Siberian Baseball

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Perfect Storm

Have I mentioned my lack of respect for LaTroy Hawkins lately? How he's become the punchline for nearly all of my struggling reliever/whiplash candidate jokes? How I mused to get a sick feeling whenever he'd enter a game on the North Side and I was always a little disappointed to see him come in because in any video game I'd trade his ass for a bag of used baseballs the first chance I got?

Yeah, I guess it's come up once or twice.

Hawkins signed a new deal today for what is reporting to be one year and an undisclosed sum in - are you ready for it? - Colorado.

Oh, sweet Jesus, this could get ugly quick.

While he had surprisingly good numbers in his last full season in Chicago on the road at Coors Field (the Rockies only mustered batting averages and on-base percentages of .143 against him) things got a little worse when he made the jump to San Francisco where in eight games he allowed an on-base percentage of .500, slugging of .667 and batting average of .333 - it's also worth nothing that he didn't face many batters in this time frame to be fair, seeing only six at-bats - but that's still less than stellar for limited work there.

Looking at his career numbers and taking into account moves from and back to the American League, it appears that Hawkins has probably hit a plateau and is on the downswing for any number of reasons.

His career numbers slimmed down to hit a low point in the year before his acquisition by the Cubs (his ERA shrunk from the eights in limited use in 1995 and 1996 to the two-three-four range before ballooning again in Baltimore last season with a 4.48 ERA in 60 appearances.

So, while a trip back to the NL might help a bit, expect Coors to take that edge off in the mile-high air.

Not quite sure how much he'll help, but at least it's a one-year deal with a mutual option. Keep that in mind, Rockies fans.

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