Aug 28, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcherDavid Price
(14) poses for a photo during batting practice before a game against the Detroit Tigers at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
#1 – David Price
A general manager’s dream: a true ace who still plays like an ace at the age of 30. Price’s pedigree includes being drafted first overall in the first round by the Tampa Bay Rays. The eight-year vet from Tenessee was traded, along with his golden arm, from Tampa to the Detroit Tigers last season, as Tampa wanted to get the most for him because they didn’t think they would be able to re-sign him. The Tigers must have felt the same this season, as they traded him to the Toronto Blue Jays whom, like the Tigers from last year, are looking to make a deep playoff run.
Price has earned a 13-4 record, with a 2.42 ERA and 179 strikeouts in 182.1 innings. He would have had more wins, instead of no-decisions, in 26 starts had it not been for the Tigers’ offensive players being injured throughout the year.
With the Blue Jays, Price is 4-0 in five starts. He’s also projected to end the year, which will likely continue into the post-season, with an 18-7 record, a 2.57 ERA, and 221 strikeouts in 224.1 innings. That’s what $19.75 million buys you.
The Price you want is the one that gives you a .267 and .233 opposing batting averages against lefties and righties, respectively. It gives you a .186 average in 11 games in the cathedral of Boston, via Yawkey Way. Price has a allowed a 1.95 ERA with 60 strikeouts to only 21 walks in those 74 innings. Red Sox Nation may just burst into song if they get the opportunity to see him in Fenway Park in Boston’s home jersey.
You could look at his 94-mph fastball, that he depends on even more than Cueto, using it 56% of the time, and cry out as this author’s hypocracy. You could argue that his disregard for his slider in favor of a cutter is wonderous and confusing. You could argue that his knuckle-curve and his changeup should be used more, especially since he’s left-handed. You could even argue that his once-tension-filled relationship with David Ortiz, the face of the Red Sox franchise, may still cause problems in the clubhouse.
But, if you want John Henry and the ownership group to summon Dombrowski into the head office and demand that he get the best pitcher on the free agent market, regardless of money, then Price is the name you want. That is, unless the deep pockets of the Rogers group who own the Jays don’t re-sign him, first.
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