Yes, the Colorado Rockies had already joined the long line of teams who weren’t interested in the services of Kyle Lohse. That doesn’t mean the team can’t take a look though, right?
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, that’s exactly what they’ve done over the past week, inquiring about the veteran right-hander’s services in the “very, very remote chance he just flat-out doesn’t have anything” in terms of opportunities, as a source tells Rosenthal.
That doesn’t sound like that the team is ready to get in the line of Lohse suitors any time soon, despite the Rockies not having any real options to bolster its rotation right now. The money is probably a factor, but their hesitance might have more to do with whether Lohse’s stuff will play at Coors.
The short version is that it’s unlikely. The righty isn’t exactly a ground ball machine (1.13 GB/FB rate over the last two seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals), but he’s also a pitch-to-contact type who relies on control. While the type of control he showed in the last couple of seasons (1.80 BB/9) will help him play at any ball park, the fly balls simply won’t do so in Colorado.
It’s no surprise that his career numbers at Coors haven’t been very good. Over five starts in his career there, Lohse has posted a 6.67/1.67 ERA/WHIP over 27 innings, including a five-run outing over six innings last season. Though they’re small sample sizes, the fact that the Rockies play in such a unique hitter-friendly environment for half of the season is something that’s weighs heavily in the team’s consideration.
So for now, Colorado will continue waiting on the sidelines while they look for someone who is an ideal fit. Though the candidates are scarce for now, Spring Training might yield options who end up victims of the numbers game — options like Jon Garland, perhaps:
#Rockies have scouted Garland, but interest is lukewarm. Not sure if he can stay healthy
— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) March 23, 2013
Sure, it’s not as though Garland’s brand of pitch-to-contact game is going to play particularly well with the Rockies either … but at least he won’t cost the team $45 million over three years, right?