Tuesday, February 18, 2014

25-Man Roster Dissection: Kevin Correia

Last season there were plenty of question marks surrounding the Twins starting rotation. It looked like there were very few guarantees as the team headed to Florida. This might have been a bad omen as the Twins struggled with one of the worst rotations in the American League. The starting staff might have been one of the team's biggest flaws from a year ago.

This year is a little different as the Twins were very aggressive on the free agent market and the starting staff has added some perceived depth to start the year. Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes will be added to the front half of the rotation that will also include starters from last year, Kevin Correia and Mike Pelfrey.

2013 Recap: 4.19 ERA, 1.42 WHIP, 101 SO, 45 BB (185.1 IP)
Correia came to the Twins after spending the first decade of his career in the National League. There can be a little bit of a bump in pitchers numbers with a transition to a DH league but things went about as expected for Corriea. He pitched over 180 innings for only the second time in his career and his ERA and SO/BB rate were better than his career marks. The problem was he became the Twins best starter and this isn't really a role he should be suited to fit as his 218 hits allowed were the sixth most in the American League. He added a veteran leader to the pitching staff and this might have helped with some of the younger members of the pitching core.

Forecasting 2014: 4.35 ERA, 1.39 WHIP, 98 SO, 47 BB (184.0 IP)
If Minnesota can get close to the same season out of Correia in 2014, the team will likely be happy. He is in a contract year so maybe he will have a little something to play for throughout the season. He's already 33-years old so he might be playing for one of his last major league contracts. With Nolasco and Hughes brought into the fold, Correia can fit better into the middle of the rotation instead of being the man at the top. On the road, opponents hit 60 points higher than him when he pitched at Target Field and this helped him to have an ERA almost two runs lower. Look for this trend to continue with his home starts in 2014.

25-Man Roster Safety: Locked-In

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