I’m a big Farq fan and think that he adds readily available depth to the pen. I’m not sure that he’ll ever be a closer long-term, but at a minimum, he’s a setup man in the same form as Jason Frasor.
Farquhar has 40 minor league saves to his credit, including 1 this season in Sacramento (AAA). He’s been used by the A’s in multiple inning outings in 2011, going 8 innings in only 4 appearances. I don’t know if they were testing him in terms of long-relief potential, but he did well enough, giving up 7 hits, 3 BB and getting 9 Ks over those 8 innings.
Assuming Farquhar joins AA Las Vegas, he will likely get his fair chances to close, and will have the likes of Winston Abreu, Chad Cordero, and Josh Roenicke to fight against for a chance to get a look with the Jays. If everything goes well for him in Vegas, I don’t see why he wouldn’t get that shot at some point in 2012 (for September at a minimum).
Giving up David Purcey for Farquhar isn’t easy to do, but it does provide a return that the Jays know extremely well, are comfortable with, and can now depend on as possible pen help WITH options. The Jays can see which of their many AAA relievers are ready for the every day pressure in The Show, and now have a decent RHP duo of Roenicke and Farquhar battling for a long-term role with the club. As someone who was a team mate of many of the current Las Vegas roster while with New Hampshire in 2010, there’s no doubt that Farquhar will fit in nicely within the clubhouse.
What to expect from Farquhar? He needs to continue to work on getting his walk rates down. He consistently had walk rates above 5.7 BB/9 throughout his minors career, until he lowered them to 4.9 BB/9 in 2010. If he can somehow cut that rate down by a walk or 2 per 9, he should be very effective. With strikeout rates hovering around 10 K/9 for the majority of the time, he can get out of jams and has the ability to miss bats. He works well and aggressively, doesn’t allow many HRs (never above 0.8 HR/9), and does a good job keeping the ball down in the zone.
It’s not a huge move on the surface, but if Farquhar can become a potent setup man in The Show, he may very well outdo what David Purcey will provide the A’s with. I don’t love the deal for the Jays, but I understand and respect it. After all, the return is much better than letting him walk….right?
Jays Add Yohan Pino
You would think that the Tribe would have learned their lesson in dealing with Alex Anthopoulos after he robbed them of Jayson Nix for peanuts, but they’re still dealing with the Jays GM. Who knows, maybe it’s former Jays MLB.com writer Jordan Bastien who’s getting things done for the Jays by spiking their coffees….
The deal this time, once again in return for cash considerations, is for RHP Yohan Pino. Pino (27) hails from Venezuela, is 6’2″ 180 lbs. He has 36 starts under his belt in AAA (210.2 IP) and has managed a 4.74 and 1.348 whip at the level. But, these numbers do not tell the whole story.
Prior to 2010, Pino’s numbers sometimes ranked amongst the best at the levels and in the leagues in which he participated. In 2009, Pino made 10 stellar starts in AAA for the Twins and Indians. He had an ERA under 3 with each club (2.82 w/Min, 1.29 w/Cle), an overall whip under 1.00, struck out 58 in 65 IP while walking only 13, and had good ratios across the board.
In 2008 and 2010 (4.54 and 5.75 ERAs respectively), Pino showed cracks in his performances and really had a hard time using his stuff to his advantage. He allowed 10.8 H/9 and 2.9 BB/9 in 2010, all as a starter in AAA, and also served up a career high 1.5 HR/9, all of which killed his chances to be effective.
Thus far in 2011, Pino has made 2 relief appearances (1.1 IP), allowing 2 hits and striking out 2 for Cleveland’s AAA affiliate, Akron.
What’s to be expected from Pino? Who really knows. He has been added to New Hampshire’s roster and will likely be used in a starting role there. At only 27, he still has a chance to get a shot in the majors and could surprise some if he can just get more consistent with his pitches. He doesn’t have a problem with walks, and has shown he can miss plenty of bats. The job now lies in getting Jays affiliate coaches to have a closer look at his mechanics and to see if they can tweek his approach enough to make him a viable starter in The Show.
Since he’s headed to NH, Pino will join Zach Stewart, B.J. LaMura, Chad Beck, Joel Carreno and Rey Gonzalezon the club as a starting core. This indicates that one of these pitchers will likely move up to AAA, down to HiA, or to the pen. Look for that move to be completed very soon.
If that doesn’t work out, there’s little doubt in my mind that he’ll do a decent job in the pen. Whether or not it will be enough to get him a look in MLB is questionable, but likely if the opporunity arises.
All-in-all, these two moves are both minor ones in stature, but both could help the Jays in building a pen that would support quite a talented group of starters in the very near future. Therefore, these moves should be seen in positive light, since there’s nothing wrong with upgrading your pen, even if it is in terms of minor league depth.