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Ubaldo Jimenez has allowed 21 runs in 21 innings for Indians

Aug 22, 2011, 11:41 AM EDT

Cleveland Indians v Chicago White Sox Getty Images

Cleveland gave up such a valuable package of prospects to get Ubaldo Jimenez from Colorado in large part because he’s signed through 2014 and thus not simply a stretch-run pickup, but the Indians can’t be happy with how he’s looked in the early on.

Jimenez failed to make it out of the fourth inning yesterday against the Tigers, coughing up a career-high eight runs, and has now allowed 21 runs in 21 innings for the Indians.

Jimenez’s inconsistent velocity was a potential red flag leading up to the trade deadline and health-related worries reportedly scared off some teams. In both 2009 and 2010 he averaged 96.1 miles per hour with his fastball, but yesterday he averaged 93.1 miles per hour and topped out at 95.9 mph. That’s still plenty fast, but a three-mph drop from a 27-year-old is significant and has been Jimenez’s story all year.

Cleveland acquired Jimenez to make 110 starts, not four starts, but if he can’t provide big-time value down the stretch this season and in 2012 the trade is only going to look worse once prospects Drew Pomeranz and Alex White arrive in the majors for good.

  1. Chris Fiorentino - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:44 AM

    Didn’t the 2014 option disappear when he was traded…thus he is only Cleveland’s through 2013?

    • dodger88 - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:53 AM

      Correct, there was clause dropping the 2014 option if he was traded.

      • uyf1950 - Aug 22, 2011 at 4:03 PM

        I think more accurately it says the “option may be voided” by the player if traded. If he continues to pitch the way he has so far he may not be so quick to void the option year.

  2. AK47 - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:47 AM

    Drop in velocity usually indicates elbow or shoulder problems and even though Jimenez doesn’t rely on his slider as much as some – it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if he ends up needing surgery (TJ would be my guess) in the near future – so there goes at least 30 of those starts…

    • amr5026 - Aug 22, 2011 at 1:17 PM

      Though I agree with you, I was under the impression his MRI came back “remarkably clean” (I think that was the exact wording in the quote in the article I read). Or was that only the MRI on his shoulder and not the elbow?

      • deathmonkey41 - Aug 22, 2011 at 9:49 PM

        Which was weird because I read the main reason the deal with the Yankees fell through was because they wouldn’t let them do an MRI.

  3. dodger88 - Aug 22, 2011 at 11:55 AM

    I’m all for selling high but you have to figure if the Rockies were willing to move Jimenez they had concerns about his long term health and productivity.

  4. takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:20 PM

    or maybe he just is not as good as his first half last year would indicate. Fausto Carmona won 19 games in 2007 and finished 3rd in the AL Cy Young voting, but hasn’t been above .500 since.

    Cleveland did a pretty thorough physical on Ubaldo prior to the trade and found no issues. My guess is he is a decent 1 or 2 starter, but not nearly as good as last year, and probably not as bad as he’s been this year.

  5. Charles Gates - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:30 PM

    Ohio does not have an ‘Ubaldo’ vanity plate.

  6. yankeesgameday - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:31 PM

    The fact that Colorado was willing to trade this guy at all is everything you need to know. They were brilliant in getting a return for a pitcher they knew was going to suffer a massive decline. The Indians were swindled and should never be allowed in a pool hall ever again.

  7. contraryguy - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:41 PM

    if the Tribe didn’t have an unusually productive farm system they’d have no team at all.

  8. seano21 - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:46 PM

    Thank god yanks stayed away from this one

  9. mjay424 - Aug 22, 2011 at 12:56 PM

    I’m sure Indians’ fans are very concerned, if not upset about Ubaldo Jimenez’s performances and future. Yet, the rest of the story of this trade has yet to be written and won’t until we see what becomes of all the players involved over the coming years.

    If Jimenez is not hurt – then he should rebound nicely in 2012. If he is hurt, that is a big blow to Cleveland.

    The Rockies picked up four prospects, two high-quality potential ones but until they prove themselves, over time, Colorado doesn’t know what it has either, other than exciting anticipation.

    Rockies Prospects and Futures

  10. ryanmallettsbluntwrap - Aug 22, 2011 at 2:34 PM

    Lets not beat around the bush , the rockies raped the indians in this trade.

  11. humanexcrement - Aug 23, 2011 at 11:37 AM

    I think it’s clear the Rockies knew Jiminez overexerted himself last season and was breaking down. What other team that’s even close to contention trades their ace? Buyer beware.

  12. humanexcrement - Aug 23, 2011 at 11:38 AM

    Welcome to Dontrelle Willis, part 2.

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