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Scott Diamond had elbow surgery to remove bone chip

Dec 21, 2012, 1:28 PM EDT

Scott Diamond Getty Getty Images

As if the Twins’ rotation wasn’t in rough enough shape already, presumptive Opening Day starter Scott Diamond recently underwent surgery to remove a bone chip from his elbow.

General manager Terry Ryan said today that Diamond will not pitch for Canada in the World Baseball Classic, but is expected to be ready for spring training.

Diamond started 27 games for the Twins with a 3.54 ERA after beginning the season at Triple-A, but his weak strikeout rate of 4.7 per nine innings will make it tough for the 26-year-old left-hander to maintain that type of performance.

  1. Ben - Dec 21, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    Noooooo, not our “ace”

  2. proudlycanadian - Dec 21, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    It is a slow news day and I do not begrudge Aaron the chance to write up stories about his Twins.

    Did I mention that Diamond is a Canuck?

  3. tashkalucy - Dec 21, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    “Diamond started 27 games for the Twins with a 3.54 ERA after beginning the season at Triple-A, but his weak strikeout rate of 4.7 per nine innings will make it tough for the 26-year-old left-hander to maintain that type of performance.”

    How do you KNOW that?

    First thing that came to me when I read it was Jamie Moyer…..for how many years?

    • byjiminy - Dec 21, 2012 at 7:09 PM

      How do you know that? By comparing the strikeout rates of EVERY PITCHER IN HISTORY with their career stats. It’s no secret that the lower the strikeout rate rate, the lower the likelihood of success. Of course there are exceptions. Many exceptions. That’s why he said, “…will make it tough…to maintain” not “means his performance will drop.” It’s just a general statistical correlation, not a direct link, but K rate can often be a better predictor of future ERA than one year’s previous ERA, or at least useful supplementary information. It’s just a red flag, something to watch out for. Jamie Moyer pitching till he’s 80 doesn’t mean that pitchers don’t USUALLY get worse after age 35; while there are exceptions, in general, age correlates somewhat with performance, so you should be wary of, and even expect, a drop-off as pitchers age — or if they have a low K rate. I’m not saying Moyer isn’t relevant — he’s a perfect example that there are always exceptions to statistical trends. Still, don’t be surprised if Diamond’s ERA goes up next year. It may not, but it’s more likely that it will go up than down, and perhaps disastrously.

      If you are a Twins fan all I’ll need to say as a counter-example to Jamie Moyer is “Nick Blackburn.” He had a great ERA for a couple years, too, despite a very low K rate. The Twins signed him to a long term contract, Gleeman wrote that given his low K rate that was probably unwise, and now he has one of the highest ERAs of any starter, probably won’t make the rotation, and is owed five million dollars next year.

      Gleeman’s not exactly going out on a limb to say, be wary of a 4.7 K rate. That’s what he said when the Twins re-signed Pavano, and when they signed Jason Marquis. It’s what he said when they signed Correia and Pelfrey this year. You can often get a year or two out of guys like this — as they did with Pavano — but it usually doesn’t last.

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