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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Cardinals Extend Jake Westbrook for another season

    Cardinals announce a contract extension with Jake Westbrook that carries through the 2013 season & includes a mutual option for 2014.
    https://twitter.com/Cardinals/status/238018243867062272

    2012 numbers and ranks (out of 120 qualifying starters)
    12-9
    154.1 IP (27th - tied with Josh Johnson)
    3.50 ERA (30th)
    3.60 FIP (27th - tied with Jered Weaver)
    3.75 xFIP (33rd)

    Over the last two seasons thus far
    24-18, 337.2 IP, 4.13 ERA, 3.96 FIP, 3.93 xFIP


    I don't understand why they did this already.

    He is basically a league average starter, almost exactly, but has been pretty solid this year over last year.


    Still don't see why they did this already, still enough time that he could get hurt.

    But overall it's the right move. The Cards have a lot of prospects that should be vying for the rotation by 2014, but 2013 could still have an opening for Westbrook.

    I have never been a fan of his, but it's alright I guess. You can certainly depend on him.

  2. #2
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    Jul 2010
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    Have to assume next years Cardinals rotation will be

    1. Wainwright
    2. Garcia
    3. Lynn
    4. Miller
    5. Westbrook

    With Carpenter a possibility, we don't know if he will be able to pitch again or not until ST.

    The Cardinals should have 3 of their top pitching prospects expected to be in AA or AAA in 2013, so depending how Westbrook does in 2013, will depend on 2014.


    This might be the end of Kyle Lohse, who has been great since returning from surgery in 2011. You have to assume with Boras that Lohse has priced himself out of the Cardinals desired reach in 2013.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffy25 View Post
    Have to assume next years Cardinals rotation will be

    1. Wainwright
    2. Garcia
    3. Lynn
    4. Miller
    5. Westbrook

    With Carpenter a possibility, we don't know if he will be able to pitch again or not until ST.

    The Cardinals should have 3 of their top pitching prospects expected to be in AA or AAA in 2013, so depending how Westbrook does in 2013, will depend on 2014.


    This might be the end of Kyle Lohse, who has been great since returning from surgery in 2011. You have to assume with Boras that Lohse has priced himself out of the Cardinals desired reach in 2013.
    i think that if carp is back, then miller might start the year in AAA

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ciaban View Post
    i think that if carp is back, then miller might start the year in AAA
    which is kind of crazy considering the way he has pitched of late.

    Last 8 starts
    6-1, 47.2 IP, 17 ER, 3.21 ERA, 54 K, 4 BB

    13.5 K/BB

    Ever since he was taken off the 'no-shake' rule he has been unhittable with excellent control.

    Hard to keep that in Memphis

    I think he would at least be sent to the bullpen.

  5. #5
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    yeah i see Miller in AAA if Carp is healthy. At some point one of the cards 5 SP's will get hurt and Miller can get the call then

  6. #6
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    I NEVER thought i would say this....Losing Loshe would suck

    However I agree with you Jeffy. Boras has some room to grab Loshe some a good chunck of change due to his performance.
    TWINSIES!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    1,729
    No complaints here. Absolutely love Westbrook in the back-end of the Cardinals rotation. He's one of the best #3/4's in the game.
    http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/oscar-taveras
    ~ Oscar Taveras ~ The next Phenom

  8. #8
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    Apr 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffy25 View Post
    which is kind of crazy considering the way he has pitched of late.

    Last 8 starts
    6-1, 47.2 IP, 17 ER, 3.21 ERA, 54 K, 4 BB

    13.5 K/BB

    Ever since he was taken off the 'no-shake' rule he has been unhittable with excellent control.

    Hard to keep that in Memphis

    I think he would at least be sent to the bullpen.
    I'm surprised Cards let their top pitching prospects pitch in the PCl. Most teams have their top pitching specs jump right over the PCL.

  9. #9
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    The St. Louis Cardinals and Jake Westbrook have agreed to an extension. The new contract is reportedly a one-year, $8.75 million contract for 2013 with a superfluous mutual option worth $9.5 million for 2014 with a $1 million buyout. While the mutual option seems increasingly prevalent, given that it is usually irrelevant in practice, it might be more straightforward to think of this deal as a guaranteed deal for one year and just under $10 million dollars.

    Back in 2010, Westbrook was having a mediocre season (4.66 ERA, 4.25 FIP) for Cleveland after almost completely missing the prior two seasons due to injury. Traded to the Cardinals for the stretch run, he pitched quite well for 12 starts for St. Louis (3.48 ERA, 3.52 FIP). Whether it was Dave Duncan‘s “magic” or not, the Cardinals liked what they saw, and gave him a two-year contract for 2011 and 2012 and, you guessed it, a mutual option for 2013 (which the new contract replaces).

    In 2011, Westbrook’s past, aging, and regression all seemed to break whatever spell Duncan had cast. Although Westbrook kept the ground balls coming, his strikeout rate dropped back to about that of his 2010 pre-St. Louis rate, while his walk rate was his worst in years. With a 4.66 ERA, Westbrook did not even initially make the Cardinal’s playoff roster, although he was added and pitched out of the bullpen in World Series.

    Given his age (34) and recent performance, it is a bit surprising that Westbrook is pitching pretty much as well in 2012 (3.50 ERA, 3.60 FIP) as he did after initially being traded to the Cardinals in 2010. His strikeout rate is still poor (and at his age, it probably is not coming back), but his control seems to be as good as it ever been over a full season. Which Westbrook is the “real” one, the #2 starter of the last part of 2010 and 2012 thus far, or the back-of-the-rotation “innings eater” of 2011? Obviously, this matters a great deal to the Cardinals.

    The most simple, boring answer, at least from the numbers, is that he is likely somewhere in between. On one hand, nothing obvious in Westbrook’s numbers this year seem to scream “luck.” His BABIP is not abnormally low (.298), and it is right in line with his career numbers. His ERA and FIP are pretty close to each other, too, as they have been over the course of his career (career: 4.26 ERA, 4.12 FIP). One area that might be subject to some regression is his lower home run/fly ball rate in 2012 (and the small sample of his first partial season in St. Louis). There is some evidence that ground ball pitchers like Westbrook tend to give up home runs on balls that do go in the air. On the other hand, the Cardinals’ home park suppresses home runs. Still, if Westbrook continues to keep the ball on the ground, a bit of random variation and regression on his air balls should not make that much of a difference.

    On the other hand, while Westbrook has had more than 150 innings of being very good this year, he had 180 of being pretty bad last year. While Dave Duncan does seem to be able to help many pitchers (and it is worth noting that Duncan has been on a leave of absence all year), that does not make Westbrook’s prior history go away — emphasizing his 2010 Cardinals stint can tend to gloss over the fact that Westbrook was medicore overall in 2010. Put more simply: 2012 is really Westbrook’s first full season of being good since about 2006. It is unlikely that he is establishing a new level of performance at 35.

    Westbrooks’ primary pitch is still his sinker, which he mixes with a cutter and slider (the proportion of the two varies depending on whose classification one prefers). Against left-handed bats, Westbrook mixes in a good number of change-ups. That has been his pattern for a while. I will leave a more detailed analysis to the Pitchf/x gurus, which I am decidedly not. Simply looking at the raw numbers, the main difference between the Good Westbrook (2012) and Mediocre Westbrook (2010 and 2011) is that Good Westbrook does not walk left-handed batters as much. I cannot find any obvious big differences in, say, his change-up usage that might explain what is different this year against lefties.

    That does not mean that nothing is different, just that nothing stands out. Nor is it to dismiss the results. the point is just that there is no obvious reason to unduly emphasize Westbrooks 2012 or pre-2011 performance beyond what we would do in projecting a player. In 2013, Westbrook’s true talent ERA/FIP is probably in the low 4s. Over a full season, that probably makes him about a two-win player. For $10 million, that is probably fair for a player like Westbrook.

    This is not to say that the Cardinals are getting a steal — after all, Westbrook has had serious injury issues in the past, has only pitched 200 or more innings once since 2006, and is in his mid-30s. However, given the Cardinals roster of talented but less-than-spry players, shoring up the middle and back of their starting rotation is a good idea. Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, and Jaime Garcia cannot exactly be penciled in for 220 innings each next season and Kyle Lohse (~!) is having a good season and will probably command some money in free agency. So even with Lance Lynn looking good and perhaps Shelby Miller really being ready (I’ll leave that one to others), there likely will be plenty of innings for a guy like Westbrook. Jake Westbrook is probably not the #2 pitcher he has looked like this season. However, he is likely to be better than most other #4 starters in the league, and with Cardinals looking at another shot at contention in 2013, signing Westbrook makes a lot of sense.
    fangraphs

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Brink View Post
    I'm surprised Cards let their top pitching prospects pitch in the PCl. Most teams have their top pitching specs jump right over the PCL.
    you should look at his HR rate. It's the whole reason for his 'failings' this season. Hard to keep the ball in those ballparks.

    I think his prospect status should remain about where it was coming into the season. A potential future number one caliber starter, a number 3 at the worst, a safe bet to be a number 2.

    Most comparisons to Shelby Miller are to Matt Cain (John Sickels own words)

  11. #11
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    Miller definitely has nasty stuff. I watched him in Single A and he looked very nasty. The guy just has to trust his catcher/manager as he's been doing in recent starts.

    I like the westbrook extension. I don't think we will extend him after next years season though. He will probably have another solid 10-14 win season and be around .500 or better like he has in the past. The guy has induced the most GIDP's in the mlb I do believe.

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