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Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #1 by AlexConway » November 18th, 2013, 7:24 pm

The Orioles signed LHP Kelvin De La Cruz to a one year contract today.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=delacr001kel

http://www.masnsports.com/school_of_roch/2013/11/orioles-sign-de-la-cruz.html

A decent Lefty Reliever. Not a particularly noteworthy signing other than it makes Matusz and Patton all the more expendable. I like this move in that in might free up some money to go to a Starting Pitcher.

Any other strong thoughts?
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #2 by Old Sneakers » November 18th, 2013, 10:41 pm

Only what you pointed out. It's a solid move. Matusz is already too expensive and Patton also soon will be. Honestly I expect the team to continue trying to do just this. Not just from a performance standpoint but also to keep the payroll competitive.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #3 by Tucker Blair » November 19th, 2013, 8:38 am

Agreed.

I am all for bringing in more competition and potentially freeing up some coin in areas that they can use it to actually improve the team and not be a sunk cost.

I contacted a few scouts to see what their thoughts were on him. Will hopefully have something soon. I have never seen him pitch
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #4 by osforlife » November 19th, 2013, 9:37 am

De La Cruz has always been a strikeout pitcher. He was able to suceed as a starter until AA, where he topped out. His numbers last year don't look overly impressive(1.556 WHIP, 9.0 H/9, 5.1 BB/9), but notice how he pitched in the PCL, which is already a hitter's league to begin with, and his home park was in Albuquerque, which is most likely the most inflated minor league park in America.

I'm not sure how productive De La Cruz will be alone, but signing players like this is exactly how one builds an effective, cheap bullpen. Paying a reliever eight figures, or anything close to eight figures, is ridicilous and is always a bad investment. Dear DD, keep signing effective AAA relievers.

I'm not really sure I understand the urgency to trade Brian Matusz. I mean, is $3MM really that bad? Jim Johnson is set to earn $11MM and nobody seems to care.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #5 by Tucker Blair » November 19th, 2013, 9:45 am

osforlife wrote:De La Cruz has always been a strikeout pitcher. He was able to suceed as a starter until AA, where he topped out. His numbers last year don't look overly impressive(1.556 WHIP, 9.0 H/9, 5.1 BB/9), but notice how he pitched in the PCL, which is already a hitter's league to begin with, and his home park was in Albuquerque, which is most likely the most inflated minor league park in America.

I'm not sure how productive De La Cruz will be alone, but signing players like this is exactly how one builds an effective, cheap bullpen. Paying a reliever eight figures, or anything close to eight figures, is ridicilous and is always a bad investment. Dear DD, keep signing effective AAA relievers.

I'm not really sure I understand the urgency to trade Brian Matusz. I mean, is $3MM really that bad? Jim Johnson is set to earn $11MM and nobody seems to care.


I dunno, I think a lot of people have been very vocal on JJ making way too much money. I agree that $3MM isn't all that much, but if that is the difference between them being able to sign a better SP, then it probably is a spot the Orioles could look to shed some salary at.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #6 by Tucker Blair » November 19th, 2013, 11:04 am

I reached out to Don Olsen for a report on De La Cruz:

http://orioles-nation.com/orioles/blog/ ... e-la-cruz/
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #7 by AlexConway » November 19th, 2013, 11:13 am

TuckerBlair89 wrote:I dunno, I think a lot of people have been very vocal on JJ making way too much money. I agree that $3MM isn't all that much, but if that is the difference between them being able to sign a better SP, then it probably is a spot the Orioles could look to shed some salary at.


The Orioles had to free up $2 Million by trading Derek Lee to the Pirates in order to make the Chris Davis/Tommy Hunter deal work. So saving money where they can should be at the top of the Orioles list of priorities. $3 Million for a reliever isn't a lot, but you can pay a LOOGY a lot less and get similar results.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #8 by Old Sneakers » November 19th, 2013, 1:52 pm

$3 million for Matuzs is too much!

$10 million for Johnson is too much!

There I said it regarding both of them. The only real issue is that I don't see anyone else capable of being a closer on hand or coming cheap that is durable. I hate saying it over and over but these Joe Jordan drafts have really hurt us. But I think AlexConway is 100% right a LOOGY is not a role for premium pay. Brian Matuzs hasn't really excelled either. At that price tag you almost have to try expanding his workload. Then you have to wonder what kind of results are you going to see?

I know this is the wrong place to talk draft. But you have to almost smell college starter with two good pitches getting selected in the top 3 rounds next year and hurried through the farm system. I am hoping this is what is done. I know I don't want Wright converted out of necessity.


EDIT: Not next season, but perhaps in 2015 Dylan Bundy might be an option to convert into a closer. He already carries a ML Contract and would be a decent consolation prize (short-term) for what he could have been. I say that as even though he was out all of 2013 and will be out most of 2014 his service clock is just ticking away. Wasting 2015 building up his innings limit to be a starter might not make much sense. He will be arbitration eligible in 2017. In the meantime we are somewhat ransomed into paying top dollar to Jim Johnson.

It's still an issue though, the team will almost certainly target a closer type in next year's draft.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #9 by j.q. higgins » November 20th, 2013, 6:10 pm

depending on how the rotation shakes out...i wonder if mike wright is a guy they'd consider for closing? we know he can keep the ball on the ground and his fb would probably really play up in shorter outings.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #10 by AlexConway » November 20th, 2013, 6:21 pm

j.q. higgins wrote:depending on how the rotation shakes out...i wonder if mike wright is a guy they'd consider for closing? we know he can keep the ball on the ground and his fb would probably really play up in shorter outings.


I've heard others suggest the same, it'll be interesting to see how Wright pans out after a successful AA campaign last year as a Starter.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #11 by Tucker Blair » November 20th, 2013, 7:04 pm

I really like Mike Wright, I think some scouts discredit him unfairly because he doesn't have the best delivery.
He has the body frame that I dream of from MLB pitchers. I think he has a role on this club eventually, and I would not mind it at all if they chucked him in the bullpen for a year to get some experience under his belt.
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #12 by AlexConway » November 20th, 2013, 7:59 pm

TuckerBlair89 wrote:I really like Mike Wright, I think some scouts discredit him unfairly because he doesn't have the best delivery.
He has the body frame that I dream of from MLB pitchers. I think he has a role on this club eventually, and I would not mind it at all if they chucked him in the bullpen for a year to get some experience under his belt.


Hey Tucker, what are your thoughts in general of bringing a Starer up to the majors to be a relief pitcher? (a la Gausman last year) Do you think it helps or hinders development as a Starter?
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Re: Orioles Sign LHP Kelvin De La Cruz

PostPost #13 by ofahn » December 24th, 2013, 11:27 am

Old Sneakers wrote:Not next season, but perhaps in 2015 Dylan Bundy might be an option to convert into a closer. He already carries a ML Contract and would be a decent consolation prize (short-term) for what he could have been. I say that as even though he was out all of 2013 and will be out most of 2014 his service clock is just ticking away. Wasting 2015 building up his innings limit to be a starter might not make much sense. He will be arbitration eligible in 2017. In the meantime we are somewhat ransomed into paying top dollar to Jim Johnson.

I posted this a while back.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2104&hilit=+Dylan+Bundy
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