies), could
bring down the strikeout rate and walks a high proportion of hitters. On the
other hand, Marquis is fairly consistent when healthy and able to throw over
190+ innings. (His season-ending injury in 2011, a fractured
fibula courtesy of an Angel Pegan grounder off the leg, does not suggest
that he will have any problems staying healthy in 2012.) The Twins need some
stability in the rotation and reduce the need for the bullpen (which already
figures to be fairly weak in depth). That’s about the best thing you can say
about Marquis – he can provide stability – outside of that, do not anticipate
Addendum: The bone chips which
required surgery in 2010 does raise a bit of a red flag. In 2010, then with the
Washington Nationals, Marquis was experiencing discomfort in his elbow. He attempted
to rest and rehab through it but during a rehab start bone chips in his pitching
elbow flared up and he decided to move forward with surgery. Like Nathan,
Baker and Blackburn before him, it is possible that Marquis might eventually
run down the same path where the trio of Twins needed additional time on the DL
or, in Nathan’s case, Tommy John surgery. However, his pain-free 2011 season
may be an indication that the bone chip issue did not or possibly will not
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The Minnesota Twins have signed right-handed starter Jason Marquis to a one-year deal worth $3 million.Marquis is joining his fifth team in as many seasons. The 33-year-old spent last 2011 between the Washington Nationals and Arizona Diamondbacks, going 8-6 with a 4.43 ERA in 132 innings.Marquis' best season came in 2004, when he won 16 games with a 3.71 ERA with the St. Louis...
MINNEAPOLIS The Minnesota Twins have added several free agent position players so far this offseason, and it appears they may soon be adding a pitcher.According to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, the Twins are close to acquiring pitcher Jason Marquis. The 33-year-old right-hander has spent 12 seasons in the big leagues and made 23 starts last year for the Washington Nationals and...
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Right-hander Jason Marquis has agreed to a one-year, $3 million deal with the Minnesota Twins.
It looks like Jason Marquis might be headed to the Twins. It is a solid move for the Twinkies who could use a middle of the rotation arm with experience. Click HERE to read more.
Right-hander Jason Marquis has agreed to a one-year, $3 million deal with the Minnesota Twins.
The Minnesota Twins added more depth to their pitching staff on Thursday, signing veteran Jason Marquis to a one-year, $3 million contract.
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Twins Centric wonders if the Minnesota infield defense is up to supporting Jason Marquis’s ground ball tendencies.
The Twins are nearing a deal with starting pitcher Jason Marquis, Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports reports.