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Craig Kimbrel


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#41 Nigel Tufnel

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Posted 08 December 2023 - 02:26 PM

Keith Law:

 

The Orioles signed Craig Kimbrel to a one-year, $13 million deal, an uncharacteristic move for this front office given Kimbrel’s recent performance, as he’s barely been worth 2 fWAR total in the last two seasons and has become wilder and less proficient at missing bats in his mid-30s. (Phillies fans will probably tell you this is the worst signing in history.)

 

Kimbrel does still strike out a lot of batters, but he’s gone from hovering around 40 percent for most of his career to 31 percent over the last two seasons, without any improvement in his walk rate or how much hard contact he allows. He’s lost over 2 mph on his fastball since 2017 and much of the movement on his out-pitch breaking ball, although both were so good at his peak that they’re both still above-average pitches even with their respective declines. He’s got that big save total and the capital-C Closer tag, which still holds some sway in the market, but I didn’t expect this Orioles front office to pay any sort of premium for those things.

 

The Orioles were short a reliever with ace closer Félix Bautista out until 2025 after Tommy John surgery, and adding someone who will primarily work the ninth inning frees up Yennier Cano to work in higher-leverage spots earlier in games, but I don’t think this makes the Orioles much better, if at all, and takes up cash that they need to put towards the rotation.

 

How Eduardo Rodriguez, Jeimer Candelario and Craig Kimbrel fit on their new clubs: Law - The Athletic



#42 dude

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Posted 09 December 2023 - 03:07 PM

Keith Law:

 

 

How Eduardo Rodriguez, Jeimer Candelario and Craig Kimbrel fit on their new clubs: Law - The Athletic

 

We should be comfortable ignoring Keith law.


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#43 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 22 February 2024 - 11:33 AM



#44 NewMarketSean

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Posted 22 February 2024 - 12:03 PM

He's a guy I am not expecting much from. I understand the need, and he certainly has experience, but at 36 with decreasing K rates and last year's bump in HR allowed, plus he only had 45 saves in 134 appearances over the last 2 years, and a 14-13 record indicates plenty of blown saves. I am not expecting this signing to pay off.

 

Hope I'm wrong.


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#45 dude

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 11:22 AM

He's a guy I am not expecting much from. I understand the need, and he certainly has experience, but at 36 with decreasing K rates and last year's bump in HR allowed, plus he only had 45 saves in 134 appearances over the last 2 years, and a 14-13 record indicates plenty of blown saves. I am not expecting this signing to pay off.

 

Hope I'm wrong.

 

We can go through his recent history (back to 2019) but he's kind of been jerked around a lot.  He picked his agent (it's not Boras) and he did what he did and at the end of the day you have to get your job done, but this will be the first season in a while that he's entered the season in a stable closer role.  Not completely true.  In 2021 he entered the season as the Cubs Closer and had a 0.49 ERA and was lights out until he got traded to the CWS as a setup guy.

 

His stuff is still really good and he has a lot to pitch for, both individually and as part of the team.  Everyone blows Saves.  Bautista blew 6 saves last year.  He'll have a couple clunkers but everyone does.

 

Time will tell.  38 Saves gives him the 5th best Season in Orioles franchise history.  Get 40+.



#46 Mackus

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 11:27 AM

Bautista even BS,L once with a 3-run lead. I still have a hard time believing that happened. 40% of his earned runs allowed for the season.

I think we'll be in the market for a closer/setup at the deadline, to augment if not outright replace, but Kimbrel was a decent choice. Much easier to accept "fine" at closer since they went huge at SP. I'd still have preferred Hader.

#47 TwentyThirtyFive

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 11:37 AM

Kimbrel is less risky than Hader. Contract wise

I dont know why Kimbrel isnt the stable closer. It will take a prolonged poor stretch for him to be removed IMO

#48 Mackus

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 11:46 AM

Sure, 1 year is always less risky than 5. I'd have taken the risk because he's much better now and I think would be a weapon for years. The thought of tandeming him and Bautista in the future is so tantalizing.

I think Kimbrel will be fine. I also think we'll be interested in adding another better than fine arm to the back of the pen come July. Who closes games if such a guy is acquired is debatable, depends on a few factors.

#49 Mackus

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 11:50 AM

Kimbrel's had a 3 1/2 ERA over the past two seasons. That's probably on the low end for closers. Just looking at last year's saves totals, the top 10 guys were all lower than that, in fact 7 being sub-3 and 4 of those were sub-2.

Only 9 of the top 30 guys by save totals last year were 3.50 or higher. So he's likely to be average to below average, IMO. Below average doesn't mean horrible, just most teams will have a better closer option.

#50 TwentyThirtyFive

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Posted 24 February 2024 - 11:50 AM

I would hope that Kimbrel is pitching well enough that any potential trade acquistions are more on par with him vs being better than him. Its almost assured we will be interested in BP help if we are contending in July. How many high lev guys will really be out there is the question

#51 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 17 March 2024 - 10:26 AM



#52 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 10 April 2024 - 08:55 PM

Closed it down.

#53 BaltBird 24

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Posted 14 April 2024 - 09:12 PM

6 IP, 11 K, 3 H, 0 BB, 1 ER

Was pumping it back up into the mid-upper 90s today.
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#54 85Knight

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Posted 21 April 2024 - 12:44 AM

It's gonna make life a lot easier for this organization if he keeps doing what he's doing. So far this is better than we expected.

#55 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 21 April 2024 - 08:34 AM






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