It does not take much more than 10 minutes to watch Edinson Volquez and know that he is as wild as they get. I decided to take a look at Volquez’s numbers to find out just how far he has fallen from his dominant 2008 campaign where he went 17-6 with a 3.21 ERA.
- ERA has risen from 3.21 to 5.93
- His K-rate has declined one strikeout per nine innings
- His walks per nine has risen from 4.27 to 5.82
- HR rate risen from .64 to 1.59
- Opponents BABIP is only .002 points different so bad luck is not involved
- He gives up a home run on 20% of flyballs instead of just 8% of flyballs
- Instead of throwing 9% curveballs he throws 20% curveballs
- His fastball gives up 21.4 more runs than average with his fastball. In 2008, his fastball saved him over 4 runs over the course of the season. That is a 25 runs swing.
- His changeup saves him just 1.4 runs above average compared to 10.4 runs above average in 2008.
- Hitters see just 45% of pitches in the strikezone compared to 50% of pitches in 2008
- His curveball is better now than in 2008, but his fastball and changeup location has made those two pitches his least effective so far in 2011.
- Volquez has thrown 916 strikes compared to 627 balls. By comparison, Jair Jurrjens (who was worse than Volquez in ’08 but is now an all-star) of the Atlanta Braves has thrown 1053 strikes compared to 559 balls.
The list can go on and on. Nearly every stat listed on Volquez documents his regression and inability to throw strikes. I do not see how the Reds can keep him in the rotation with Dontrelle Willis pitching so well in AAA. Both Volquez and Travis Wood need to spend some time in AAA to rededicate themselves to their mechanics and consistency.
Volquez should not start on Sunday, and if he does start, it will be just another sign that Walt Jocketty is being very stubborn with this 2011 roster. Dontrelle Willis gives the Reds the best chance to win. NOT Edinson Volquez.