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Bartolo Colon Headed to 15-Day DL

August 17, 2013

A groin strain may be responsible for Bartolo Colon‘s recent struggles, but regardless it will put him on the shelf for the next two weeks as he heads to the disabled list. Colon, who has struggled this month, will be replaced by Tommy Milone. On the year Colon owns a 2.97 ERA, with a 3.38 FIP in his 154 1/3 innings on the mound. Across 24 starts he has managed just 4.8 K/9 (the lowest in baseball), 1.5 BB/9 and 0.6 HR/9 while posting an average .292 BABIP and being worth 2.9 WAR. Just last Wednesday I tweeted (a tweet RT’d by Mike Ferrin of MLBNetwork Radio),

“I wonder if last season looked good for Colon not because of PEDs but rather because he didn’t have to play the last 50 games?”

While I said it somewhat sarcastically, there was a very large kernel of truth to it. In 2011 with the Yankees Colon faded down the stretch and this year it seems to be happening again. Could it be his early departure from the 2012 season allowed him to post better numbers before fatigue ate away at them? In 2012 he had a 3.43 ERA and 3.82 FIP with 5.4 K/9, 1.4 BB/9 and 1.0 HR/9 in 152 1/3 innings. We will see if this time off helps out. I also wonder if this is a real injury or just a way to give him some rest like what I think the A’s did with Mark Ellis before he was supplanted by Jemile Weeks, or like what I think the A’s did with Cliff Pennington last year.

Milone meanwhile who will take Colon’s scheduled start tomorrow, pitched mediocre baseball in Oakland this year with a 4.39 ERA and 4.47 FIP in 133 1/3 innings backed by 6.8 K/9, 2.2 BB/9 and an alarming 1.5 HR/9. In two starts with Sacramento that came in Des Moines and in Omaha, he has thrown 10 1/3 innings, with a 1.74 ERA and 0.59 FIP as he has managed 13.1 K/9, 0.9 BB/9 and 0.0 HR/9 and somehow has avoided being burned by a .516 BABIP. While normally I’d say this move weakens the A’s, at this point I think Milone may be better equipped to make the start and frankly Colon’s time off could benefit him and the A’s in September.

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