LaTroy: Someone Else’s Problem

Specifically, San Francisco's. The Cubs today traded LaTroy Hawkins to the Giants for and .

Since the Giants are my #2 team (thanks to The Lovely Wife), I'm pretty familiar with these guys. Williams came up in 2003 and had a real nice rookie year (88K, 49 BB in 131 IP) but struggled in 2004 and had to have elbow surgery at the end of the season. He hasn't put it back together since - he started this year on the active roster but struggled and was sent down for a few starts to work on his mechanics, and hasn't come back up yet. This is why:

2005, Fresno: 15 K, 17 BB, 30 2/3 IP, 9.39 ERA

He is having trouble finding consistency with his delivery, and I he's also had to deal with some pretty serious family problems, so he's far from a sure thing, but he's still only 23. When he came up in '03, he looked remarkably poised for a 21-year-old and displayed great control. He's a project, but he's also got a pretty decent upside.

Aardsma, John Sickels' , was the Giants' #1 pick in the 2003 draft and made his major league debut less than a year after being drafted. He was a closer in college and has continued in that role in the minors and in his brief time in the majors. He's also notable for replacing Henry Aaron as the first player, alphabetically, in major league history.

I like this trade. I wasn't as down on Hawkins as some, but given that he had been reduced to pitching mop-up (loss of confidence? loss of talent?), I think the Cubs got a good return for him. I think we'll enjoy Jerome Williams' pooka-necklaced presence on the mound if he gets things turned around (and who knows, being back with Dusty might help), and Aardsma can be a solid piece of the bullpen puzzle.

Comments

I think this is a good trade. I think everyone turned on Hawkins and he needed a fresh start. I hope Williams can turn it around and could be valuable in the future.

Another one of these trades where the Cubs actually have to pay the other team to take the guy off our hands. Things that make you go hmmmmm.

Just one nitpick I have about this article. It's "puka" shell, not "pooka".

Just one grip about this article from me. It's a "puka" shell necklace, not a "pooka" necklace.

well, christian, time to make the odds for who becomes the new target of the wrath in wrigleyville. please pencil me in for 5 dollars on aramis. and, 20 dollars on d. corey patterson.

christian, please post a table of odds on who becomes the new target for the wrath in wrigleyville. and pencil me in for 5 dollars on aramis. with 20 dollars on corey patterson.

sorry for the double post.

Maybe I'm wrong, but he came up in '03, right? So I don't think he was never with Dusty.

Jerome Williams was one of the top young pitchers in baseball in 2003 before coming to Spring Training in Scottsdale last season weighing 270 pounds. He struggled with his weight during the 2004 season, and had several minor arm & elbow injuries (strains) during the first part of the season, before undergoing arthroscopic surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow in August. He returned to action at the end of September, and made an effective start for the Giants on Sept. 30. During this past off-season, Williams lost 35 pounds, but had his work-out routine interrupted due to his father's battle with hepatitis type-C in Hawaii that resulted in his dad having to have two kidney transplants (his body rejected the first one) and a liver transplant. Because he was with his dad In Hawaii, Jerome arrived late to Spring Training, and didn't have time to get the work he needed to prepare for the start of the season, including work on a new modified delivery designed to decrease stress on his elbow. Instead of leaving him in Scottsdale at Extended Spring Training, the Giants put him to work in their starting rotation as their #5 starter, and he struggled in two starts before being sent to AAA Fresno to "work on some things." Williams has been at Fresno for more than a month (it was supposed to have been just a couple of starts), and he has been regressing rather improving. Apparently the alteration of his motion to reduce stress on his elbow has left him totally lost. Whether he can regain the form he showed in 2003 and at times in early 2004 is anyone's guess, but he's only 23. Hopefully leaving the Giants organization will give him a fresh start (mentally), and maybe that's what he really needs. In a way, he is the Giants' Andy Sisco. But I wouldn't expect Jerome Williams to be ready to battle for a spot in the Cubs rotation until later this season or (even more likely) 2006. He is a mess right now. David Aardma was the closer on that great Rice University team that won the College World Series in 2003. Like Chad Cordero (Nationals), Aardsma made it to the major leagues in 2004, but struggled and was sent to AAA Fresno, where he pitched pretty well albeit with a bit of loss of velocity on his explosive fastball. He was sent to AA (Norwich) at the start of this season, where the Giants were working him as a starting pitcher, probably to get him innings and more work. Aardsma could be the Cubs' closer of the future, or at the very least a major league middle reliever.

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  • crunch 3 hours 41 min ago (view)

    the indians waited too long to get trevor bauer away from influencing clevenger as a professional and human being...

    there's a reason bauer has been sold "below cost" by 2 teams now.

    also, do they even care that carlos carrasco is coming back from a boatload of chemo and has decided to participate in this season when he could have just taken his $$ and gone home for a year?

     

  • Cubster 4 hours 20 min ago (view)

    Per Jon Heyman: Hear Indians starter Mike Clevinger sat through a team meeting yesterday and defended Zach Plesac knowing he’d been out with Plesac, then flew back with the team.

     

  • crunch 7 hours 22 min ago (view)

    thursday stl/det double header postponed.

    cards have played 5 games and might not play a 6th until the weekend...maybe.

    some other teams will be 20+ games played at that point.

     

  • Eric S 8 hours 5 min ago (view)

    Dietrich ends up with the Rangers on a minor league deal and sent to their alternate training site.

    https://twitter.com/rangerblake/status/1292857617321205760?s=21

     

  • Cubster 8 hours 47 min ago (view)

    No new Cardinals tested negative on Sunday. They need two days in a row of neg. testing to get the OK to resume the season. Today's tests are not back. 

     

  • crunch 10 hours 13 min ago (view)

    STL is going to go 1/2 month without playing a game...more at this point are possible.

    they've played 5 games.  some teams have played 16-17 games.

     

  • Childersb3 10 hours 38 min ago (view)

    Why isn't Ryan Jensen at South Bend these days?

    Regardless of if he gets called up. He should be there if he's healthy and able

     

  • crunch 1 day 6 hours ago (view)

    "Zach Plesac (CLE) was sent home by the Indians and will be quarantined for 72 hours going out with friends in Chicago on Saturday night."

    dude, wtf...

     

  • Eric S 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    Cubs have reset the rotation ahead of the series against the Indians: Lester, Hendricks, Darvish, Chatwood and Mills

    Mills and Hendricks no longer back to back which makes sense given their similar styles

     

  • Mornington Crescent 1 day 8 hours ago (view)

    They actually did a Strat-O-Matic simulation of the 1981 all star game at Municipal Stadium in Cleveland when the game was cancelled due to the strike, complete with scoreboard display.  Bob Feller did the ceremonial first dice roll.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 10 hours ago (view)

    Derek Dietrich getting released and opening up a slot on the Cubs MLB Club Player Pool roster (which was full prior to Dietrich getting released) would allow Mark Zagunis to opt back into the season (if he so chooses) and return to the Club Player Pool, if being on the Restricted List was going to prevent him from being a first-time minor league 6YFA post-2020. 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 10 hours ago (view)

    The path for Dietrich to the Cubs MLB Active List roster was always based on a potential injury to Rizzo, Kipnis, Schwarber, or Heyward, so I can see why Dietrich would request his release - IF - he has a for sure MLB gig with another club waiting for him, but otherwise no.     

     

  • Eric S 1 day 11 hours ago (view)

    Cubs released Derek Dietrich from his minor league contract - at Dietrich's request - so he can pursue other MLB opportunities.  Wouldn't be surprised if he hooks on with the Braves as 2B Ozzie Albies was put on the IL last week with a wrist injury that may take considerable time to heal. In any event, the Cubs player pool back to 59 of a possible 60 players. 

     

  • Cubster 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    Phillip Evans suffered a broken jaw and a concussion in his ugly collision with Gregory Polanco Per Jon Heyman.

     

  • Cubster 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    Pirates-Cardinals series also cancelled. Maybe they can play the games on Stratomatic with dice or All-Star baseball with spinners?

    This was the Pirates only trip to StL but they do have a mid Sept series vs StL in PIT. 
    at least the Cardinals can't whine about losing home attendance revenue (but they do lose in Park advertising revs).

     

  • Jackstraw 1 day 18 hours ago (view)

    So much for his offseason workouts with Kimbrel.