The Rockies won't know how they made out on the Ubaldo Jimenez trade until next year at the earliest.
But based on Jimenez's first two starts with the Cleveland Indians, especially last night's gem, Colorado could be feeling some seller's remorse.
While the Rockies are figuring out which Triple-A prospects to bring up for the end of the season and starting a 36-year-old pitcher who hasn't thrown in the majors this season (and led the league in losses last year), Jimenez is winning relevant games for a team fighting for a playoff spot.
Against the Detroit Tigers last night, Jimenez threw eight innings, allowing three runs on six hits and striking out six. He tossed 117 pitches and touched 96 mph with his fastball. Jimenez's Cleveland debut was the second in a pivotal three-game series with the Tigers. The win pulled the Indians within two games of the Tigers for the AL Central lead.
Jimenez showed good control by allowing only one walk. If he pitched all season like he did last night, he probably wouldn't be in Cleveland right now.
His first game with the Indians was not as impressive; he gave up five runs on seven hits in five innings against the Texas Rangers. But Jimenez was facing one of the league's top three offenses in August -- the kind of situation in which almost no pitcher fares well. The Indians wound up losing the game in extra innings and Jimenez received a no decision.
On the Rockies' side of the trade, nothing has happened. Not one of the four players Jimenez was traded for has thrown a pitch or swung a bat for the Rockies. Pitcher Alex White has made two out of four scheduled rehab starts for a finger injury. He should join the Rockies rotation some time in September.
Drew Pomeranz, the prize of the trade and a player who can't officially be named yet, is throwing bullpen sessions and waiting until August 15, when the Rockies are allowed to announce him as part of the trade. Pitcher Joe Gardner and utilityman Matt McBride are still playing in the minors, where they will stay for the foreseeable future.
The Rockies need patience to see the full value of this trade -- but it surely doesn't look like Jimenez lost all that he had.
More from our Baseball archive: "Colorado Rockies are bums -- but if they trade Ubaldo Jimenez, they are shmucks."
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