The title kind of says it all, doesn’t it? Granted, this isn’t news from the lips of Jerry Dipoto, some unnamed source in the Angels front office or a radio DJ in Cleveland. It is, however, straight from the mouth of Bronson Arroyo. At least, that’s what Mark Sheldon of MLB.com is saying.
Assuming Arroyo isn’t lying, what would it mean to add the 36 year-old starting pitcher to the Angels rotation?
Well, first, you have to not think about Arroyo in these terms. Don’t do it. Click the link? Sure. Just don’t hit play. Besides, contracts are weird things. And the Angels could easily have it written into the contract that Arroyo is not allowed to do gigs in bars because it would hamper the image of the organization.
Secondly: How well would Arroyo pitch in Anaheim?
Great America Ballpark is a hitters park. And considering Arroyo doesn’t have overly-dominant stuff, it should surprise no one that his fly ball tendencies have left him vulnerable to home runs. This should (I say should because we all know that Joe Blanton kind of killed the fly ball theory in Anaheim) get negated if Arroyo were to pitch in the bigger parks in the AL West.
Third: What are some positives about Mr. Grunge?
He has long hair, which is a start. Fits right in with the current starting rotation. Plus, it would give C.J. Wilson a new Head and Shoulders commercial partner. He also eats up innings. From 2005 through 2013, Arroyo pitched 200 innings in each of those seasons except for one. And the one season he didn’t tally 200 innings (2011), he pitched 199. I’m going to go ahead and say that that is close enough. His strikeout-rate has been steady the last five seasons while his walk-rate has fallen. And his WHIP has dropped in each of the last three seasons.
Sounds great, right? Dipoto should absolutely have already signed him to some kind of deal, right? Well, no. I have one reservation about the idea of the Angels signing Arroyo to any kind of deal. And that is that it would scream “Joe Blanton.”
Think about it. All of the qualities that I just mentioned above, are the same exact qualities that I was using to try and justify the Angels signing of Blanton last offseason. Good K-rate, shrinking walk-rate, he’s moving to a pitchers park, yadda yadda yadda. And Blanton was entering his age-32 season. Arroyo is entering his age-37 season. Zoinks!
The whole idea now looks, feels and smells like teen spirit, er, catastrophe. This is why you should not click the link above. All the grunginess, it is just, stuck to me.
On its face, this seems like a smart move. You can get Arroyo for a decent dollar amount, slot him in the rotation behind Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson, maybe even Masahiro Tanaka (Please, pretty please, let this happen). His numbers should at least be similar to what he did last year, if not better because of the ball park adjustments.
But…I just…I can’t do it. I can’t get behind this idea. The Angels needed pitching last year, and badly. They went out and got seemingly “ok” pitchers to fill two rotation spots. Those two rotation spots became nearly as worthless to the team as a copy of How to be a Better Hair Braider would be to a person with male pattern baldness.
Get pitching, Dipoto. But please, don’t get pitching in the form of Bronson Arroyo. Just…don’t.