6:38pm: Senzatela told Saunders postgame that the soreness is at the bottom of his forearm near his elbow (Twitter link). The righty is headed for further evaluation tomorrow but conceded he’s concerned about the injury.
3:09pm: An already beleaguered Rockies rotation took yet another hit Wednesday, as right-hander Antonio Senzatela departed after 2 2/3 innings due to what manager Bud Black announced after the game as right forearm tightness, per Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post. Senzatela surrendered three runs prior to his departure, with his final pitch resulting in a two-run homer by Andrew McCutchen.
Senzatela only just returned from a roughly year-long absence due to a torn ACL. Wednesday’s outing was only his second of the 2023 season. In 7 2/3 innings, he’s allowed four runs on seven hits and a pair of walks with four strikeouts. Three of those seven hits have left the yard.
The Rockies are already without top starter German Marquez, whose 2023 season is over due to Tommy John surgery. They’ve also already released right-hander Jose Urena, who opened the season in the rotation after re-signing on a $3.5MM deal. Rookie right-hander Noah Davis, who’d also been auditioning for a long-term spot in the rotation, landed on the injured list in late April due to inflammation in his right elbow.
If Senzatela misses any time, the Rockies’ rotation will be down to Kyle Freeland, Austin Gomber, Ryan Feltner and Connor Seabold. Feltner has just 28 Major League starts under his belt and a career 5.90 ERA. Seabold has just 15 Major League games — only eight of them starts — and a 7.40 ERA through 45 innings. The Rockies are exceptionally thin on rotation options beyond that group. Right-hander Peter Lambert relieved Senzatela today and could be an option, but he pitched just 30 1/3 innings from 2020-22 combined due to injuries. His workload will surely be monitored in 2023.
Available options outside the organization are few and far between, though a handful of veteran arms were recently designated for assignment. The Rays designated Chase Anderson just today, while righties Luis Cessa and Chase De Jong were designated by the Reds and Pirates, respectively, yesterday. It’s hardly the most exciting group of arms, but each is at least stretched out to throw multiple innings. The free-agent market isn’t much better. Left-hander Madison Bumgarner was released by the D-backs earlier this season after looking lost on the mound through his first several turns. There are a handful of veterans of some note who remain unsigned from the offseason (e.g. Michael Pineda, Chris Archer, Mike Minor, Dallas Keuchel), but no one from that group would be ready to step right into a big league rotation.
Senzatela, 28, is in the second season of a five-year, $50.5MM contract extension. The Rockies are paying him $7.25MM in 2023 and will owe him $12MM per season from 2024-26 before deciding on a $14MM club option for the 2027 season. In 677 career innings entering play today, the right-hander carried a 4.85 ERA with a 15.3% strikeout rate, 7.1% walk rate and 50.6% ground-ball rate.
Back in the day, MLB guys had a “sore arm” and they’d be pitching again 5 days later, with no apparent ill effects; but today, guys have “forearm tightness” and usually won’t be pitching again for 14+ months.
And that’s why they’d be out of baseball by age 30
Yeah…much better that they miss ages 27-29. That way they can join the group of Bumgarner, Archer, Pineda etc that no one wants to sign anyway.
Warren Spahn led the NL in complete games for 6-7 years, with totals in excess of 20. Starting at age 35.
Max effort for fewer innings wasn’t a thing back in the day. Now it’s the standard. Everyone’s bullpen throws 99+ and has a bunch of crazy splitters and sliders so most teams don’t care if the starter barely goes 5.
Then why pay the starter crazy money to go five?
Good question. Why do they do that? I guess that’s just the current market? Why pay DeGrom to pitch 100 innings a season?
I get the ‘current market’ stuff.
But think about how all this Moneyball stuff started. Putting a dollar value on wins. What good is a lights out starter
for $30+ million if he (1) doesn’t get enough run support and (2) is on the shelf 30-40% of the time?
What crazy money starter goes 5 on average? I’m talking 30M plus?
Those guys are going 6-7 innings of 1-2 run ball majority of the time. Guys like Senzatala making 7M is hardly crazy money in today’s game.
As to why it’s not crazy money, it’s the infusion of big TV money mostly and a very healthy market. And a powerful enough Player’s Union to force the owners to share that new money instead of pocketing it. That’s my take.
I was responding to this…
“Everyone’s bullpen throws 99+ and has a bunch of crazy splitters and sliders so most teams don’t care if the starter barely goes 5.”
In my case, the money is not the real issue. It’s how much length you can get out of ALL your starters, and how much is that worth vice building a stud-filled bullpen with the money you’d spend on one (or two) mega-starters who wind up on the IL.
there’s another way to look at the argument. Some teams aren’t building their roster for April. You get guys like deGrom, Scherzer, Verlander for October. They get paid the salary during the season, but earn it in October. Whatever you get during the regular season is gravy. As long as they pitch in the big games and you get there, does anyone really care?
That makes sense.
From a payroll standpoint, I just think it’s more economically feasible to develop good starting pitching than to try and buy it.
Senzatela’s contract extension was one of the worst in recent memory. He‘s just not worth even close to what he got.
His contract is quite small by today’s standards. Average value of $10m a year. That’s completely fine for a reliable starter. If they allowed him to leave they’d have had to spend much more to replace him.
I read your comment then looked up the numbers. Yeah you are right. WTF were they all drunk that day or something? That kinda money for those numbers?
Not even close to one of the worst. He’s been much better than Strasburg for one fifth the cost.
Terrible comparison. Strasburg was very good at one time. One of the better pitchers during the years leading up to his latest contract. Hasn’t worked out for Washington but the market at the time had him earning that contract. The guy wrote about in the article? That contract is a head scratcher.
OK fine. I won’t waste my time anymore.
So even with hindsight you’d rather give Strasburg his contract over Senzatela? I would love for you to become the GM of my team’s biggest rival
I said at the time Strasburgs contract was worth it to him and the team. Certainly not now. You are the only one who brought up hindsight. This guys contract makes people wonder why he ever got what he did. He was never really anything special. It’s a simple comment. Don’t overthink.
Even without hindsight, I flinch at MANY pitchers contracts, boss. To me, anything longer than three years… huge, unwarranted risk. And with that, anything past 35… one year deals only.
The Yanks have burned hundreds of millions trying to buy pitching. I just don’t think long drals for those guys pay off.
WTF let’s just keep adding to a simple comment. I don’t like the long term contracts especially for pitchers. I thought the Strasburg contract was crazy but that was the deal his team thought was fair. At the time it could be warranted. Maybe to much but that’s how markets get set.Some of you on here just need to learn to take what is said and not add a bunch of sht to it. Boss.
WTFO. Didn’t mean to infringe on your monologue(s). boss.
Won’t make that mistake again.
The guy can be a solid #4 starter when healthy. Which would be a bargain at that price. Any pitcher contact of that length is gambling on the pitcher’s health; looks like Rockies are losing this particular bet.
Anthony DeSclafani got 3 years, $36 million and is a legitimate middle of the rotation starter. That’s just one example. Senzatela is a mediocre #5 starter at best. Huge overpay.
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
Same thing as Max Fried?
The new pandemic.
I guess throwing heat shouldn’t be status quo for pitching sucess?
Throwing heat never should have been status quo for pitching success.
It’s the recent analytics phenomenon/addiction. The spreadsheet dweebs look at players like parts of a video game.
That’s why you get
(1) Starters who can’t go seven and/or stay healthy
(2) Relievers who throw 100 but can’t pitch two innings or keep from getting clocked.
Ownership still convinced they’ll hit .500
That was quite a quote from Rockies ownership. Nice stadium, cool team colors, loyal fanbase but a very jarring front office and equally complacent owner.
They are 8-2 over their last 10. And the two losses were pitcher’s duels that they lost 1-0 and 2-0. They are playing good ball. Is it REALLY that far fetched?
Well good luck to you then.
Too bad. Right in the middle of the Rockies’ annual “oh my god they’re still in MLB? and how did they get close to 500?” hot streak. Won again today. One of the best bullpens in baseball and they’re getting just enough hitting to win. Typically, this goes until the altitude kills them in about August, and they end up drafting right around 9 or 10. Like clockwork.
Well thank goodness they stashed logan Allen down at triple A! Lol! He should give up quite a few dingers at Coors Field.
Is AAA still Springs?
If so, that’s 7000 feet up. Even higher than Denver.
AAA has been Albuquerque for a while. Still hitter-friendly but not extreme, especially since I think they now use a humidor there.
Enjoy your Thomas E. John Jr., Senzatela. Hope the time off allows you to clear your head and decide to open up a Subway franchise in Venezuela you bum. You weren’t good enough to play soccer or tough enough to be a revolutionary so you decided to ruin the Colorado Rockies. Get out of here with yourself
Thanks for causing me to spray redbull on my computer monitor
Through your nose?
Stay classy, slidecheese
Anderson, DeJong, and Cessa are looking pretty good right now. Better act fast while they’re stretched out. Oh, and we’ll see you next August or September, Antonio……MAYBE. Have to allow for a setback or two.
Can I as a Phillies fan interest you for a trade of Bailey Falter?
I think a CJ Cron for Bailey Falter deal could be good. With possibly a couple of other pieces added to one or both sides. It would allow Montero to come up and play first for the Rox and allow Cron to cover first for the Phillies and get Bryce back to DH where he should be.
Is it possible for the Rockies 2024 season to already be over long before it starts?
teams with no shot at a competitive season in 2024: royals, rockies, white sox, nationals, and obviously las vegas.
Considering they did nothing to improve the team over the winter and continue to profess they like the players they have a lot, it was pretty clear to those of us who are not delusional to expect more of the same in ‘23. The FO and owner are satisfied with mediocrity.