With the Colorado Rockies headed into the season with a young pitching staff, it stands to reason that Walt Weiss would be craving a veteran pitcher with the ability to get ground ball outs to bolster the staff. Enter pitcher Jon Garland. Garland was with the Seattle Mariners this spring but was not going to make the opening day roster. He boldly requested his unconditional release at that time and the Rockies pounced quickly.
It has to take some guts for a guy to request his release. I mean he didn’t pitch last season and didn’t pitch much in 2011. You might think the guy would accept a minor league deal and try to work his way upwards but no. Garland must have known that he had performed well enough to be an asset to another team. The Rockies certainly jumped on with both feet. Garland might be their fifth starter but also has the ability to come in from the pen.
Most of his outings have come as a starter so it appears that Weiss would want to lean in that direction with him. He might not be always lights out but he is exactly the kind of pitcher that the Rockies need. He gets a lot of grounders. Also he is veteran enough to have healthy experience but not over the hill enough to be ineffective.
If you look at his numbers you will see as well that he is an innings eater. Several times over the course of his career he has hit the 200 innings mark or close to it. The Rockies apparently were kicking themselves for not grabbing Garland when they could earlier this year. As soon as he was available, they snatched him up and don’t appear ready to let go.