== Q: Who wants to be an MLB pitcher for 45 days or so? A: Chris Young, I guess ==
We knew the Mariners were looking around, lest they have to hand the ball to Hector Noesi.
When all of your starters are injured, or decline to sign 45-day contracts, you think you might have to settle for Hector Noesi
If you think you might have to settle for Hector Noesi, you go to the Hector Noesi gamelog page and scan down the “ER” column.
If you go to the Hector Noesi gamelog page and scan down the “ER” column, you’ll see many entries of 7, 6, 5 and the like.
Don’t go to the Hector Noesi gamelog page and scan down the “ER” column.
Therefore, 6-10 righty Chris Young.
Young did not pitch in the majors in 2013 due to a long series of shoulder issues, but has pitched in nine MLB seasons between 2004 and 2012 with the Rangers, Padres and Mets.
But the last time he actually made a full tour of an MLB season was 2007.
Then his appearances: 18, 14, 4, 4, 20 and 0.
So I don’t know what we can conclude from the data for those seasons. They fluctuate pretty wildly, given that he apparently wasn’t quite right physically that whole time.
We can say, from the Pitch f/x data, that his max velocity dropped 3 mph between ’07 and ’08, then dropped even lower, such that in 2012 he wasn’t even busting past 85.
Even a 6-10 guy won’t be too intimidating throwing 85.
He ended up spending 2013 in AAA with the Nationals before yet another surgery. He was having a decent spring for Washington (3.48 ERA in 10.1 IP), and reportedly pain-free, but he wasn’t going to make the MLB roster, and he opted to ask for his release.
Young claims his chronic shoulder issues were “never corrected” and that his most recent surgery to correct something called “thoracic outlet syndrome” is what finally did the trick.
There does not seem to be any Pitch f/x data from his spring appearances, but the Washington Post reported he was hitting 88 and threw a “sharp slider.”
So Young is back at least closer to what he threw in his best days, and, obviously, the extreme height can make up for a few mph too.
If, in fact, some version of Bush-Administration Young could show up, is that worth having?
Yes, it would be. I highlighted in gray the three seasons Young was fully healthy. You can see he was above-average in all three, and very much so in 2007, when he did very well at avoiding homers.
And he was even not-horrible in 2008 and 2012, despite being not healthy in those years (I removed the color from 2010 and 2011 because he didn’t even face 100 batters or pitch more than 24.0 IP either year).
For a 45-day stint, Young would only need to be the kind of stop-loss pitcher he was for the Mets in 2012 (5.36 xFIP), but, if his shoulder is finally “solved” and his velo really has climbed back up several notches, then he could be a more pleasant surprise than Randy Wolf ever would have been.