MLB: AZ Diamondbacks Newest Pitcher Bronson Arroyo
In previous articles, I pushed for the Arizona Diamondbacks to sign Pitcher Bronson Arroyo. On Monday the team finalized his contract. Arroyo will get $19 million over two years, with the Diamondbacks holding an $11 million option for 2016. There is also a $4.5 million buyout attached to the option, so Arroyo is guaranteed at least $23.5 million for the term of his contract.
Both fans and media consider the $23.5 million dollars salary rather high, especially when you consider that Arroyo will turn 37 on February 24. They are also concerned that Arroyo has a lot of innings on his arm; which is true; as he has thrown 200+ innings every season since 2005, except in 2011 when he threw for only 199.
And, Chase Field might not be the best venue for Arroyo’s pitching style; he is known as a “fly-ball” pitcher, so he could give up a number of homeruns in Arizona.
The Diamondbacks had a potential five man starting rotation with Corbin, Miley, Cahill, McCarthy and Delgado even before they signed Arroyo, but having the chance to get a potential 13+ win, 200+ inning veteran starter to strengthen their pitching staff was something the Diamondbacks could not pass up.
I believe Arroyo still has many innings left in his arm. When you look at his career since 2005, without factoring in his 2011 season when he attempted to pitch through mononucleosis, Arroyo has been as reliable as a soft-tossing control pitcher can be. He pitches a lot of innings, limits base runners and wins games. The plan is for Arroyo to pitch at least seven innings every time he takes the mound.
Arroyo’s fastball is in the 88–93 MPH range, which is considered average among major league pitchers. However, his fastball has excellent movement and, being the crafty veteran he is, he is excellent at placing his fastball exactly where he wants it. His slider moves away from right-handed batters and he mixes in a good old fashion straight changeup as well.
His best pitch might be his curveball. Arroyo has confidence in that pitch and will throw it using multiple arm angles. And, he will throw it on any batters count. Much of his curveball success might be due to the high leg kick in his pitching motion. When you watch his pitching style and see his leg kick you can see why he is one of the better pitchers at holding runners on base.
Adding Arroyo means the Diamondbacks’ will have some hard decisions to make as the team progresses through Spring Training and into the start of the regular season. Will Randall Delgado move to the bullpen? If Delgado goes to the bull-pen where do Will Harris and Matt Reynolds fit into the roster? Could Trevor Cahill or Brandon McCarthy get traded? Arroyo’s presence could indicate that Archie Bradley will start the year at Triple A Reno.
These types of decisions are what MLB organizations refer to as “good problems to have.”
I hope to see you at Salt River Fields for Diamondbacks 2014 Spring Training.
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