Yency Almonte has opted to become a free agent, the right-hander announced himself via Twitter. The Rockies outrighted Almonte off their 40-man roster back on October 21, but Almonte had enough minor league service time to decide whether or not to decline the assignment and enter into free agency.
Originally joining the Rockies in the Tommy Kahnle trade with the White Sox in November 2015, Almonte has pitched in the last four MLB seasons, with inconsistent results. When Almonte has been able to keep the ball on the ground at an above-average rate, he has been good, as evidenced by his solid results in 2017 and 2019. When he hasn’t been able to keep the grounders coming, Almonte has been prone to allowing home runs, thus resulting in a 5.56 ERA in 2019 and a 7.55 ERA last season. The righty’s walk totals also spiked upwards this year, adding to Almonte’s struggles.
Overall, the 27-year-old Almonte has a 5.30 ERA, 20.7% strikeout rate, and 9.7% walk rate over his 124 career innings in the majors. Getting away from the thin air of Denver could be a boon, as Almonte has pretty pronounced home/away splits — a 6.46 ERA in 71 innings at Coors Field, and a 3.74 ERA in road games.
He can get grounders, gives up homers when the ball is put in the air and he will be cheap. Sounds like a future Pirates pitcher to me.
This year’s splits were especially skewed.
Home: 10.67 ERA, .351 BAA (38 Hits), 14 BB’s, 8 HR’s in 27.0 IP
Away: 3.48 ERA, .114 BAA (8 hits), 15 BB’s, 1 HR in 20.2 IP