With the influx of new blood infused into the Indians organization over the past month and a half, it seems like we are getting a test of something new every game. Guys like Matt LaPorta, Chris Perez, Andy Marte, and Jess Todd have gotten plenty of opportunities to show that they are indeed a part of this team’s future.
The next kid to get his chance is 22-year old Carlos Carrasco. The right-handed starting pitcher will be recalled today to make his major league debut for the Tribe in Detroit against the Tigers.
Before their was Kyle Drabek in the Philadelphia system, there was Carrasco. He throws hard and was said to have considerable upside as a top of the rotation starter. Carrasco, who was the starting pitcher for the World team in last year’s MLB Future’s game, was deemed “untouchable” at last year’s trading deadline when the Phillies were looking to add veterans to aid their World Series push.
He struggled in AAA Lehigh Valley this year (20 Starts, 6-9, 5.18 ERA, 112 K’s, 38 Walks, 114.2 IP) and became expendable. So the Indians jumped at the chance to add this one-time top prospect in the Phillies system considering his high strikeout numbers and young age. The thought was that maybe a change of scenery would do him some good.
So far, so good for Carrasco as a member of the Indians organization.
In six starts, Carlos is 5-1 with a 3.19 ERA. In 42.1 IP, he has posted a very impressive 0.89 WHIP, striking out 36 and walking just seven. All signs point to him being ready for the big club. Tuesday, he gets that shot.
“I’m excited to see him, to get him up here and get him started on this part of his journey,” Eric Wedge said. “As a young pitcher, I don’t want anybody to expect too much, I don’t think that’s fair to the kid, but I just want him to come up here and get as comfortable as possible, help him relax and have fun.”
Adding Carrasco to the rotation means a move must be made. With rookie David Huff at his career high in innings pitched, Wedge and Mark Shapiro have decided the best thing to do is to go to a six man rotation, giving Huff, Aaron Laffey, and Jeremy Sowers all extra rest.
”We’re just skipping a start for Huff,” Wedge said. ”We’ll pick spots for some of the other guys to be skipped. When you get into September, skipping guys and getting them extra work days on the side isn’t a bad thing.”
The rotation options for 2010 look very intriguing and wide-open. Laffey and Justin Masterson are the locks, and expect David Huff to be in the rotation as well. Who knows what you are going to get out of the up and down Fausto Carmona and Jake Westbrook who will be returning after a year and a half hiatus. Then you have Sowers who is out of options and has pitched much better of late and the organization’s top pitching prospect, Hector Rondon along with Carrasco.
That is why this last month could be crucial for Carrasco to get a leg up on his competition. That all starts tonight in Detroit.
(photo by Danny Wild/MLB.com)